Living in Japan Condominiums

condoThe rich history and culture of the archipelago is enhanced by an exciting urban lifestyle and unusual natural beauty. This much sought-after tourist destination has a pleasant and diverse climate. The country boasts a variety of historical attractions. Guests of Japan’s vacation rental properties are sure to love their experience in this marvelous travelers’ paradise.

Dwellers in Japan’s fabulous condos will experience the rich samurai culture that shaped the island nation’s history. Ancient theatrical and other art forms are still alive and well. Any visitor interested in the culture of the country should pay a visit to Tokyo’s famous museums.

The biological, historic and geographic majesty of Japan is well-known. The eye-catching image of the snow-clad Mount Fuji is an internationally recognized symbol for unspoiled natural beauty. The niceties available to tourists to Japanese vacation homes are numerous – there are hot springs, ice drift cruises, lush forests, and attractive campsites.

Japan is a well-developed nation judged by any standard, and despite its celebrated natural attractions, this favorite tourist destination has many sophisticated urban and manmade attractions for potential tourists. Guests of the country’s holiday rentals can drive or travel by the famous underground to destinations such as, the annual Cherry Blossom Festival grounds, Disneyland, and feudal castles.

A condo is a form of house ownership in which separate units of a larger building complex are sold, not rented. There is a lot of misunderstanding about the word ‘condominium.’ It actually does not refer to the type of unit itself, but the term applies to the legal ownership arrangement. Any multi-unit structure can act as a ‘condominium’. The earlier occupants should either vacate the building or purchase their units outright.

The owner of a condominium technically owns everything within their inner walls. The individual homeowners possess shared rights to the most common areas such as the elevators, corridors, club houses and pools. The proper maintenance of these common areas is the responsibility of a condominium association. Home owners own a share of interest in the association. They have to pay monthly dues and special maintenance fees for major problems.

Tokyo’s inner-city waterfront is greatly changed by the construction of huge structures in the post-industrial era. The number of new buildings in the Shinagawa area alone has gene over 12,000 units in ten locations in the past two and a half years.

If you would like to reserve room in one of the condos or Japan Villas, numerous service minded travel agents are out there to guide you. They are available immediately for short and long-term rental. Japanese condos come with all usual attractions and amenities. You will definitely love the spaciousness and cleanliness of Japanese buildings.

Many condos come with full kitchen, quality furnishings, hot-springs bathroom, Cable TV, DVD, VCR, CD Player, beach and picnic gear, air conditioning, and much more. Other amenities include kitchen, iron, blender, mixer, coffee maker, toaster, microwave ovens, cookware and utensils, spices, condiments and heaps of dinner and glassware.
Japanese condos offer all the comforts of your home while you’re away from it. The stay in a Japanese vacation rental would be an unforgettable experience. If you are positive on renting a condo, take your time to study the pros and cons of the purchase.

The largest buyers of condos include REITs and privately owned real estate funds. They usually convert originally built-for-sale condos to rental ones. Many individual buyers also put their newly purchased condos on the rental market. The coming up of large number of buildings is likely to put a downward pressure on rents. The price of a condo house can be much lower than a single-structure home.

A condo is not the best option for all potential homeowners. There is a noticeable lack of privacy in the common areas. If you are particular about having all of your amenities and maintain your own lawn and garden, then you are advised to follow single home ownership options in place of a condo. They can be more difficult to sell as opposed to a single home with some acreage. Condo owners own their units only, not the land beneath the structure. Veteran apartment renters who don’t mind the presence of close neighbors benefit the most from condo living.

Contemporary First Floor Condominum, Escazú, For Rent

Price: $3,600 Mensual

COD: 25-20
Phone: +(506) 2258-1558

Province: San José
Cantón: Escazú
Construction: 361m2
Bedrooms: 4
Bathrooms: 3
Parking: 3
A/C: Yes

This contemporary first floor condominium has four bedroom, three bathroom and is located in the heart of Escazú. This condo has a very spacious dinning room and living room and an open kitchen with granite counter-tops and contemporary wooden cabinetry. The master bedroom has 2 walk-in closets and a master bathroom with jacuzzi and double vanity. All bedrooms have  spacious wooden closets and wooden floors. There are two large terraces with a jacuzzi and access to green areas. There are three underground parking spaces and two storage areas with a laundry room and maid’s quarters. The condominium is very tranquil and is surrounded by luscious green areas. The property also offers a gym and 24/7 surveillance.

See this and other listings in the new Tico Times Real Estate section here.


Condominiums Changing the Face of New York City Real Estate

In the past, the vast majority of those that owned their own New York City apartment lived in co-ops. For a variety of economic, regulatory and historical reasons, these types of apartment buildings dominated the world of New York City residential construction during most of the 20th century. These days, however, more and more of the residential buildings being built are condominiums.

The two types of buildings differ in some important ways. A co-op has an ownership structure closer to that of a public corporation than a typical apartment building. Instead of owning a particular apartment, like in a condominium, those that live in a co-op own a certain share in the company that owns the building. The more valuable the apartment, the larger the share of the company the resident owns.

A cooperatively owned building offers certain advantages to its residents, especially in regards to legally deciding who can move in. The guarantee of a not having an obnoxious set of neighbors moving in right next door a few years down the road has always been one of the most important benefits co-ops offer their owners.

The popularity of co-ops, however, has always been due in part to government regulations that began to be put into place during the late 19th century. Today, the ownership regulations and requirements of co-ops are simply too cumbersome for many people living in a world where people change jobs and move more often than they ever have before.

Add to this the legal changes in the regulations of Manhattan condominiums that took place in New York in 1997 that granted condo associations greater financial leeway to pay for repairs, and it’s no surprise that so many of the new buildings being built in the city today are condos.

Indeed, some of the more architecturally stunning works today are condominiums. The Alexander, a twenty three story building quite close to Rockefeller center is one example of the impact that condominiums are having on the New York City skyline. The Element Condominium, at 555 West 59th, is another.

Even in these very exclusive condos, the process of purchasing a condo and subletting or selling it is usually considerably easier in comparison to a co-op. While there is an extra tax when purchasing a new condo that was not previously owned by a resident, the extra move in costs will usually be slightly less than those of an equivalent apartment in a co-op, especially if you are purchasing a condo from the previous resident.

Gm, Hines, Partner to Build Condominiums on the Detroit River

According to a press release from the automaker, the mixed-use development in downtown Detroit’s best riverfront location will be largely residential, designed to take advantage of premier waterfront property which offers spectacular views along with the many amenities offered in the GM Renaissance Center.

Hines will be financing and will lead the construction of the condominium development on GM’s surplus property. GM on the other hand, will receive a portion of future revenues from residential sales with its contribution of the property for the project. Additional development partners are likely to be included in the project, including Built Form, a design architect, and The Kramer Group, interior design consultants which have been both contracted for the project.

The Hines-GM developments will anchor the Detroit RiverWalk, a five-mile lineal park along the river which will ultimately span from the Ambassador Bridge to beyond the MacArthur Bridge at Belle Isle into Gabriel Richard Park. The RiverWalk offers beautiful, natural landscaping, and a place to walk, jog, or bike while enjoying the view.

A variety of amenities for this upscale project, including retail, restaurants, a fitness center, banking, valet parking, a post office and a movie theater will all be provided by the GM Renaissance Center, along with a 24-hour security for condominium residents.

A date for announcing specific development plans and construction schedules has not yet been determined.

About Hines
Hines is a privately owned real estate firm involved in real estate investment, development and property management worldwide. The Hines portfolio of projects underway, completed, acquired and managed for third parties includes more than 950 properties representing approximately 380 million square feet of office, residential, mixed-use, industrial, hotel, medical, retail and sports facilities, as well as large, master-planned communities and land developments. With offices in 67 U.S. cities and 15 foreign countries, and controlled assets valued at approximately $16 billion, Hines is one of the largest real estate organizations in the world. Visit for more information.

About General Motors
General Motors Corp., the world’s largest automaker, has been the annual global industry sales leader for 76 years. Founded in 1908, GM, maker of quality GMC power programmer, today employs about 280,000 people around the world. With global headquarters in Detroit, GM manufactures its cars and trucks in 33 countries. In 2006, nearly 9.1 million GM cars and trucks were sold globally under the following brands: Buick, Cadillac, Chevrolet, GMC, GM Daewoo, Holden, HUMMER, Opel, Pontiac, Saab, Saturn and Vauxhall. GM’s OnStar subsidiary is the industry leader in vehicle safety, security and information services. More information on GM can be found at

Thai Luxury Condominiums Sales in Thailand

A Bangkok-based developer, has recently revealed some staggering figures on the sale of it’s newest development. No question this is the Bangkok-based developer – most ambitious project to date and it seems to have paid off. Within three days of the March 2007 pre-launch, all of the initial units were freezed. Since then an 279 more condominium units have found purchasers. The sales have arrived at around 40 percent of the target sales value for the project. That is approximately 12 billion baht. The Bangkok-based developer has funded the construction of this development basically with cash flows and loans.

The luxury property project is set to be the tallest residential building in Bangkok at just over 250 meters. The building has facilities that will render it both luxurious and convenient. Dwellers will bask in the beautiful city and riverside views. They can also avail the services of dedicated pier with shuttle service to Saphan Taksin skytrain station.

This is astonishing news for both the Bangkok-based developer and the Bangkok property market. Recent forecasts demonstrate that Thailand is due for a recovery. Such a strong performance at the start of the year points at a turnaround and illustrates the potential Thailand and Bangkok’s property markets oozes out. The reason for this sudden demand in Bangkok properties is its new government.

Investors are counting on the new government to deliver new and improved infrastructure. So far, capital gains and rental outcomes have been extremely heartening and show unmistakable signs of growth. Initial successes will fuel confidence and further demand. Consumer confidence is an important factor in investing this year particularly with global concerns over the sub-prime lending slump.

Investment in fresh luxury condominiums in major CBD locations has resulted in an average of 4- 5% gross rental yield per annum during the past 4 years and 10-12% price appreciation per annum which is decent in comparison with other types of investment. Another key advantage in investing in residential properties is its promise for future use. The quota for foreign ownership in some condominiums has arrived at its 49% limit. As a result foreigners are not allowed to buy units in those buildings unless they purchase a unit from a foreign owner. This makes units belonging to foreigners more attractive in those buildings favored by foreigners. It seems that it is the start of two-tier pricing for Thai and foreigners in those projects which foreign quota is arrived.

Foreign investors have began to pay attention to this trend and are trying to invest more in good quality and well-designed buildings that are placed in major CBD locations despite the huge prices. Another reason behind the rise in condominium prices in downtown Bangkok among foreign investors and end-users is their manageable price levels. For example, with a budget of US$ 500,000 or around Baht 15 million, you could buy a luxury two-bedroom unit with 90-120 square meters in a major CBD location in Bangkok. If Thai luxury condominium sales are an indication, surely the Thai property market is set to prosper.

Maruti and Fifty Thousand Luxury Condominiums

Things changed in 1983 when the government set up Maruti, in collaboration with Suzuki, and its car manufacturing plant came up on the outskirts of the town in a huge tract of land – approximately five square kilometres, or more than a 1,000 acres. Those were dull times – land was cheap. The government probably paid not more than INR 20,000 per acre for the tract, if at all.

Cue 2007. Times have changed. Blame it to rapid industrialisation, the scorching growth pace of the service industry and the speculative behaviour of the realty business, land in the vicinity is floating at around INR 60,000 per square yard. Even if one was to look at a bulk deal, Maruti’s 1,000 acres will fetch a cool INR 150 billion!

That is USD 3.3 billion!!

That’s exactly the sum that Suzuki (Maruti’s parent) wants to invest in India over the next few years.

The above may be a completely worthless and stupid calculation, considering that Maruti has to make cars at the plant and while a potential fifty thousand luxury condominiums, ten malls, a couple of IT parks and some commercial buildings have the potential of turning the Gurgaon realty scene on its head, this is little more than wishful thinking…till I start looking at the scene from a different perspective.

Maruti’s second plant at Manesar is operational and being a huge facility in itself can be potentially expanded to a million units, the company’s target for the near future.

The Manesar facility is close to Maruti’s existing Gurgaon plant so it won’t affect logistics to a great extent. Theoretically, production can be shifted from the Gurgaon plant to the Manesar plant, in phases to maintain smoothness. Already the Swift line is at the Maneasr plant and the SX4 sedan should be getting put together there as well. The models that are not being built at Manesar currently can be shifted there, model-by-model, in 2-3 years, all except the 800, which might be on its last wind by then.

And in case the Manesar plant proves small then Maruiti-Suzuki can set up another one in the nearby upcoming Reliance SEZ. The SEZ plant can be used for exports and will benefit from duty waivers as well.

While looking at its plant as an asset in this sense may not be in Maruti’s idea of things for now, the plant itself is as juicy as they come. Once on the outskirts, it is now as central as one can be in a place like Gurgaon with easy connectivity to the old town as well as the new areas. The plant has a huge frontage on the old Delhi-Jaipur road and is a few hundred metres away from the busy NH-8 expressway. There are already premium residential complexes, a planned golf course and a large number of software and services companies (their employees would love to live in the luxury condos that come up at the MUL plant site) in near vicinity with a bunch of existing and planned five-star hotels within a 3-4 kilometre radius. Heck, even the international airport is a few kilometres away.

With MUL’s proven clout with the government, things like Change of Land Usage (CLUs) etc. will not matter,. The company’s management, alongwith potential prospective buyers DLF and Unitech, can even arm-twist the government to bring a Delhi Metro link from the planned Gurgaon extension to the existing plant’s rear gate. That should bump the price of the condos and ensure that the builder, who buys the land, makes a neat profit as well. The plant has the potential of becoming the largest single township in the NCR-Delhi region or even 2-3 big townships, in case one builder finds it difficult to shell out this much moolah.

So has Maruti ever thought of doing this? Maybe. More likely, maybe not!

Far more importantly, have the stock analysts factored in the land value in MUL’s share price? If not, spread the word, and watch the stock spiral away.

Home Buyers–california Condominiums

With the median home price of a single family home in California at $567,690,
according to the California Association of Realtors, condominiums have
become an increasingly attractive home ownership option for singles, young
couples, young families and retired couples as starter homes as opposed to
the traditional detached single family home.

Condos are usually located in well established, proven suburban
neighborhoods and yet are usually located close to major freeways which
provide the homeowner with accessibility to the workplace. Some condos are
the same size as houses in regard to square footage, and others have the
square footage of comparable apartments. They vary in price range and can
be a good starter home for young couples or singles. While the rapid price
appreciation in the state, especially in the Los Angeles, California area, has
accelerated the price of single family homes, according to a California
Association of Realtors report it has also strained the purchasing ability of
many young families. Many young couples therefore may often opt for a
condominium in a neighborhood with a better school system as opposed to
purchasing a single family home in a less desirable neighborhood.

As for retired couples who may just want to downsize and avoid being
saddled with the responsibility for exterior lawn maintenance, they usually
have the equity and credit rating to buy in more luxurious condominiums in
the Diamond Bar, California community for example, where luxurious, 1400
sq. ft, 2 ? bedroom condos with European kitchens start at

Condominiums have proven to be almost as profitable in the last
five years as compared to investments in single family detached
homes. The rate of appreciation of condominiums and single family
detached homes over the last five years has been similar in the
communities of Diamond Bar, Walnut, and Rowland Heights, with
both exceeding 20% annually. However, as the market has cooled
and there has been a price correction in available condominiums,
they still are a very good investment.

One thing to keep in mind is that when you buy a condo, you are
also buying into the entire building, or common areas, in which
your condo is located. As a co-owner of the building, and very
often through the property’s homeowner’s association, you will be
assessed your proportional share of the cost for repairs required in
common areas, such as the roof, heating system, or general
exterior maintenance. These costs need to be factored into your
overall monthly budget.

Condominiums can be a great investment as they can enable the
home buyer the opportunity to live in a much more desirable
neighborhood as well as provide the homeowner the tax benefits
of homeownership. The sale prices for condominiums generally sell
for 20 to 30 percent less than similar detached single family
homes. You will have all the amenities of owning your own home,
but will be able to share the cost of upkeep on the building, roof,
and maintenance. For most buyers priced out of the single family
home market, the choice is to buy a condo that meets their living
needs, builds equity and improves their credit rating– or continue
to rent. The choice seems pretty clear!

Condominiums – Sharing the City

Though condos can built anywhere, perhaps one of the most appealing things about them is that they afford people a high quality lifestyle in expensive high-density areas. Million dollar luxury condos aside, condominiums in desirable areas are typically cheaper than single family homes. If you work and play in the city, buying a condominium can put you in the right place at the right time – all the time.


The term condominium refers to a type of ownership rather than type of unit. Condos can be low-rise, high-rise, lofts, warehouse spaces or ground level town homes. When you buy a condo, you own the unit as well as a share of all common amenities: shared spaces, facilities and services. In some cases, condominium owners also own the land the unit sits on.

Essentially, what’s shared and how it’s shared defines the nature of condominium ownership. In contrast, single family homeowners are wholly responsible for everything themselves. This gives them greater autonomy but also a greater financial burden. Condominium owners on the other hand, pay home association dues or condominium fees that help cover shared costs and labor for the community. These fees cover general maintenance issues like landscaping, exterior paint, heat, water, roofing and insurance along with luxury perks like swimming pools, fitness gyms, saunas, parking garages, security, playgrounds and party rooms.


Though condos can built anywhere, perhaps one of the most appealing things about them is the fact that they afford people a high quality lifestyle in expensive high-density areas. Million dollar luxury condos aside, condominiums in desirable areas are typically much less costly than single family homes. If you work and play in the city, buying a condominium can put you in the right place at the right time – all the time.

A survey of of over one thousand condo owners released by the NAHB in 2007, revealed that for people who purchased condos over the last two years, price and location topped their list of priorities at 70%. This was followed closed by design and size of the unit and the desirability of the neighborhood overall.

So though the pools and workout rooms are absolutely lovely, where you swim and workout still matters a great deal. For people looking to invest and have a greater level of control over where they live than renters, buying urban real estate in the form of condominium ownership is a dream come true.

It’s a fact that Minneapolis’s mix of historic architecture, culture and natural beauty make the downtown core a great place to be. Chosen by Frommers as one of the top places in the world to visit in 2007 – it’s certainly one of the most desirable urban locations in the Northeast. For years, the thriving economy and job market have been attracting young professionals looking for opportunity.

In Minneapolis, developers are continually addressing this demand by building well-designed, affordable condos in the downtown core. Loft apartments, studio spaces and conversions are being snapped up by all kinds of people. Those starting their careers, young families, single men and women and even students who would otherwise be stuck paying rent are venturing into the Minneapolis real estate market. Stylish and affordable downtown condo developments like Olin Crossings are loved for the way they allow people to live and raise their families exactly where they work and play. Forget the suburbs and mind-numbing commutes. With the business district, arts district, walking trails and light rail just steps from the front door what are you waiting for?

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