Friday, June 03, 2005

Japan (2)

Following my previous post, here's another report from Japan that suggests the women are driving the renegotiation of the marriage contract...

Single women fuel craze for 'female-friendly' flats in Japan

Japan's single women were once best known for their love of shoes and handbags. Now the country's Bridget Jones generation is snapping up special female-friendly flats as well.

So popular are the apartments, which have been artfully tailored to meet the needs of young women, that builders often sell every unit in a block before it has been completed.

Some of the new flats have been over-subscribed by as many as 10 times, and the developers have been forced to allocate the apartments through a lottery.

It goes on:

Property prices used to be far beyond the reach of the average working Japanese woman and many banks would not grant a woman a mortgage. However, women have made huge strides towards equality at work and property prices have fallen dramatically during a decade of recession.

The result is that 60 per cent more single women own property than bachelors in modern Tokyo. More and more women never marry at all and single women seeking flats are one of the few bright spots in a depressed housing market.

I feel sorry for the young men.