This Is What Makes an Apartment Different From a Mansion in Japan

Make sure to choose what suits your needs the best!

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Apartments are common in the Philippines, but in Japan, there are a lot of apartments and
mansions (condo). Both of these are a type of residence within a building. But what is the difference between the two? Similar to the apartments and condominiums in the Philippines, there are no clear definitions, therefore it can be difficult to point out exactly what makes one an apartment, and the other a mansion. 

In Japan, an apartment and mansion are distinguished as follows:



Building Structure

Wooden or light steel

Concrete or reinforced concrete (RC)

Number of Stories

Maximum of two floors

More than two floors

Facilities Available

Simple stairs, sometimes an elevator

Most have elevators, a main entrance with auto-lock



More expensive

Building Structure

Mansions are considered to be more modern compared to apartments. These modern structures are constructed with concrete or reinforced concrete (RC). Apartments, on the other hand, are made with wood or light steel. There are advantages and disadvantages to both.

Concrete or reinforced concrete provides warmer rooms. It prevents cold drafts from getting in during the winter and provides better soundproofing. Wooden structures make it possible to
breathe better, which prevents the feeling of stuffiness most mansions have.

Number of Stories

Since mansions are made with sturdier structure and foundation, it is suitable to house more floors or stories. Apartments have two floors at most to keep up with earthquake regulations. However, there are some apartments with more than two stories.

Different Facilities

Mansions mostly have elevators to reach higher floors as well as a main entrance with an auto-lock security system built-in. Although some apartments have elevators, those that have two floors often have stairs instead. Most mansions also provide a common area for garbage segregation within the building premises.


While the most popular impression of many is that mansions are more expensive than apartments, the truth is: there are cheap mansions, and there are expensive apartments. Buildings made from concrete or reinforced concrete will most definitely be more expensive than wooden ones. Other than that, there are many factors to consider. For example, a small mansion in an area located in the middle of the city is more expensive than a bigger apartment in the suburbs. Or, a same-sized mansion and apartment could have different prices based on where they were built. There are many factors that affect the price range of the rent, so make sure to choose what suits your needs the best!

 (17 June 2019)

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