You’ve got your visa and maybe found a job already. Congratulations!
Now you should look for a place to stay.
If you don’t speak japanese well (or not at all), or if you don’t want to spend too much money for accomodation, you have mainly two solutions.
GUEST (or GAIJIN) HOUSES
Guest houses are pretty useful for those who want to find a room quickly and at a reasonable place. Many of them don’t ask for a deposit or guarantor, and they’re usually furnished and offering free internet access. The minimal stay length is about just a month, so it’s pretty flexible.
Monthly fees (all charges included) mostly stand in the 60-80.000 yen range. It may be a little less or a little more at times. Such prices remain very reasonable compared to the price of appartments (especially in Tokyo).
Where can you find guest houses? We recommend you to have a look at serious websites like Oakhouse or Sakura House , offering a great variety of guest houses. You should be able to find all kinds of house styles and prices!
An even simplier solution is to find someone you can share a room with. It may be a good solution to save money and meet new people!
Once again, we’ll recommend you to use your personal network wisely. Try to get to know gaijins like you, and you may find one who would be happy to share accomodation costs with you! Attending parties and getting in touch with the friends of your friends should prove to be efficient.
If it doesn’t work (or if you’re associal?), you can try to find a roommate through the internet. Jobs in Japan displays some offers at times, as well as the online edition of the Tokyo Notice Board. If you’re looking for someone who shares rooms, you can post an ad for free on these two websites. (in TNB case, your ad will even be printed!)
These two solutions are, in our opinion, the easiest (and cheapest?) ways to get a home in Japan.
If you have any other ideas, or if you’re sharing a room/looking for someone to share a room, feel free to use our comments!