Furnished apartment vs unfurnished apartment in Tokyo: Which one is more reasonable?

If you are moving to Tokyo and are seeking for an apartment to rent, you have two choices:  a furnished apartment or an unfurnished apartment.  Needless to say, the former obviously offers a ready-to-live setting with furniture and appliances, while the latter does not.  Beyond this physical difference that you can perceive at a glance, let’s find out the differences of financial impact between the two choices from a tenant’s point of view.  The financial differences between the two are the followings:

  1. The latter requires furniture/appliances worth 5x it’s rent/month on average (ex. if your monthly rent is 100, furniture costs 500 on average, just a historical evidence),  while the former does not.
  2. the latter requires the upfront costs such as key money, broker fee, etc, while the former does not; and
  3. the former’s rent/month costs more by 0.5x or 50% on average vs the latter’s.

Hence, let’ s put those in a simple way like this:  “unfurnished” costs substantial upfront bills, while “furnished” does not but “furnished” costs more rent/month instead.   Ultimately, this is a question of how long it will take if you go for “unfurnished” to get payback for your initial investment such as furniture and other bills into an “unfurnished” apartment.  A little too complex??  Don’t worry, I did all the math for you, so just take a look at the answer below 🙂



The only number you need to focus is the one at the bottom right corner: 17 months  —- this means it takes 17 months on average to get payback for your upfront investments such as furniture and other bills into an unfurnished apartment.  To sum up,  if you are not sure to live more than 17 months in Japan, you are financially better off going for a “furnished” apartment.

Where can you find the best furnished apartment for yourself?   Visit KaguAruoo.  Check out this blog also on how hassle it is to rent an apartment in Japan, to avoid culture shock in advance!