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naginataonthebrain
May 18th, 2015, 01:42
Hey y'all. So I just found out from two other ALTs in Nichinan-shi, Miyazaki-ken that my position is a new JET position. To be precise, I'm taking over a temp. Interac employee and therefore, I do not have a predecessor. My future coworker said that my apartment will therefore be completely empty. Can you guys give me an estimate on how much I should bring in terms of start up money? Also, what are good places to shop for home goods? Here is some key info:

Apparently, city hall will subsidize half of my apartment so the rent will be around 24000 yen/month.

I will be driving to several of my schools. Cars will be provided by city hall but I'm sure I'll have to pay for gas and stuff (unless that gets subsidized too?)

Both ALTs say I should buy my own car to make traveling around the area easier (especially since the train to and from the prefectural capital is slow, infrequent and expensive).

naginataonthebrain
May 18th, 2015, 02:12
Also, just realized I should have probably put this in the living in Japan-related forum. Mods, feel free to move this.

TwilightsCall
May 18th, 2015, 08:54
Last year I moved in with no Predecessor to an empty apartment. I brought 300,000 yen with me and spent all of it within about the first month, but that was with no backing from my CO whatsoever and no car. Also of course my pay came through halfway into the month, so I was never really tight for money.

Most of that money went to start-up costs for the apartment, so if your CO is helping with the deposit and everything you can probably expect to pay a lot less.

Not sure how applicable my situation is to yours, but I figured I'd at least give you something to compare with. For the record I'm in the outskirts of Tokyo with a rent just under 50,000 per month.

webstaa
May 18th, 2015, 09:53
Cars can be very wide ranging in price depending on what you want. A 10 year old yellow plate might only run you a couple man if you find the right deal. White plate cars are more expensive - although there are a couple used dealers near me (opposite end of Japan) that are 20-40 man with 1.5-2 years of shaken left. Fees and insurance can be a bit expensive too. It'll probably come down to your impression when you arrive - if you're in a public transport black hole, you'll probably want a car right away. Otherwise you might be better off waiting a month or two. At least the exchange rate is on your side!

I've never done any major furniture shopping, but you could look at things like Ikea to get an idea of prices of furniture. There are stores like Homec or Cainz nationwide in Japan that sell basic home furnishings/DIY stuff too. Larger department stores like Aeon are kinda like the Walmart of Japan too - they'll have a limited selection of pretty much everything.

Gizmotech
May 18th, 2015, 11:23
Microwave 150$
Fridge 300$
futon set 100$ online, 150$ in a store
basic dishes/utensils 40$ at the dollar store
pan/pot 50$
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Apartment rent x3 700-1500$ (depending on apartment and conditions)

Car 1500-2500$ (Totally random chance on this one)

Basic consumable expenses until pay day, likely about 600-1000$ depending on parties, going out, travelling, etc...

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As for car subsidization, it totally depends. If they're providing the car there's a good chance you're not getting the gas/transit money back. Otherwise people tend to get a small amount of money from their employer for transit expenses. (I get about 70% of my train fare back every month for my visit school).

Serbia
May 18th, 2015, 14:10
If you are using one of the cars from the vehicle pool that you sign out and sign back in like everyone else at town hall you wont have to pay for gas. If the BOE has just bought/acquired an old beat up car for the ALT to use then they may expect you to fuel it up out your own pocket.

naginataonthebrain
May 19th, 2015, 00:01
Thanks guys, this definitely helps. I have another question. Does Costco offer delivery in Japan like they do in the states? I tried looking on their website but I couldn't find anything. The closest Costco is like 5-6 hours north in Kitakyushu. And I know with IKEA, you can have stuff delivered but you have to build it yourself. Do other places offer to deliver and set it up for you? I mean, if I have to set it up myself, I will but I just want to explore my options.

Shincantsen
May 19th, 2015, 00:24
If you're already part of the prefecture's Facebook/whatever group, it would be a great idea to ask about anything anyone would be willing to give you. My friends (married couple) moved to Japan with the same situation, and got all the dishes and kitchen stuff they needed, somebody's extra futon, and other stuff for the apartment for free. It depends on if you'd want used stuff or not, but it's a great option for free or cheap ways to fill some of the gaps.

BifCarbet
May 19th, 2015, 01:08
theflyingpig.com delivers for Costco

Ace
May 19th, 2015, 05:55
Why not try to find the Interac predecessor? Can't you contact the BOE and find this person's email? If this person is leaving the position to go home or something, surely they must have stuff they want to get rid of. If they're staying in the area, they can at least give you good advice on what you need for the job.

naginataonthebrain
May 19th, 2015, 06:17
Why not try to find the Interac predecessor? Can't you contact the BOE and find this person's email? If this person is leaving the position to go home or something, surely they must have stuff they want to get rid of. If they're staying in the area, they can at least give you good advice on what you need for the job.

I've tried to find the interac pred on the Miyazaki AJET and friends fb group to no avail. Also, my future co-workers haven't mentioned my pred's name and whenever I had any questions they couldn't answer, they would point me to another JET ALT in Nichinan. I'm also sure it's too early to contact the BOE just yet....I just got lucky that my future coworkers found me on FB and gave me the inside scoop of what's up.

ChasingTheSun
May 19th, 2015, 06:53
Be sure to watch the MAJET group for people selling their things. You can often buy things for a lot cheaper through other people.

Also, there are times when the Interac person has to sell all of their things and sometimes they are not allowed to leave anything for the next person. There was an interac in Sadowara (about two hours north of Nichinan) who had to sell all of his things when he left and I ended up getting a microwave with oven function for only about $20.

weepinbell
May 19th, 2015, 08:23
Anyone ever been in a situation where the entire city is new to JET?

webstaa
May 19th, 2015, 08:26
Anyone ever been in a situation where the entire city is new to JET?

Anybody not on an island in Tokyo. Although there aren't that many around ITIL.

TwilightsCall
May 19th, 2015, 12:54
Anybody not on an island in Tokyo. Although there aren't that many around ITIL.

*raises hand*

Though they've had private hire ALTs for years so I don't know if that's quite the situation you are looking for

weepinbell
May 19th, 2015, 13:03
*raises hand*

Though they've had private hire ALTs for years so I don't know if that's quite the situation you are looking for

All I know is I'm in a supposedly new Osaka placement with around 10 others. So it's not like the 100s Tokyo gets or anything. Are you prefectural or municipal? Everything here is municipal I guess, so *generally* does that effect if you get help at all from your CO? Just curious, I'm prepared if they don't. I guess if they're a new city though, things could be very different. No clue if they've done ALTs through another company before, though.

Serbia
May 19th, 2015, 13:16
Places switch from JET to dispatch companies and back to JET all the time. Its highly unlikely that a place large enough to require 10 placements have never had ALTs in the past.

TwilightsCall
May 19th, 2015, 15:43
I'm prefectural, so my experience up there may not be as applicable, but I'm not really aware of there being a difference between how much Municipal and Prefectural COs differ in the amount of support they give. I guess it sounds logical that a Municipal CO would be more likely to offer help, since they would theoretically be smaller scale and have less employees to cover? I don't know, that's wild speculation on my part.

Also just as an aside, we get no help paying for housing, but we do have 100% of our commuting expenses paid for us, both for normal days and business trips. And we are not allowed to drive to work.

nibbletbunny
May 20th, 2015, 10:33
I have been a prefectural JET twice and I noticed a clear difference between the support given to Municipal vs. Prefectural ALTs. In my experience, municipal ALTs are assigned to a supervisor who works at the local BOE. This person is assigned to help the ALTs who are employed by the municipality. Based on proximity alone, I believe that increases ALTs' accessibility to their supervisor.

Often, with prefectural ALTs, our BOE supervisor may be located in another city, somewhere across the prefecture. Therefore, we are assigned to supervisors at our school who are teachers in addition to being our supervisors. In my experience, depending on who your supervisor is, you can have a very different level of support given for your daily needs. Having more than one stint with JET, I've got to experience both very hands-on and dedicated level of support as well as the opposite end of the spectrum. Though, that is mainly in regards to general support, not the financial aspect of things.

Gizmotech
May 20th, 2015, 12:04
I have been a prefectural JET twice and I noticed a clear difference between the support given to Municipal vs. Prefectural ALTs. In my experience, municipal ALTs are assigned to a supervisor who works at the local BOE. This person is assigned to help the ALTs who are employed by the municipality. Based on proximity alone, I believe that increases ALTs' accessibility to their supervisor.

Often, with prefectural ALTs, our BOE supervisor may be located in another city, somewhere across the prefecture. Therefore, we are assigned to supervisors at our school who are teachers in addition to being our supervisors. In my experience, depending on who your supervisor is, you can have a very different level of support given for your daily needs. Having more than one stint with JET, I've got to experience both very hands-on and dedicated level of support as well as the opposite end of the spectrum. Though, that is mainly in regards to general support, not the financial aspect of things.

Totally fair point to make actually. Prefecture support can be all over the place depending on who is in charge and working at the BoE at the time. My first three years were this hag of an old woman who was just doing the position to get further up in the BoE, cared nothing about teaching/alts/english, and was pretty much useless. The woman this year is her exact opposite except in uselessness, but atleast it's because she's just a scatter brain. This means that when she's on task and focused awesome things can and do happen, then there are other days where she's just sorta not there.

Wasabi
May 20th, 2015, 12:35
If you spend over a certain amount (I want to say maybe 15,000 yen or so) at Nitori, they should deliver and set up your furniture for free. I went to the Nitori store an hour south and picked out a bed and frame and we arranged a delivery day. It went well, with the exception of the crew arriving about an hour earlier than their projected start time. I second asking people in your area if they have anything they could give you or sell you cheaply. You'd be surprised what people have. My pred left me with no silverware or pots/pans, but an abundance of mugs, cups, and plates that I passed on to others.

ChasingTheSun
May 21st, 2015, 12:24
A note on Nitori: depending on when you arrive, it might be right around Obon (a holiday that lasts a few days). I ordered a bed the first day I got to my placement, but because of the holiday and a lot of other deliveries they had to make, I couldn't actually get the bed for two weeks. Also, I'm not sure if this has been mentioned, but make sure to make point cards any chance you get. The amount I spent at Nitori let me accumulate and use a decent amount in points.