So I’ve spent most of my weekend looking for apartments to live in.
I’ve found two places that, at first glance, were very very nice. Both of them are about the same in terms of rent and availability of shops (supermarket, drugstores, banks, post offices, etc). Both are also very new and well maintained.
The first one is a very large 2LDK (meaning two rooms, a living room and a dining room/kitchen), one of the rooms is a tatami room. It has plenty of space for a large living room, a study, my bedroom and a “place stuff here” room. Another big plus is that it doesnt require almost none of the large initial sum of money that is usually needed for renting an apartment in Japan. For only 2 times the rent as the initial fee, this baby is all mine. The negative part, big negative, is that it is 4 km from the tsukuba station, and 7 km from my workplace. This means a 20 minute bycicle ride to the station, 30 for work, every day, each way. It is not such a big problem in terms of going to work, since there are buses for the rainy days… but it will be kinda hard to have Tokyo friends over in such a faraway place, so my gaming parties might take a hit.
The other is a very nice apartment in the 12th floor of a building. The building is within spitting distance of the Midorino Station, in the TX line. While this means paying the train to get to the uni, it also means very little rain related problems, and my friends can get to my room that much easier. Also the building itself is quite nice, with pretty halls and stuff. The apartment itself, while also a 2LDK, is a bit smaller than the previous one. I would have my own room, but the study room would be kinda merged with the living room, and no “stuff room” would be available. The bad point, though, is that all the traditional “lost money” costs of entering a rental contract in japan are in place, and I would have to pay about 5 times the rent to enter this place.
So, having a place accessible to my friends is a very big deal for me, but is being close to the station worth 200.000 yens? That is my big dilemma.
Also, In the beginning of the post, I said “at first glance”. The rent for both apartments is about 80.000 yens. From my tokyoite perspective, this is a very reasonable rent. I used to pay the same for an apartment in tokyo that, while great, was smaller and in worse condition. On the other hand, tonight some folks in Tsukuba told me that this is too much to pay for an 2LDK around here, specially both being so far from Tsukuba station itself. So while this morning I was quite happy in having a pleasant dilemma to decide on, now I am thinking if I should spend more time looking for an apartment. But since this is the height of apartment hunting season in Japan, that might be a bit difficult, and would probably mean more time in my “hotel room”…
Aaargh! What to do?