There’s a huge variety of fees that need to be paid when renting a new apartment in Japan. In addition to an advance payment of your first month’s rent, there’s insurance, the security deposit, the realtor’s fee, and the dreaded “key money,” basically a sign-up cost that you pay to the landlord for the privilege of being allowed to start giving him money on a monthly basis.
Add it all up, and you’ll probably find yourself out several months’ worth of rent before spending the first night in your new home. But there’s a nice upside if you chose to go through one unique realtor, because while you’ll still have some fees to pay, you’ll also get a nice housewarming present in the form of several hundred dollars’ worth of anime merchandise.
Differentiating yourself and picking a target market are dependable strategies for succeeding in business. Tokyo-based real estate agency Nyanpochi has done both by tailoring its services to anime fans, and in a way that goes beyond just decorating its website with cute illustrations.
▼ Of course, it’s done that too with its mascot catgirls Pochi, Mike, and Maro.
When singing a lease for a new apartment, a realtor’s fee equal to one month’s rent is pretty standard, although in some cases that might be knocked down to half a month’s rent. What makes Nyanpochi a great place for apartment-hunting otaku is that the company will also give you points redeemable for your choice of merchandise from anime interior retailer Curtain Damashii. Depending on the exact property, the voucher will be equal to either half a month’s or a full month’s rent, which means you could possible end up receiving more in anime goodies than you’re paying in realtor’s fees.
So what kind of stuff can you get from Curtain Damashii? Well, since the company’s name means “Curtain Spirit,” of course you can find curtains, from series such as Puella Magi Madoka Magica…
…Is It Wrong to Try to Pick Up Girls in a Dungeon?/Danmachi…
…and Sword Art Online.
Fujoshi, on the other hand, might be more tempted by these Token Rambu and Black Butler drapes.
Or, if you’re more into games than anime, you could adorn your walls with art from RPG-master Falcom’s Kiseki series, which made its English-language debut under the title Trails in the Sky.
Curtain Damashii also sells anime-themed pillow covers, bedsheets, and shower curtains, and yes, for those who never plan on having non-otaku guests over, some of them contain a half-naked anime girl frolicking on the beach, soaking in a hot spring, or sitting on a toilet (we kid you not). On the other hand, Curtain Damashii’s catalogue contains enough tastefully reserved options to fully cover all the windows in your new place.
Because hey, even if you’re too strapped for cash to go out and have fun after just moving to a new apartment, at least Nyanpochi will help surround you with artwork to admire while you settle in.