Tohoku is literally still waiting to move on

| Mar 5, 2016

Tohoku is literally still waiting to move on

Earlier this month, the NHK travel series, “Tsurube Toasts Families,” in which rakugo (traditional comic storyteller) performer Shofukutei Tsurube and a guest visit a town and talk to residents on an impromptu basis, went to some new communities in the area destroyed by the ...

The ups and downs of apartment elevators

| Feb 6, 2016

The ups and downs of apartment elevators

In the 2014 American movie, “5 Flights Up,” Morgan Freeman and Diane Keaton play an elderly couple who think about selling their two-bedroom Brooklyn apartment. Since they have lived in the unit all their married life, the decision is a difficult one, and the ...

Mounting student debt may cost society dearly

| Jan 23, 2016

Mounting student debt may cost society dearly

The education ministry conducted a survey in 2014 of institutes of higher learning and found that the average yearly tuition for private universities was ¥864,384. In addition, the average “entry fee” (nyūgakukin) was ¥261,089. Adding other expenses, the ministry estimated it cost a student ...

Getting a high rise out of dodging taxes

| Jan 2, 2016

Getting a high rise out of dodging taxes

About a year ago, we talked about using real estate purchases to lower inheritance and gift taxes. Obviously, people who are able to take advantage of these schemes are already well off — the average person doesn’t have to worry about paying inheritance taxes ...