This month saw an increase in inquiries from people looking for student and budget-friendly apartments in and around Tokyo, as might be expected with news of the easing of border restrictions.

Below are the top three stations that received For Rent applications this month from students and young professionals looking for budget-friendly options.

  1. Matsudo
  2. Ichikawa
  3. Hachioji

#1 Matsudo – JR Joban Line in Chiba

Our featured property this month in Matsudo is a 1K 2nd floor apartment for rent 9 minutes walk from Matsudo station. The total monthly cost is ¥42,649 (about $375 USD). No deposit, no key money, no agency fees. Available through the GaijinPot Housing Service. Click on the photo for the full range and for more info! Image: HIRO Corporation

Matsudo is number one this month for price-conscious apartment seekers!

Matsudo is a station on the JR Joban Line known for its convenient location between the major stations in Tokyo and Chiba. Nathan, from the GaijinPot Housing Service and a long-time resident of Chiba, has written an excellent article on Matsudo here. What does Matsudo look like, from a local’s perspective?

“A good thing about Matsudo is that it is less densely packed compared to Funabashi, Kashiwa and of course Tokyo. You have much more space for walking, cycling or even the car if that is your mode of transport. Casually speaking, I would describe it as a place with a very “comfortable” atmosphere. It’s a really good balance between having everything you need close to where you live, but also not being too busy.” Read the rest of his review here!

Matsudo is especially recommended for people who work or study in the Ochanomizu, suidobashi, and To wear neighborhoods, where there is a very high concentration of university campuses and vocational schools.

It is a 31-minute direct commute from Matsudo to Shin-Ochanomizu Station on the JR Joban Line (then about a 3-minute walk to Ochanomizu Station itself).

Universities in the Shin-Ochanomizu and Ochanomizu neighborhoods include: Meiji University, Ochanomizu University, and Digital Hollywood University.

#2 Ichikawa – JR Chuo Sobu Line in Chiba

Our recommended home in Ichikawa this month is a very bright and clean 1R apartment for rent, 4 minutes walk from Ichikawa Station. The total monthly cost is ¥55,000 ($483 USD). No security deposit, no key money, no security deposit. Available from December 20, 2021. Inquire now for a room view! Click on the photo for more information. Image: Aonissin

Interior, image: Aonissin

At number two this month for student and budget-friendly stations is Ichikawa, in the city of Ichikawa, Chiba.

Ichikawa is a station on the main east-west line in Tokyok: the JR Chuo-Sobu Line. This gives you direct access to major stations along the Chuo-Sobu Line, including Akihabara, Suidobashi and Shinjuku towards Tokyo, all the way to Mitaka in western Tokyo; and Nishi Funabashi, Funabashi and Chiba in the east.

Ichikawa is very convenient for people who commute to schools and offices in suidobashi. It is about a 28 minute direct ride from Ichikawa to Suidobashi.

Universities in Suidobashi include: the Tokyo Dental College Suidobashi Campus, Tokyo Dental College Junior College, Chuo University Korakuen Campus, Toyo Gakuen University Hongo Campus, Nihon University College of Economics, Nihon University School of Law, and Senshu University Kanda Campus) ; and many vocational and packed schools.

#3 Hachioji – JR Chuo Main, JR Chuo Rapid and JR Yokohama lines in Hachioji

1R apartment for rent near Hachioji Station. The total monthly cost is ¥40,800 ($359 USD). No key money. This property is available through the GaijinPot Housing Service, which means you can pay for everything with a credit card and apply from abroad. Click on the photo for the full range and to contact the Housing Service team. Image: SkyCourt Chintai Center KK

At number three this month is Hachioji, in the western suburb of Tokyo, Hachioji (city, so).

Hachioji is a residential area that is popular with people who want a viable commute to the city but want to live closer to nature. All the while, there are plenty of urban amenities near a major station like Hachioji.

For our full city guide, see the Hachioji Area Guide.

Here’s what our local guide has to say about this highly livable suburb: “Hachioji Station itself is surrounded by department stores – the same as any major station in Tokyo. However, once you start drifting away from the station, you may find yourself surrounded by a wealth of flora and fauna. If you choose to live in this area, you are just minutes away from Mount Takao (a popular day trip destination for Tokyoites) – the great outdoors is on your doorstep in this neighborhood.”

Rent is quite affordable in the Hachioji area. This can be a bargain if your work or school is also nearby.

  • Studio/1K ¥56,300/month (About $530 assuming exchange rate of ¥106/US dollar)
  • 1LDK/2DK/2K ¥88,400 (about $830)
  • 2LDK / 3DK / 3K 118,400 (~$1110)

on Real Estate Japan, you can find much cheaper options than the average numbers listed above.

Hachioji is the terminal station on the JR Yokohama Line, so commuting to Shinjuku is convenient (about a 35-minute drive). You can probably get a seat in the morning, but maybe not on the return journey!

If you are looking for an apartment in Japan (whether you are applying from abroad or are already in the country), check out the GaijinPot Housing Service. With the GaijinPot Housing Service:

  • You can choose from over 3,000 properties across Japan.
  • No guarantor needed.
  • Can apply from abroad.
  • Pay all your start-up and monthly fees with a credit card.
  • Receive full English service, from the room view, to the post-move support request.

Learn more about the GaijinPot housing service

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Main photo: You will find platforms for the JR Chuo Line (Rapid), JR Chuo Main Line and JR Yokohama Line at Hachioji Station. photo by Scott Kouchic.