- The rent can be much cheaper than living alone, although in fancier areas (Ebisu, Omotesando, Roppongi etc..) there may not be that much of a difference.
- There is usually someone to talk with/ watch bad TV with/eat with/ ask for help with ridiculously complicated documents.
- As long as you get along with your sharemates, there will be parties and house-dinners. We throw a little party for each resident's birthday!
- You get to meet new people, and learn new things.
- You get to have a large bathroom and living room, so it doesn't feel cramped like the rabbit-hutch apartments so prevalent in this country.
- In our case we have a nice large garden, and the entrance is also planted with glorious flowers and vegetables, which is really lovely.
- Especially in the winter, utilities can be a bit more expensive (but this depends on the size of the house, and attitudes of your sharemates).
- Privacy can be an issue, although having your own rooms helps a lot.
- Sometimes it can get a bit noisy... in many senses of the word (walls here are pretty thin, hehe).
- Sharing a kitchen means that sometimes it will be rather messy, which drives me up the wall.
- You have to schedule cleaning responsibilities, if not the house will become a mess. Each week one of us is in charge of cleaning everything, and it works fine.
- Sometimes you will have to wait to use the bath/shower.
Personally, I think it is worth it. The possibility of living in a brand new house, with ample space and a social atmosphere is really great, and makes up for the occasional annoyances. Make sure you visit first, and meet the other people who live there!
Below are a few links I used when searching for a sharehouse or roomshare:
On that note, recently the four ladies of my sharehouse (yes, I am included in that definition) decided to go for a blow-out brunch at the Park Hyatt Shinjuku's famous New York Grill. They have a very classy self-serve brunch at the weekends, with a main course you choose off the menu. While rather pricy at 7200 yen, the service, food quality and view are completely worth it!
I mean really... is this not a billion dollar view?
A glorious selection from the appetizer buffet table, followed by fresh linguine with vegetables and green tomato sauce.
The dessert buffet with tea, and myself and Wave-chan being mysterious (but mostly really, really full).