Property I by and

Homes in the Japanese countryside are selling for as little as $500

 

Japan is hoping to tackle its vacant home problem by listing its rural properties for sale – at rock bottom prices.

There are an estimated eight million unoccupied houses in the country – known as akiya – and the figure has only grown in recent years. It’s a particular problem for Japan’s rural prefectures, which are seeing the biggest rise in empty properties.

Akiya in Osaka - a large plot of rural land
Osaka akiya; only the original gatehouse remains on this rural plot of land, for sale for 500m yen. Via Akiya-athome.com

A new government-led programme is aiming to get new owners inside these abandoned homes, by offering them at hugely reduced prices and with renovation subsidies for their revival and adaptive reuse. In Okutama, which is located west of Tokyo, the price tag drops to zero for its dilapidated homes.

Vacant akiya in Hirado City, Nagasaki prefecture for sale for 13m yen.Via Akiya-athome.com

Interested buyers can browse ‘akiya banks’ (like this one) which list available abandoned houses for sale. And for anyone headquartered in Tokyo, a separate programme is offering a cash grant to workers to encourage remote working in the countryside.

Homes in this tiny Italian village now cost just €1

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