My name is Hidetaka Ko, and I am the representative of Homii.
Thank you for interesting in Homii. (You might be interested in living Homestay)
Homii is a new service that will help you experience the new homestay living.
The website matches guests who are looking for a place to live in Japan with hosts who want to provide a room at their own home. Homii is more than just “a homestay matching service for international students”, it is a service that allows you to live in Japan for as little as one month. Airbnb has made “staying in other people’s houses” a culture, and we at Diverseas aim to make “living in other people’s houses” a culture with Homii.
In this article,
- Why we started Homii
- Why we want to recommend Homii to you and not other housing options when you are considering a home
**What kind of world are we aiming for? **
I’d like to explain the three points I couldn’t complete on the website.
- For working people who want to work in Japan but haven’t found a place to live yet.
- For international students who want to study in Japan but have not yet found a place to live.
- For international students and working people who are already living in Japan but are considering moving
- We want to help our guests who want to stay in Japan and learn more about our guests who used Homii! And people who thinking about welcoming a host.
I hope that you would read it:
- Self Introduction
- Six issues foreigners face when looking for a home in Japan
- Why we want to recommend Homii to foreigners and not other housing options
- Introduction of our past guests
- What kind of world do we, Homii, aim for?
Why we started Homii
I was born and raised in Japan, but I’m actually Korean and a foreigner. I went to college at Doshisha University in Kyoto. At Doshisha University, I belonged to an organization that supported my friends who had come from abroad to study at our school. I also spent two years studying abroad in California, USA during my sophomore year of college.
When I was studying in the United States, the hardest part for me was finding a home. The average rent in California was too expensive and the lease term basically lasted over a year and it required a deposit. In addition, there were hard times when I had no place to live due to the delay in receiving scholarships. Then when I studied abroad at Doshisha University, and my friend Marcus, who was a student at Stanford University at the time, let me live in his dormitory room for free.
However, it wasn’t just the fact that it was cheaper to live there that was a good thing. I learned a lot by living with American friends who worked hard in a completely different environment than the one I was in at a Japanese university, an American university. In the beginning, there were many things I didn’t understand in a foreign country, so I was a little nervous at times, but thanks to the help of many friends, including Marcus, my study abroad in the U.S. became a wonderful experience. In fact, this experience is the starting point for Homii.
2. 6 issues the guests are facing in Japan
Marcus loved Japan so much that he worked as an English teacher in Tottori Prefecture after graduating from college in the US with the JET program. At the same time, I was also looking for friends to help me get back to Japan to start a business after I finished my studies. It was at that time that I invited Marcus to join the team and Marcus joined the company.
In the process of helping Marcus find a home, I have found that the living environment in Japan is not easy for foreigners. In the process of creating Homii, we interviewed dozens of foreign guests looking for a home in Japan, and found out that foreigners face the following 5 issues when looking for a home in Japan.
- Foreigners are not allowed (discrimination).
There are many elderly Japanese owners who have a prejudice against foreigners. According to [Report on Survey of Foreign Residents of the Ministry of Justice Commissioned Research Project] (http://www.moj.go.jp/content/001226182.pdf), of the 2,000 foreigners who have looked for a house in the past five years, 41.2% had been refused by landlords because they did not have a Japanese guarantor, 39.3% had been refused because they were foreigners, and 26.8% had given up because they had seen properties marked “No Foreigners”.
- Most of the information is in Japanese, so they can’t understand it.
Most Japanese real estate is not English-speaking. Both the property information and the contents of the contract are written in Japanese. Because of this, we found that many of our guests who are coming to Japan at the right time have trouble understanding the language because it is too difficult to understand.
3.Cost (security deposit, utilities, furniture) is too high.
The average rent in Tokyo is high. If it’s just the rent, that’s fine, but many properties in Japan have a deposit reikin. Explanation of the deposit and key money. It is said that many foreigners are perplexed by the shikikin-ryikin, because it is an unfamiliar culture overseas. In addition to the security deposit and key money, you will also need to sign a contract for communication, electricity, water, etc., which of course costs money.
On top of that, you’ll also need furniture. If you add them all up, you’ll need about 300,000 plus monthly rent when you move in. Payment methods are also a problem, and I’ve heard that in many cases, cash transfers are required. I’ve heard that foreigners who have just arrived in Japan only have accounts in their home countries and cannot make payments. It turns out that there are so many foreigners who are suffering from this high cost.
5. 1~2 year contract is the basic and the contract is not flexible.
It’s the same in the U.S., but when you rent a property in Japan, most of the time you have to sign a one to a two-year contract. If you cancel the contract within the contract period, it is common for you to pay a penalty. Even if you sign a 1-2 year contract, you can’t tell if you’ll like the house until you actually live there. We also don’t know when we’re going to be transferred, so shouldn’t we want to experience in our homes like Netflix, where we can decide to charge by the month?
6. I can’t make Japanese friends.
I’ve heard this story a lot as well. She (our guest) says that coming to Japan means resetting the relationships she has originally cultivated in her home country from scratch, so there are many scenes where she feels uneasy. Then it’s better to have a share house. It’s not a complete solution either. In the case of a shared house, there are certain troubles and you are more likely to make friends with international students than with local Japanese people. But what people from overseas are looking for is a relationship where they can learn Japanese and a local friend or family member who can teach them about the deep culture of Japan.
Why we want to recommend Homii to you and not the other way around
3. Why we want to recommend Homii to you and not the other way around
This is because we believe that by providing an opportunity for people to have a “second family” at Homii, we can solve the problems of people coming to Japan from abroad. We believe that the traditional homestay style of living can be an option for both working people and Japanese people, not just international students.
This is because, when compared to other means, Homii has the following advantages
- More than 500 hosts nationwide who welcome foreigners, not refusing foreigners
- Not only Japanese but also multi-language support, including English, from the website to the customer service to the content of the contract
- There is no need to pay any initial fees for rent, security deposit, utilities, and furniture. Even more discounts on skill sharing. **
- Instead of on-site visits, bank transfers, and cash payments, everything is online, from contracting to communication to payment.
- Flexible contract with a minimum of 1 month instead of a 1 to 2 year contract
- You will be able to learn Japanese language and culture through in-depth exchanges with people who have lived in the area for a long time and know Japanese culture.
What do you think? For our customers, Homii takes away the disadvantages of long-term contracts from traditional homestay services and Airbnb and combines them into one. Here’s why we define Homii as “a new service that updates the traditional homestay”.
4. Introduction of past cases
However, if you’ve never heard of Homii before, you might think that we’re just saying it for our own convenience. In this chapter, I would like to highlight some of the guests and fascinating hosts who have used Homii in the past.
1. Study abroad case, Sarah and her host
Homii is the best way to learn Japanese! I came to Japan to study language in my gap year. After school, my host taught me how to cook Japanese food like takoyaki. Also, we went to bouldering and hiking together. I’m having a wonderful experience which I couldn’t get if I stayed in a guest house. I’m so grateful to Homii team to give me this opportunity.
Chiaki’s house here!
2. Working holiday case, Cecil’s host, Tomoko & Rinka
We were so lucky to meet Tomoko-san and Rinka, and to be with a Japanese family. It is the best way to discover a country and a culture we think. Tomoko-san welcomed us as we were family and we felt so comfortable with all of them. We enjoyed studying Japanese and teaching French with Rinka. We also cooked and went to many places together. It was so much fun!! The house is so close to everywhere like Shibuya, Shinjuku. We could even walk there. I walked around every day to see Tokyo and we really liked it! Stayed only one month, but it was a great experience for us and we will definitely come back to see Tomoko and Rinka! Also, the Homii team did a really great job and accompanied us with every part of our travel. We are so grateful for their help and support.
Tomoko and Rinka’s house here!
3. Case of the couple, Rafaela and her host, Masami
It’s been our dream to live in Japan one day since we visited Japan for our honeymoon. I love traditional culture, so I’m so happy that I live in a Japanese old style house with kind support from my host Masami. She is my Japanese mother!
Masami’s house here!
4. The case of a social worker, Marcus and his host, Aso
You can see Aso’s house here.
And what kind of world are we aiming for?
5. What kind of world do we aspire to?
Thank you for reading this far. I would be happy if there is even a small increase in interest in Homii as a result of reading the text. Finally, let me just tell you what kind of world we are aiming for, and what values we are running our platform.
Life in the mix makes the world a richer place
You’ll get a new place to live and interact with people you’ve never had a connection with.
These two things have the potential to change our values in a big way. No matter how many books you read or how much you go online, you can’t change people’s values, including your own, with the understanding of your brain alone. We believe that you can change your values by actually experiencing and experiencing them. We believe that you can only experience what you see and feel when you go and live there.
All of our members who run Homii have experience of interacting with people from diverse backgrounds abroad. That’s why all of them have had life enriching experiences abroad, and because they’re living under the same roof with Homii, they’re complete strangers with no ties of origin or blood. They may have nothing in common at all in terms of age or occupation, let alone nationality. We hope that through Homii, new connections and values will be created.
Our Homii & Gokei
The key to Homii is mutual trust, a culture that has not yet existed in the world, and the creation of Homii cannot be achieved by the power of one person alone. I believe that the strength of the team that supports the company is the most important thing. We also believe it’s important to build great relationship values not only with the company team, but also with the hosts and guests who support Homii and create a community and product together. That’s why the values of Our Homii and Gokei are so important to us at Homii.
We’d love it if you identify with the world and values that Homii is aiming for.
FREE STAY LOTTERY
**then we explain like this, on FB, Insta, or paid AdsIf you share our post and tag 3 friends, you will have a chance to join our lottery ticket for 1 free month homestay with our lovely host.
**if you want to make it more extreme then: we can have them tag more friends like “Have 1 more entry for every 4 individual friends you tag in our post.”