Rising Land Prices in Japan's Regional Areas

Rising Land Prices in Japan's Regional Areas:
Tokyo, Osaka and Nagoya

Land price increase in metropolitan cities

Average land prices in Japan’s regional areas rose for the first time in 31 years, thanks to thriving major cities outside the three largest metropolitan areas, according to a land ministry report released on Sept. 19.

The average land prices across the country also rose for the second year in a row.

As of July 1, the average price for residential, commercial and industrial land outside the areas of Tokyo, Osaka and Nagoya increased by 0.3 percent.

The increase was driven by the four metropolitan areas of Sapporo, Sendai, Hiroshima and Fukuoka, which saw an 8.1 percent increase.

Offering greater career and educational opportunities, these cities experienced rises in land prices in the 4 to 6 percent range even during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Redevelopment projects in recent years have also attracted residents and businesses to the cities.

Another factor is that land prices in the regional areas outside the four cities, which had been declining for 30 years, showed signs of improvement.

Of 38 regional prefectures, 27 recorded a decline in their overall land prices. However, 20 prefectures saw the figures increase or remain unchanged in their capitals.

The rise in land prices in prefectural capitals was partly due to people moving into central city areas, which offer greater transportation links and amenities.

In addition, the government’s initiative to attract semiconductor plants to manufacture next-generation chips has led to a continued surge in land prices around the planned sites in Chitose, Hokkaido, and Kikuyo, Kumamoto Prefecture.

For both residential and commercial land values, about half of the top 10 areas where land prices are rapidly rising are related to the semiconductor sector.

However, these are exceptions as land prices have been declining in most regional areas.

On a national average, prices rose 0.7 percent compared to 0.1 percent in 2022 for residential property. For commercial property, the figure was 1.5 percent compared to 0.5 percent last year.

The Meidi-ya Ginza commercial building site in Tokyo’s Ginza shopping district extended its record as Japan’s most expensive real estate for the 18th consecutive year, with one square meter at the site being valued at 40.1 million yen ($271,000).

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