Some basic stats as of 2003: There were 47 million housing units in Japan, of which 28 million (61%) were owned and 17 million (37%) were rented. Twelve percent of the rental units, or about 2.89 million, were public housing. The amount of rent charged in these public housing units is determined by income. As mentioned below several times, the recession has forced local governments to reassess the criteria for public housing applications in order to make it “fairer.” According to an Asahi Shimbun survey, 40% of local governments are planning to lower the maximum income ceiling for being accepted into public housing from ¥200,000 a month to ¥158,000 a month.
Last month, eight local governments in Fukuoka Prefecture signed an agreement with the two police stations that cover their area to basically ban known members of organized crime organizations from renting public housing units. The agreement went into effect on April 1, and apparently it’s no April Fool’s joke. Read More