The title of this blog post came from one of those novelty checkbooks. (Remember writing checks to pay for things? I do!)
Today, I spent more in 2 hours than I have ever spent in a month...$11,700.
No, really. I did.
The thing about renting a house in Japan, is there are all sorts of fees for all sorts of things...you know how in the States, you can expect to pay first month's rent, perhaps last month's, and a security deposit? Well, those all exist here, too. In addition to first month's rent and an exorbitant security deposit (the equivalent of 2 month's rent), there is a restoration fee-to replace the tatami mats, shoji doors & fusuma doors when you move out. And also, the realtor's fee, which is 10% of a year's rent. It adds up; 120,000 yen/month for rent (about $1600 with the current exchange rate), plus all the other stuff...it cost us $8,500.00 just to move in.
Of course, we also needed to buy a car. We are now the proud owners of a 1998 Nissan Cube. It cost us $2,800. Then there is insurance...luckily this is pretty cheap in Japan, so our one-year policy only cost $400.
Still, having just spent a LOT to secure a house & transportation, it kinda hurts. When I looked at my bank balance this afternoon, it was hard not to whimper a bit.
Move-in tomorrow; unfortunately the internet service will not be installed until November (the company is running new fiber lines to the Cho). So my posts, however infrequent, will become more so.