Will the company pay for your residence? Housing and Rent Subsidy Programs in Japan

For foreigners, finding a place to live in a foreign country or region where they do not know the conditions for renting and are not familiar with the area can be a challenge. In Japan, some companies have a program to support the housing of their employees, which can be a great help for foreign employees. Particularly in many IT companies, which are facing a shortage of human resources, are focusing on a program to support housing and rent as part of their benefit package for employees. In this article, we will explain how this program, which reduces the burden of housing costs from an economic point of view.


Each company can have its own housing and rent subsidy program

The housing and rent subsidy programs are set up by each company to help employees with their housing expenses, and are not legally set in a uniform manner. The conditions differ from company to company, and of course some companies do not have a program.

According to the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare (MHLW), 45.8% of all companies provide some form of housing benefit. However, a higher percentage (56.0%) of companies in IT-related and telecommunications industries provide housing benefits.

When you compare terms and conditions for choosing a company, you need to consider not only the salary amount, but also whether the company has a good housing subsidy program. If you are a foreign IT engineer who would like to change jobs in Japan using the housing subsidy program, register with GitTap, a job site for foreign IT professionals. Start by signing up.

Examples of housing and rent subsidy programs

There are several patterns of housing and rent subsidy programs in Japanese companies. We will discuss and explain some of the most typical cases of these housing subsidy programs.

1.Rent subsidy (housing benefit)

Rent subsidy (housing benefit) is the most common type of housing subsidy program in which the company provides a portion of the employee’s housing cost as a benefit. For example, if an employee is living in a rented house, the company will subsidize a percentage of the rent, or subsidize the mortgage of the house the employee owns. The conditions and amount of the subsidy will vary by company, so be sure to check the conditions carefully when signing the labor contract.

Payment conditions and amount

For example, there are many cases where the company provides rent subsidies with conditions such as “X yen per month will be paid to the employee who lives within X kilometers of the company,” “the employee must live in a place where they can commute to the company within X minutes,” or “the employee must live within X stations of the nearest station to the company.” There are also companies that require a certain number of years of continued service, such as “X number of years of service with the company” as a condition for payment.

In some cases, you must be the contractor or head of household of the rental property. For example, if you are living with your girlfriend or sharing a room with a friend, and you are not the contractor or head of the household, you should check beforehand if you are eligible for the benefit.

The amount to be paid varies by company. For example, in many cases, the company will set a percentage of the rent to be paid, such as “50% of the rent”, and then the maximum amount is set.

Overall, the amount paid is decreasing, but the amount paid in the IT sector is higher than the average.

According to the Comprehensive Survey on Working Conditions (FY2015) by the Ministry of Health, Labor and Welfare, the average monthly housing benefit per person is 17,000 yen. Overall, the amount of housing-related benefits is on a downward trend in the cost of benefits provided by companies (results of the Japan Business Federation’s FY2018 survey on employee benefit costs), but in the IT-related and other telecommunications industries, the amount is 25,312 yen per month, much higher than the average. This reflects the recent trend of a shortage of human resources in the IT industry, and shows that more companies are increasing the benefits of housing benefits in order to bring in talented people.

2.Rented company housing

Rented company housing is a program in which the company rents a property and the employees live in the rented housing. The employee pays a portion of the rent, but the company subsidizes a certain percentage of the rent, so the employee can live in the housing at a lower cost than renting on their own. Also, since the company signs the lease contract, employees do not have to sign the contract themselves. This is also a great advantage for foreign employees, as it saves them the trouble of searching for a room.

In the past, it was common for companies to rent out entire apartments or condominiums on a large scale and then rent each unit to employees, but recently, there are more cases where employees themselves search for a property that meets their requirements and rent it under the company’s name.

3.Employee dormitory

An employee dormitory is a facility or building provided by a company for employees to live in. In some cases, the rooms are equipped with furniture and appliances, and meals are provided. In most cases, the rent is reasonable and includes food and other expenses, allowing you to save on living expenses.

However, due to the difficulty of maintaining privacy among employees, employee dormitories have tended to be shunned in recent years. In addition, many employee dormitories were built during the period of rapid economic growth and have become decrepit, so the number of companies with employee dormitories is on the decline.

The size and layout of the housing to be provided

In most cases, the size and layout of rented company housing and employee dormitories are provided according to the number of people in the household, whether they are single or married with a family.

For example, rented company housing/employee dormitory provided for single employees are usually single-room, 1K, or 1DK layouts with room sizes ranging from 6 to 8 tatami mats (10m2 to 14m2). On the other hand, rented company housing/employee dormitory for a married employee and their families of three to four people generally have floor plans of around 2DK to 3LDK (19.4㎡ to 23.4㎡).

Comparing the above-mentioned benefits from 1 to 3, it should be noted that in the case of 1, rent subsidies are provided in addition to the monthly salary and are subject to taxation due to the increase in total income, which also increases the tax and insurance cost for employees. On the other hand, in the case of 2 (rented company housing) and 3 (employee dormitory), a certain amount of rent is deducted from the salary and paid to the company, so there is no increase in the employee’s own tax payment or insurance cost.


Especially when you start working in a new place, you will want to keep your expenses as low as possible until your job is on track and your life is stable. By using subsidies such as rent subsidies (housing benefits), rented company housing, and employee dormitories, you may be able to reduce your rent burden and successfully keep the cost of living in Japan down.

When researching employment in Japan, be sure to check whether there is a housing subsidy system. Also, since the criteria vary from company to company, check with your personnel officer for details on the conditions of those subsidies.

The post Will the company pay for your residence? Housing and Rent Subsidy Programs in Japan first appeared on GitTap BLOG.

Recommend blog list


Job seeker (IT engineer)

Explaining the Visa and Status of Residence Required for IT Engineers Working in Japan for the First Time

This section explains what procedures and visas are required in order to work as an IT engineer in Japan. These procedures are very complicated and are divided into two categories: those to be completed before entering Japan and those to be completed after entering Japan. In addition, it takes time from the moment you apply to the moment you receive the results of your application, so you need to allow plenty of time for the process. In this article, I will introduce the smoothest and most common procedure. For exceptions and details, please refer to the links provided. What you can learn from this article Required Procedures First, you need a passport and a visa to enter Japan. Then, in order to work in Japan, you need to obtain a residence card that proves your status of residence. We will explain the definitions of visa and residence status (= residence card). About Visa A visa proves validity of your passport that you present at the airport to prove that you can enter Japan. It must be issued by the Japanese embassy or consulate in your home country (or the country in which the applicant is staying). The issued visa will be affixed to the passport. In principle, the visa is valid for one entry only. It is valid for a period of three months from the date of issue. And the applicant must pass an immigration inspection in Japan within this period.Reference link: Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan – Variety of Visa Apply for a working visa In order to work as an IT engineer, you will need a “working visa” for the purpose of long-term stay and employment. In the case of IT engineers, the “Technical, Humanities, and International Services” category of working visa is applicable. Step 1: Apply for Authorization of Resident Eligibility In order to apply for a working visa, one of the required documents is an “Authorization of Resident Eligibility“. This is a document that proves that your activities in Japan are not false and that you meet the requirements for landing in Japan. It is necessary to apply for this certificate at the immigration office in Japan. Therefore, if you are outside of Japan and plan to work, you had better ask the staff of the company where you plan to work to apply for this certificate. Then, you need to have this certificate sent to you from Japan. Once you receive the certificate, take it to the Japanese embassy or consulate and apply for a visa. The documents required for application will vary depending on the type of company you are working for. For those who have graduated from a vocational school and have been granted the title of professional or advanced specialist, a certification is required. For more information, check the Immigration Services Agency of Japan website! Note It takes one to three months for the results of the review of an application for Authorization of Resident Eligibility to be issued. It is recommended to have plenty of time for application. This certificate is valid for three months after it is issued. It is possible to apply for Authorization of Resident Eligibility by the applicant himself/herself, but it will take a long time for the application to be reviewed, so it is better to have the company employee in Japan apply on behalf of the applicant. Step 2: Prepare the Required Documents The documents required to obtain a working visa are as follows. Please take these documents to the Japanese embassy or consulate to apply for a visa. 1. Passport2. 1 copy of visa application form (2 copies required for Russians, CIS countries, and Georgians)3. 1 photo (2 photos required for Russians, CIS countries, and Georgians)4. Authorization of Resident Eligibility (original and 1 copy) For Chinese nationals, these are required in addition to the above5. A copy of the family register6. Certificate of temporary residence or certificate of residence Since you have submitted Authorization of Resident Eligibility, it is easier for the Japanese embassy or consulate general to issue your visa within the standard processing time (five working days from the day after the application is received). Reference Link: Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan Based on the above, the process for obtaining working visa for IT engineers is as follows. What is status of residence (residence card)? Status of residence is a qualification that allows you to stay in Japan legally. A resident card is a “certificate” that proves that you are a legal resident with a resident status and period of stay. Unlike a visa, it can be issued in Japan. Your name, date of birth, gender, nationality/region, place of residence, status of residence, period of stay, whether you can work, etc. are written on the residence card. If there is any change in the information on the card, you are required to report the change. Reference Link: the Immigration Services Agency of Japan How to Receive Your Resident Card If you enter Japan at one of these 7 airports: Narita Airport, Haneda Airport, Chubu Airport, Kansai Airport, New Chitose Airport, Hiroshima Airport, or Fukuoka Airport, your passport will be stamped with a seal indicating landing permission, and you will receive a resident card. If you enter the country at any of the other airports or seaports, you will receive your resident card by mail after notifying the municipal office of your residence where you plan to work. If there is a change in the place of employment, or any other change IT engineers with “Technical/Humanistic/International Services” status of residence are required to notify the director of the Immigration Services Agency of Japan within 14 days of the following changes in the contracting organization. Change in the name of the contracting organizationChange of location of the contracting organizationExtinction of the contracting organizationTermination of contract with the contracting organizationConclusion of a contract with a new contracting organization If you want to know more about the residence card, check the Immigration Services Agency of Japan website! Based on the above, the process of obtaining the resident card for IT engineers and changing the description is as follows. You can obtain your residence card on the spot when you arrive at any of the 7 airports indicated above in Japan. If there are any changes to the items listed on your resident card, submit a change report to the immigration office. Summary In this article, we briefly explained about the visa and residence card required to work as an IT engineer in Japan. We hope this can be helpful to you when you are considering a career change. If you are a foreign IT engineer who wants to change jobs, you can register with GitTap, a job site for foreign IT professionals, and you may receive scouts from companies that can help you with the visa process. Start by signing up.The post Explaining the Visa and Status of Residence Required for IT Engineers Working in Japan for the First Time first appeared on GitTap BLOG.


Job seeker (IT engineer)

VR/AR business is booming! Explaining the reasons for the 1400 %increase in engineering jobs and the industry!

As IT advances, entertainment is becoming more diverse, and the VR and AR industry is gaining momentum. As you can see from the fact that Facebook and Apple have each assigned more than 1,000 employees to AR and VR initiatives, they become more important in the society. If you want to know the definition of VR/AR or the current status and future of the VR/AR industry, or if you are interested in becoming a VR/AR engineer, this article will do good for you.What you can learn from this article First, let’s look at the definition of what AR and VR are. Glossary One of the most popular AR games is Pokémon Go. Through the camera, you can experience the world as if Pokémon existed in the real world. AR has also been introduced into the filters of Instagram. The range of video shooting is becoming wider and wider. Increasing demand for VR/AR engineers The demand for VR/AR engineers is increasing every year. According to a report on software engineers by the recruiting site Hired, the number of jobs for AR/VR engineers grew 14 times from 2018 in the year 2019. As you can see from the graph, this is an overwhelmingly rapid growth rate. I believe there is no other IT occupation in recent years that has seen its demand growing up to 1400% in just one year. Diverse business domains of VR/AR The reason why there are so many job openings for engineers is because VR/AR is expanding its market not only in the entertainment industry but also in various business domains. Let’s take a look at the potential of VR/AR and its domains in business with reference to this page (https://bit.ly/3bawpAm). 1. Retail VR/AR has enabled simulations, virtual try-on and product customization before buying. By using VR goggles, you can enjoy shopping in a virtual space without visiting stores. IKEA, a company that sells furniture, has developed an app that allows users to place furniture in their own rooms by using a camera, or to walk through a kitchen in a virtual space. This kind of service can help promote sales by providing information for consideration before purchasing. 2. Military / Defense VR/AR is used to create a simulation environment and is used to optimize military training and actions. One application being considered by the U.S. National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency is to virtually share the situation and environment with personnel in remote locations in the event of a bombing or other crisis situation. It is said to be useful for planning personnel deployment and crisis management strategies. 3. Events and Conferences VR conferencing allows for facial expressions, eye contact, gestures, and a sense of presence that online conferencing could not compensate for. This creates a situation that replaces the face-to-face space by sharing the same created space. It also allows for remote participation, bringing a broader audience to the event. We may be entering a new phase of online communication. Reference: https://www.sumave.com/20200721_18761/ 4. Marketing and Advertising One familiar AR marketing is Instagram’s AR filter. Companies are creating game-like effects and ingenious filters that make people want to take pictures. While this provides fun for the user, it also creates a spreading effect when the photo is posted, and thus various companies are getting involved. 5. Law Enforcement and Police Like the military, the police train using simulation scenarios that use visual, auditory, and physical stimuli. Even within the virtual training environment, interactions between trainee and characters can be intensified or converged, which leads to the development of judgment and decision-making skills. VR/AR training can also help understand and manage the impact of police stress in actual situations. 6. Recruitment, Talent Management, Human Resources With the same applications as VR conferencing, VR-based recruiting has the potential to become popular in all industries. In fact, Lloyds Banking Group, one of the UK’s largest banks, used VR to evaluate candidates for its internship program. The widespread use of VR devices could allow remote and in-office workers to interact more effectively, thereby strengthening team relationships and reducing turnover. VR may become a more important factor in achieving culture fit. 7. Manufacturing and Logistics AR allows holographic images to be superimposed over an Individual’s real world view by means of goggles. With goggles, professional knowledge, such as how to operate large machines or special equipment, can be easily taught remotely. This could be useful for technicians in any industry. It is an innovative technology that can solve the labor shortage and provide professional training. 8. Healthcare and Medical Care The educational use of AR mentioned in section 7 is also growing in medical education, where AR is used for surgical simulation and telemedicine. A specialist in a remote location can share his or her view with a local surgeon and use AR to give instructions on the patient’s incision, etc. The local surgeon can then perform the surgery based on the instructions. Many companies are also attempting to provide apps that can customize the visualized patient’s health information. 9. Journalism and Media Publishing The media industry has also begun to adopt VR. The New York Times, an American daily newspaper with a circulation of over one million, offers a service called NYTVR, which allows users to experience news in real time through a VR application. The Android and iOS versions of the app are available for free and can also be viewed on the web browser. CNN also used virtual reality to broadcast the first Democratic presidential debate. With the appearance of various start-up companies, “immersive journalism” will be further promoted. 10. Agriculture VR and AR can help farmers visualize large amounts of crop data. By using drones that are equipped with inertial sensors, GPS, powerful processors, and image sensors, farmers can see the status of their fields. In addition, VR and crop data will enable them to apply more precise care to their crops, resulting in improving yields, fewer diseases, and improved costs. Infosys, an Indian IT company, has already introduced VR and AR into agriculture, developing sensors and camera systems to measure crop health. The farmer can check this information through goggles and adjust water, light, fertilizer, etc. 11. Education Through the Corona disaster, the learning methods of students have changed dramatically. Likewise, AR/VR technology will see changes through further popularization. Nearpod, an educational technology company, offers VR materials on the theme of interactive-learning. By providing reality-based learning, it leads to increased motivation to learn and early understanding. Summary In this article, we have selected a variety of areas to introduce. In addition to the entertainment industry, VR/AR is needed and the technology is being developed. As it is a developing field, the demand for VR/AR engineers is expected to increase. In an upcoming article, we will introduce the skills needed to become a VR/AR engineer. If you are a VR/AR engineer or a foreign IT engineer who would like to use related skills to change jobs, you can register on GitTap, a recruitment site for foreign IT professionals, and you may receive scouts from companies. Start by signing up. The post VR/AR business is booming! Explaining the reasons for the 1400 %increase in engineering jobs and the industry! first appeared on GitTap BLOG.


Job seeker (IT engineer)

Skills required for VR/AR engineers, and companies to watch

Engineers are an indispensable occupation as society becomes more and more IT-oriented. A report on software engineers produced by a recruitment website Hired found that the number of jobs for AR/VR engineers grew by 14 times in the year 2019. In this article, we will focus on VR/AR engineers, which have been in growing demand in recent years, and look at the details of the position and the skills required. What you can learn from this article What is VR/AR? We posted the definition in our last article, but we will briefly review it again.VR is a computer-generated virtual space. When you put on the goggles, you can create a sense of immersion as if you are in another world. AR is augmented reality, better known as Pokémon Go. The AR information is superimposed on the actual scenery seen through a camera or other device. While VR engineers create virtual worlds, AR blends the real world with virtual experiences, but the first step for both is the same. Let’s take a look at what skills are needed to become a VR/AR engineer by referring to this page ( https://hrd.cm/3n9PRPS ) Skills required for VR/AR engineers Skills required for beginners ・Basic knowledge of coding・Knowledge of C #, C ++, and Java languages・Experience of 3D software・Moderate proficiency in Unity or Unreal The figure below shows the popularity ranking of programming languages in Japan. The higher the number, the more people are using that language. Based on this ranking, those who have mastered the C++ language may be able to play an all-around role in the engineering industry. What is Unity? It is a popular game engine that allows you to develop games for many platforms, including PC, Mac, WebGL, Android, iOS, tvOS, XBox 360, XBox One, PS4, 3DS, Wii U, and Switch, using mainly C# and C ++ languages. Unreal is a game engine as well. Skills required for senior level ・At least 3 years of experience in software programming・At least 3 years of experience in languages such as C#, C++, Java, etc.・At least 2 years of experience with Unity or Unreal・Practical knowledge and experience in 3D programming・Know-how of VR devices provided by Oculus, HTC Vive, and Microsoft・Practical understanding of 3D mathematics・Basic computer science・Ability to think creatively and generate new concepts and ideas C++ is ranked as the most popular programming language, and it is also a necessary skill for VR/AR engineers. In other words, those who master C++ will be able to perform well in a variety of situations. Notable VR/AR related companies in Japan We introduce four companies that are developing services using VR and AR technologies. VR and AR are not only used in the entertainment industry, but are also expanding into a variety of other industries such as education, medicine, and retail. There is no doubt that they will become an essential part of society in the future. If you have IT knowledge ・ExaWizards A start-up company that is coping with social issues by providing AI-based solutions and in-house services. Using deep learning and VR technology, it has developed a “multimodal AI robot” that does not require programming. It contributes to solve the problem of declining working population. If you are fluent in Japanese ・UniFa A company that conducts research and development of childcare-related technologies using AI, IoT, and other technologies. Developing “Smart Hoikuen®”, a next-generation nursery school that ensures the safety of children and the confidence their parents and reduces the burden of childcare work. It contributes to solving the problems of families and childcare workers through the application of technology. ・S-ccubism A company specializing in the retail industry related to major distribution, providing solutions through IT technology and operational know-how. Among its many services, it offers a service called VR Commerce, which allows users to experience purchasing in a VR store. The company provides users with VR stores that allow them to freely create the interior of the store using full CG. ・amana inc.A company that produces visuals, mainly for advertising, plans and produces communication content, and sells creative materials. It creates video content and applications that make full use of VR to maximize the additional value of companies and brands. Chaos Map of the current VR industry Venture Reality Fund, a VA/AR investment fund, has released a VR industry chaos map for 2019. (See chart below) There are more than 550 companies listed in total, which is an increase of about 20% from when it was listed in 2017. As you can see from this figure, many of the leading companies in the modern world, Facebook, Google, Sony, and other major companies have entered the market. As a result, the VR market is expanding and many startups are entering and growing. Summary According to the skills required for VR/AR engineers and the ranking of popular programming languages in Japan, we found out that C ++ is a key language. With the expansion and advancement of the industry, the demand for VR/AR engineers is on the rise. I hope that the previous and current articles on VR/AR will further stimulate your interest in the VR/AR industry. If you are a VR/AR engineer or a foreign IT engineer who would like to change careers using related skills, you can register on GitTap, a recruitment site for foreign IT professionals, and you may receive scouts from companies. Start by signing up. The post Skills required for VR/AR engineers, and companies to watch first appeared on GitTap BLOG.


Job seeker (IT engineer)

Raising your profile with your Japanese language skills by the JLPT (Japanese Language Proficiency Test)!

In many countries, IT engineers are expected to have basic communication skills in English. However, in Japan today, Japanese language skills are required for many job applications. Many Japanese companies are worried about the shortage of IT engineers. In order to hire talented foreign students and IT engineers from overseas, they use the JLPT certification to check the Japanese language level of applicants. In this article, we will explain what the JLPT is, a Japanese Language Proficiency Test that is required for employment in Japan. Contents While Japanese companies want to hire foreign engineers, they have few English speakers In recent years, more Japanese companies have adopted English as their official internal language, but there are still very few English speakers in Japan, and foreign engineers are still expected to have Japanese language skills. According to a survey conducted in 2020 by EF Education First, a Swiss educational institution, Japanese people’s English proficiency ranked 55th out of 100 non-English speaking countries and regions, and for the fourth year in a row was identified as “low proficiency level,” the fourth out of five levels. However, due to the recent shortage of human resources caused by the declining birthrate and aging population, as well as the need to cope with globalization, both major corporations and small and medium-sized companies in Japan have recently become more proactive in hiring talented foreign engineers. Furthermore, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry (METI) estimates that there will be a shortage of about 410,000 (optimistic value) to 790,000 (pessimistic value) IT professionals in 2030. In other words, it is to a certain extent that the shortage of IT engineers is recognized as a social issue. There are some companies that do not require Japanese language skills, but in those cases, they are often international companies or companies that already have foreign engineers, and most of those jobs are highly competitive and require a high level of skill. Due to these factors, having Japanese language skills will broaden the range of companies you can apply to. Furthermore, having a certification that proves your Japanese language skill will definitely give you an advantage in your job search. What is the Japanese Language Proficiency Test (JLPT)? JLPT (Japanese Language Proficiency Test) is held twice a year (July and December). JLPT is divided into five levels, from N1 to N5 in order of difficulty. The second most difficult qualification, the Japanese Language Proficiency Test (JLPT) N2 or higher, is specified as a condition for applying for many jobs offered by Japanese companies to foreigners. The standard for N2 certification is that “in addition to understanding Japanese used in everyday situations, the applicant should be able to understand Japanese used in a wider range of situations to some extent.” It is said that the number of Kanji characters required to pass N2 is about 1,000 and the number of words is about 6,000. # There is a similar test called “Nihongo Kentei Shiken (Japanese certification test)”, but this is a different test for native speakers of Japanese. Use your Japanese language skills to succeed as an engineer In most cases, foreign engineers are required to have a level of Japanese that allows them to communicate smoothly with Japanese staff within the company. Of course, if you can speak Japanese fluently and work well with the staff within the company, you will be able to work more efficiently. Also, speaking your own language and English is a great advantage to be able to communicate with people outside of Japan, which Japanese staff could not be good at. As a PM or Bridge SE, you may be entrusted to communicate with foreign engineers inside and outside the company in the future. If you don’t have any qualifications, try to show your “speaking ability” in the interview! Even if you don’t have a certificate of JLPT N1 or N2, there are still people who can speak Japanese without any difficulty, because JLPT only evaluates reading and writing ability, not speaking ability. So, for example, even if you can speak Japanese well, reading and writing kanji can be difficult for people who come from countries where kanji is not used. Therefore, the JLPT certification becomes a higher hurdle. For those job seekers who have good oral communication skills, it is even more important to appeal to them in the hiring interview. Many Japanese companies use the JLPT to check Japanese language skills when screening documents, so obtaining the certification is also important. But anyway, if you can pass the document screening and proceed to the interview, and if you can appeal your oral communication skills on your own, you may be able to get hired. The contents of your resume and curriculum vitae are important in passing the document screening process, so you may consider having someone who is familiar with Japanese companies check them beforehand. If you are still not confident in your Japanese skill Ideally, you should have obtained N1 or N2 of JLPT, but if you are not yet confident in your Japanese, then aim to obtain N3. In addition, engineers with a strong background in emerging technologies such as AI and blockchain, for example, or those who have the high level of IT skills required by companies are highly valued, so be sure to include such information in your website profile, resume, and CV. There are many cases where your positive attitude toward learning Japanese and your high level of skills can lead to employment. Summary Currently, jobs that do not require Japanese language skills tend to require a high level of engineering skills, and conversely, if you have little experience as an IT engineer, Japanese language skills are required. To be active as an IT engineer in Japan, not only are development skills and rich experience as an engineer required, but also a high level of Japanese language proficiency. However, even if you don’t have both skills and language ability from the start, you can improve those abilities while working, which can lead to higher income and career growth in the future. This is because foreign engineers with high Japanese language skills are rare and attractive to Japanese companies. If you are a foreign IT engineer who wants to use your Japanese level and engineering skills to change jobs, register with GitTap, a job site for foreign IT professionals, and you may receive scouts from companies. Start by signing up.The post Raising your profile with your Japanese language skills by the JLPT (Japanese Language Proficiency Test)! first appeared on GitTap BLOG.


Job seeker (IT engineer)

【For foreigners】Let’s learn about taxes and hometown tax donation program to fully enjoy Japan!

The following is an explanation of the tax system for those who will be working in Japan in the future. The amount of tax you have to pay and the deductions you can take are different depending on your living situation. Therefore, it is important to know about Japan’s tax system, especially if you are planning to live in Japan for a long time. In addition, Japan has a tax system called “Furusato (hometown) Taxation” that can enrich your life. This article is designed to help you understand the tax system, types of taxes, and an overview of Furusato taxation. This is a brief explanation, omitting exceptions and minor details. What you can learn from this article Summary of Consumption TaxConsumption Tax Ranking in the WorldHow to calculate income taxHow to calculate residence taxAdvantages of Furusato (hometown) Taxation and how to start Consumption Tax Consumption tax is a tax imposed on transactions when goods or services are purchased. It is borne by the consumer and paid to the government by the business. Consumption tax is divided into national tax and local tax, and the tax collected in local areas is called local consumption tax. Currently, the consumption tax rate in Japan is 10%. (National tax rate: 7.8%, local consumption tax rate: 2.2%) This means that if you buy 10,000 yen worth of clothes, the final amount you will pay is 11,000 yen. Consumption Tax Ranking in the World According to the Ministry of Finance, the countries with the lowest consumption tax rates were Taiwan and Canada at 5%, and the highest was Hungary at 27% (out of 49 countries, mostly ASEAN, OECD, and EU members). Japan has the sixth lowest tax rate, tied with six other countries including such as Indonesia, South Korea, and Vietnam. It can be seen that Japan has a comparatively low consumption tax rate among the 49 countries. However, Japan’s consumption tax rate is not particularly low, as it is 10% or lower in other Asian countries that are members of ASEAN. Income Tax Income tax is a tax on personal income. The higher the income, the higher the tax rate (progressive tax rate), and depending on whether you are a resident or a non-resident, the different taxes and deductions you are entitled to. The definitions of resident and non-resident are as follows. How to calculate income tax Total income (the sum of all income earned) ↓Subtract 15 types of income deductions ↓Multiply taxable income (minus deductions) by the tax rate ↓Income tax The first item, total income, is different for residents and non-residents. In the case of residents, a foreign tax credit is applied to prevent double taxation of income earned abroad and income earned in Japan. This credit is available mainly in OECD countries.Reference link: Ministry of Finance website (*in Japanese) The taxable income tax that needs to be paid by foreign workers living in Japan depends on the following three categories. Income deduction for non-residents is different A deduction is a reduction in the amount of tax you pay. For residents, there are 15 different deductions. Here are three deductions as examples. Medical expenses deduction Subtract 100,000 yen from the amount you paid as medical expenses, and you will receive an income tax deduction for that amount. Casualty loss deduction In case of loss due to fire, theft, etc., a certain amount of income tax can be deducted. Spousal deduction If a taxpayer has a spouse who is eligible for exemption under the Income Tax Act, the taxpayer is entitled to a certain amount of income tax deduction. Residents are entitled to 15 different deductions, while non-residents are limited to three deductions. For non-residents, there are only three deductions: basic deduction, contribution deduction, and casualty loss deduction. Basic exemptions An income tax deduction that can be deducted based on the taxpayer’s total income. Contribution deduction An income tax deduction allowed when taxpayers make donations to the national government, local governments, specified public service promotion corporations, etc.Reference link: National Tax Office (*in Japanese) Income Tax Table (2021) This is a tax table for determining your income tax. Since Japan has a progressive taxation system, the higher the salary, the higher the tax rate. If your total taxable income is 8 million yen, the tax amount will be as follows.8,000,000 yen × 0.23 – 636,000 yen = 1,204,000 yen How to pay income tax If you work in a companyIncome tax will be subtracted from your salary beforehand, and the company will pay the tax to the tax office on your behalf. This is called tax withholding. If you do your own businessYou are required to calculate your income and tax amount for the year by yourself and report it to the tax office. This is called final tax return. Inhabitant Tax Regardless of your nationality, if you earn more than a certain amount of income, you are required to pay this tax to the prefecture or municipality where you live. If the inhabitant tax is not paid, your application for extension of stay may not be approved. As with income tax, there are two ways to pay the tax: special collection, in which the company deducts the amount of tax in advance and pays it, and ordinary collection, in which you pay the amount written on the payment slip at a financial institution. How to calculate inhabitant tax The inhabitant tax rate is 10% of taxable income in a single uniform manner. There are two types of inhabitant tax: municipal inhabitant tax and prefectural inhabitant tax. The municipal inhabitant tax is a uniform 6%, and the prefectural inhabitant tax (based on income) is a uniform 4%, for a total of 10%. In addition to this, the inhabitant tax is the sum of the per capita tax. The inhabitant tax on per capita basis is 3,500 yen for municipal tax and 1,500 yen for prefectural tax, for a total of 5,000 yen. About Furusato (hometown) Taxation Hometown taxation is one of the income tax deductions mentioned above, which allows you to donate to the local government you want to support. In return for your donation, you will receive local specialties. There are various types of gifts such as meat, rice, fruits, seafood, etc. Advantages of Furusato (Hometown) Taxation The biggest advantage is that when you make a donation, you can deduct 2,000 yen from the donation amount and have that amount deducted from your inhabitant tax for the following year. In other words, you can pay next year’s inhabitant tax in advance, and in addition, you can purchase special products from the municipality you donated to. For example, if you donate 50,000 yen, you are paying 2,000 yen out of your own pocket and paying 48,000 yen of inhabitant tax in advance. Note・Please note that the maximum amount of deduction will differ depending on your total income and family members. Run a simulation on a portal site or the like to know the amount within the range of tax deductions.・In order to receive a tax deduction, you need to file a tax return. Let’s start using the one-stop system If you are a salaried employee and donate to less than five municipalities, you do not need to file a tax return. First, choose the one-stop special system when you make your donation. Then, submit an application for the one-stop special system, and the local government will file your tax return on your behalf. When you submit the application form, you will need to submit identification documents such as a copy of your driver’s license. In other words, Furusato Taxation is a system that allows you to pay taxes in advance through donations, and in addition, receive gifts from local governments. It is a great way to learn about the charms of various regions in Japan through local specialties. Please find a region you would like to visit in the future, or a special product you are interested in, and try to use it.Reference link: About One-Stop Special System Summary In this article, I explained the basic types of taxes, how to determine the amount, and hometown taxes. If you forget to pay taxes, such as the inhabitant tax, it may affect your period of stay in Japan. If you work for a company, the tax is deducted from your salary, so you won’t have to pay it by yourself, but it is important to understand and be aware of it. In addition, there are mechanisms such as hometown taxation that allow you to learn about the charms of various regions while paying taxes, so please make use of them to enhance your life in Japan.The post 【For foreigners】Let’s learn about taxes and hometown tax donation program to fully enjoy Japan! first appeared on GitTap BLOG.