So here I am. A Bona fide Japanese landlord. An Ooya san as they say here. According to most foreigners, landlords in Japan are all racist xenophobes who extort large amounts of money from you and who will throw you out on the street at the slightest provocation. Here's my take on this...
The western countries all have legislation which prohibits discrimination against various minorities and gives protection from exploitation which all looks very well and good from the ivory towers of the people who dreamt it up but in reality its complete bullshit. What actually happens is that it forces landlords to waste everybodys time and to lie to people instead of telling them the truth. For example, I cant stand the smell of curry. Or Kimchi. Or marijuana. Anybody who habitually eats curry or Kimchi or regularly smokes dope has got sod all chance of renting a house from me. I obviously don't want someone who is a deadbeat no hoper with no money to pay the rent so I won't have any struggling artists or aspiring poets. Wannabe cult leaders and new age spiritual guru's are definitely out...look what happened at Waco Texas. I also don't want 27 people living in my 3 bedroom house. Kiwi's and Aussies overseas would have to be the worst offenders in the world for this. Just ask any landlord in London. I don't want full time party animals who will vomit on my tatami and piss the neighbours off. So that pretty much rules out all Western and Latin American foreigners under the age of 25. I don't want any Cats, Dogs, Rabbit's or any other animals inside. Nor do I want any people with "special needs" who will hack my house to bits in order to create the "modifications" they need for their lifestyle. I don't care that you are Gothic Bondage Dungeon mistress...you're not screwing hooks into my ceiling.
In NZ I would need to lie to all these people about why they can't stay at my place because if I told the truth there would be a lot of Indians, Koreans, Rastafarian's, artists, poets, priests, cultists, antipodean backpackers, ravers, animal libbers and sex industry workers screaming about racism, sexism, ageism, fatism, speciesism (I might have made that one up) and just about every other -ism that you can think of.
So as you can see I've covered all contingencies by discriminating against people because of their culture, nationality, age, economic class, religion, sexual orientation and animal ownership status. Is this all a bit discriminatory? Probably. (I like to think of it as equal opportunity discrimination though) Is it Unfair? possibly. Do I give a fuck? Absolutely not. It's my house and I'll damn well choose who I want to live in it. If I want to put "no foreigners" in my criteria then I will. I believe Its my right and its one of the reasons I choose to be a landlord in Japan...And to anybody who objects to it I say this to them...Grow up and buy your own house if you don't like it or go back home where it's your legally enshrined right to whine about it. Rant over.
Now having said all that I intend to be a good landlord, quite unlike the miserable old bugger I rent a warehouse from at home in NZ. He is the master of the fob off and the change of subject whenever the issue of maintenance comes up. If the roof leaks I will be onto that sucker quick smart. If the drains block I'll just call the plumber. The way I see it is the house is an investment and to protect that investment you need to do some maintenance on it. You also want to have a happy tenant who will stay there forever. If a tenant is late with the rent I won't sling them out straight away, as long as they communicate with me.
The tenant moved in about 12 months ago and has been good so far. She is a single mother of 2 boys in their early teens. She gets some kind of benefit from the government so doesn't work. They are all very polite and well mannered and have kept the place clean and tidy. One thing that does irritate me a little are the small dog's in the front yard. She kind of slipped that one past me. No sign of any Kiwis sleeping on the floor though.
But most importantly, she pays the rent.