Monday, May 10, 2010

My First Real Estate Deal

Yesterday I completed my first real estate deal. It feels like a major life milestone.
The deal won't close until the end of July, but since the loan has been pre-approved and there won't be material change to the application, I expect the process to be smooth.

Above is the contract binder, which was procured by Nomura real estate who are the sellers' agent. It feels quite luxurious with its velvet cover.

Just thought I would note how the contract meeting went:
  • The meeting was arranged by my agent about 1 week earlier.
  • We met at Nomura's office in Kichijoji.
  • I played it safe and wore a suit and tie. The owner's came in fairly plain conservative garb.
  • I swapped meishi's with the Nomura agent and exchanged bows with owner couple both about late 50s.
  • The agent opened the meeting by stating the purpose of the meeting and presented his certification credentials.
  • For the next 45 minutes he read every details of the contract. Land Size, Zoning, water, gas, city plans, deposits. If you are well prepared you should have not any surprises, as most of these points should have been discussed beforehand with your agent. My japanese is about 2-kyu level and I managed to get about 90%. I think the owners looked like they understood about the same amount. Legalese is a language in it's own right :).
  • There were a few minutes of awkward conversation with the owners in between the shuffling of papers. The husband seemed happy to sell. The wife had a serious disappointed look. I expressed how thankful and happy we were to be part of the neighborhood, and how we were looking forward to raise our family there.
  • We spent about 15 minutes putting seals down on document till my fingers were blue and I got lots of practice writing my address in kanji.
  • I handed over my 5% down payment japanese cheque for which I got a ***RECEIPT***.
  • The owners handed over a a brick of cash in an envelope to pay for their agent's fee while my agent looked in envy and I was thinking "who brings so much money in cash, when you can have a cheque for a 840 yen fee?".
  • And that was it. Very smooth though somewhat impersonal.
Below is a shot of the binder again. It's about 2 inches thick with documents and weighs about 3 pounds.


  1. hey by the way I was wondering can you recommend me you agent please , just send me a comment in my blog please

  2. We used Sanryo which is the same company as the builders. You can find it in the Suggested links.
    They only speak Japanese by the way.