stigmatized property

Living with ghosts: The rising popularity of ‘death rooms’ in Japan

In Japan, places where people have died are considered bad luck, so unsurprisingly apartments where there has been a suicide, murder, or other death are rented at much cheaper prices than usual due to a lack of demand. However, real estate agencies are seeing a surge in people specifically seeking these kinds of ‘death rooms’. That may sound horribly morbid, but usually it’s not out of a desire to be close to death. Rather, for those who can put aside their culturally-ingrained reservations, it’s a way to  save money during tough times.

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Apartment for rent in Tokyo: bath, toilet, ghost, and kitchen space all included

Japan really knows how to put the stigma into stigmatized properties (homes and rooms to rent where people have committed suicide or are murdered and the like). The fear of moving into such a place and becoming like the guy from The Shining is such that real estate agents find them nearly impossible to unload. Especially with websites mapping out exactly where they are, potential renters and buyers know just where to avoid.

Recently though, a listing appeared on Japanese real estate site SUUMO which attempted a whole new approach to offloading a stigmatized property, with the author trying to convince you, the potential renter, that it’s actually great to live in a place where someone violently died!

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Website Lets You Check if Anyone Was Murdered or Committed Suicide in Your Home

None of us wants to live in an apartment or house where someone was killed, also known as stigmatized properties. It’d be pretty creepy in the least.  However, in Japan the desire to not live in a place like that is so intense that you’d think Poltergeist was a documentary.

Oshima Teru is an up and coming website that also must be a real estate agent’s worst nightmare.  Its main purpose is to map out every property where unnatural deaths occurred. Originally only focusing on the Greater Tokyo Area, they have expanded into nearly worldwide coverage including North America and Europe.

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