Campus Life

Private Housing

  • Updated on March 1, 2016


Due to the increasing number of international students, Kobe University cannot provide a dorm room for every student. Apart from the university dormitories, private apartments are also available.
"Kobe University Student Apartment Search System" enables international students to look for an apartment from abroad before arriving in Japan. Tentative reservation and inquiries in 4 languages (Japanese, English, Chinese and Korean) are also available.

"KOBE UNIVERSITY Student Apartment Search System" is the information retrieval system launched in collaboration with Kobe University and National Student Information Center (Nasic). All information available in this system is attributed to Nasic and has no relation to Kobe University. Any inquiries concerning apartments or applications, please contact Nasic.

Upon renting an apartment, a student is usually required to pay a security deposit and 2-3 months of rent as a key money. For particular terms and meanings used for housing, please see below.
In Japan, a guarantor is also required to rent a private apartment. If a student cannot find one, please readhere.

Terms and meanings used for housing

Shiki-kin (security deposit)

Shiki-kin (security deposit)Shiki-kin is a security deposit on renting an apartment. Upon vacating the room, the landlord usually takes a certain amount of money from shiki-kin, which is called shiki-biki, and return what is left to the renter. If the renter falls behind in the rent payment or destroy/damage something in the apartment, a greater amount will be deducted from shiki-kin.
The amount which will be returned after vacating the room=shiki-kin - shiki-biki - repairing fees

Rei-kin (key money)

Rei-kin or "thank-you money" is the amount paid to the landlord when the renter first rents the apartment. It is usually equivalent to 1-2 months’ rent and will not be returned upon vacating the apartment.

Tetsuke-kin (deposit)

Tetsuke-kin is a deposit when renter makes a contract. Once the renter pays a deposit on the apartment, no one else can rent it. Upon signing the lease agreement, tetsuke-kin will be incorporated in the shiki-kin. Even if the renter decides not to make a contact, the tetsuke-kin will not refunded.

Kyoueki-hi (common area charge)

Kyoueki-hi is a monthly payment for the costs of electricity and cleaning of common area such as the entrance and hallways of the apartment complex.

Tesuu-ryo (commission charge)

Tesuu-ryo is a commission for the private real estate agent who successfully helped the renter sign the lease agreement of the apartment. The maximum set by the Japanese law is the equivalent to a month’s rent and this is usually the amount required.

Rentai-hosyounin (guarantor)

In Japan, a guarantor is usually required to rent an apartment. If any events happen to the debtor (=renter), the guarantor will bear a full responsibility instead of the debtor (=renter). For example, if the landlord (=debtee) faces a problem, such as the debtor (=renter) is unable to pay the rent or he/she is disappeared without a notice, the guarantor will have to pay the remaining rent or pick up the debtor’s (=renter’s) belongings.

Mae-yachin (advance deposit)

Mae-yachin is to pay the next month’s rent by the end of the previous month. A renter should be aware that this mae-yachin (advance deposit) system is adopted in most of the Japanese private housings. Therefore, the renter needs to inform the landlord of his/her leaving more than a month in advance, otherwise, he/she will be charged for the extra rent.