Tanaka 29-1, Tokigawa, Saitama
List Price: ¥19,800,000
Real Estate Agent Brokerage Fee: 3% + ¥66,000 + JCT (10%)
Akiya & Inaka Support Fee: ¥396,000 + JCT (10%)
Tokigawa: All the charms of inaka, a stone’s throw from Tokyo
Saitama is known as Tokyo’s bedroom. For that exact reason, its rural reaches are often overlooked and the deals are surprisingly good.
That said, more and more people are starting to discover the goldmine of inexpensive, well-maintained properties that periodically come onto the market in the foothills of the Chichibu Mountain Range.
Tokigawa’s crown jewel is the Tokigawa River, a crystal clear river that originates in the Chichibu Mountains. Whether it’s fly fishing, swimming, or just getting your feet wet, Tokigawa’s namesake river offers it all.
Access to Tokyo is also surprisingly good, with direct service via bus to Musashi-Ranzan, a major station on the Tobu Tojo Line, which goes direct to Ikebukuro in 1 hour. Via car, Nerima IC on the Kan-Etsu Expressway is about 1 hour away.
Retro Residence & Electric Hardware Shop
Oftentimes when you enter an akiya, it looks like time stopped. This is because oftentimes, the owner is of advanced age, and their family moves them to an elder care facility. The usual case is that the house is filled to the brim with stuff, mostly of the variety that isn’t particularly interesting.
This house has plenty of stuff, but a lot of it belongs in a museum, not the trash bin. Once a shop that sold electrical appliances run by a local electrician, this house is decked out in retro electrical everything to a degree that it’s hard to catalog. From refrigerators to light fixtures, tools, and a workshop worthy of its own YouTube channel, this local electrician must have been a cool dude judging by his interior design choices.
This property has been vacant since around 2019, but it is in excellent condition, having been maintained by the family’s son. Entering into this property is like going back in time to 1970’s Japan, with an interior and exterior that has withstood the test of time and been well maintained.
With a brand new roof on the detached warehouse, which has a few upstairs rooms including an office and what could be a living space, while there are plenty of things that could be upgraded, one could move in tomorrow.
The Magic of Tokigawa
Tokigawa is the gateway to outdoor fun, and one of our favorites. Bicycling, hiking, swimming, and even just walking around is a pleasant experience. Tokigawa is adjacent to the Ranzan Gorge, which was named as such in the Edo Period because of its natural beauty similar to Kyoto’s Arashiyama (same kanji 嵐山, but with a different pronunciation). The autumn foliage is a popular spot for photographers.
Tokigawa also struck hot water gold in 1990 when the municipality bored an onsen hot spring. It is an interesting hot spring, with a pH of 11.3, that makes you feel silky smooth. As a result, Tokigawa Town operates perhaps one of Japan’s coolest niche inventions, an onsen stand where you can fill up your water tanks with the mineral-rich water and add it to your bath at home for a princely 200 yen per 20 liter tank.
If that sounds like too much of a pain, you can head over to Tamagawa Onsen, a local communal bath house with a Showa retro theme, attached restaurant, and a cool bath house themed outdoor relaxation area.