How To Register Your Address In Japan

How To Register Your Address In Japan    

Moving to Japan brings its own set of unique challenges, one of which is the essential task of address registration. Ready to settle in Japan? Don’t worry! We’ve got your back!

Whether you’re a student, a working professional, or just settling in, registering your address is a key step in establishing your life in Japan. This article provides a detailed walkthrough of the address registration process, offering valuable insights to ensure you navigate this requirement with ease and accuracy.

Let’s dive in!

Why Is Registering Your Address Important?

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This process is essential if you plan to live in Japan for an extended period. 

Registering your address in Japan has several advantages:

✅Legal Requirement: 

In Japan, it’s a legal requirement for residents to complete their residential registration within 14 days of moving to a new address. Failing to do so could result in penalties.

✅Access To Services: 

Registering your address allows you to access essential services, such as healthcare, education, and social welfare programs. 

You’ll need a registered address to enroll in national health insurance, local schools, and other government programs.

✅Residency Status: 

Having legal residency is essential for employment and education in Japan as well as for attaining a work or study visa.

✅Voting Rights: 

Registered residents have the right to vote in local elections.

✅Utilities And Services: 

Utility and service providers, like Internet, phone, and banking, often require proof of residency.


You may need it for various administrative procedures, including opening bank accounts and signing contracts.

✅Social Services: 

If you have a registered address, you may be eligible for social services or support in emergencies or natural disasters. The government can provide assistance more efficiently when your address is on record.


Your registered address may also impact your tax obligations, as different municipalities have varying tax rates and regulations.

✅Legal Protection: 

In legal matters or disputes, having a registered address can help establish your legal domicile and jurisdiction.

It’s essential to keep your residential registration up to date if you move to Japan, as the address on your registration must reflect your current residence.

Along with the advantages of registering your address in Japan, you must keep in mind that there are also responsibilities that come with it.

How To Register Your Address In Japan?

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Firstly, you should reach city hall. It is important to note that the general staff needs to be fluent in English.

Move-In Notification

To register a new address, fill in the “notification of moving-in”. You may go to the ticket machine and pick up a number first. You will be provided with sample documents with English explanations on how to fill them out.

Room Number

You should know your address in detail, postal code, room number, etc. City Hall has registers where they can look up every address and the name of the building, but they need the room or apartment number to register someone.

Phone Number

You will be asked to provide a phone number. If you don’t have one, you may give the phone number of someone at your company. If you don’t have any number, you can put a foreign number or leave it blank.

Certificate Of Residence

The certificate of residence costs 200 Yen per copy. They are not needed often, but starting a new job is one of the cases when one does.

Submit Your Documents

Make sure you have these things with you when you go to city hall:

  • Residence Card 
  • Passport 
  • New Address 
  • Phone Number

Once everything is completed, ensure you have your ticket and wait for your number to be called.

After your details are affirmed, you will get another number and be asked to wait for one hour for them to process the registration (typically, the wait is only for 30 minutes). 

Receiving Your Documents

When the registration is complete, you will receive a document with your resident ID.

If you are in possession of a working visa, then this is the end of your visit to city hall.

Your company is taking care of setting up all your other insurance. For students and others, the registration for National Health Insurance, etc, is proceeded with.  

Can I Register My Address As An Airbnb In Japan?

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In Japan, it’s generally not possible to register an Airbnb property or other short-term rental property as your residential address. 

Residential registration is for people living in a property as their primary residence, and it involves registering with the local government and proving that you are a resident of a specific location. 

Airbnb and other short-term rental properties are considered commercial or transient accommodations, and they are subject to different regulations.

Suppose you’re interested in operating a property as an Airbnb or short-term rental in Japan. In that case, it’s essential to research and comply with all the relevant local laws, regulations, and tax requirements. 

Additionally, it’s advisable to consult with legal and tax professionals to ensure that you are in full compliance with Japanese laws and regulations.

What Happens When You Register Your Address Late In Japan?

The Immigration Authority will send a Residence Card to your reported place of residence within two to three weeks

Please submit this registration within 14 days of establishing your fixed residential address in Japan to avoid a fine of up to 200,000 yen.

These penalties can vary depending on the specific municipality and the severity of the non-compliance.

In legal matters or disputes, having an unregistered or outdated address can complicate the establishment of your legal domicile and jurisdiction. This could impact your rights in legal proceedings.

The Procedure For Changing Your Address

If your address changes, you must change your registered address within 14 days of moving. 

There are different situations in this regard:

Moving Out Of Your Municipality

If you’re leaving your municipality, you must submit a Change of Address Form. In this case, it’s also called a Moving Out Form

You must submit this whether you’re leaving Japan permanently or moving to a new area within Japan.

Here’s a general guideline of what to bring:

  • Proof of Identification of the person applying (Residence Card, Driver’s License, etc.)
  • Health Insurance Cards, Pension Booklets, and other public service documents from your local municipality (for all family members who have them).

Visit your local municipal office and the Residents and Family Registration Division, ask for a Change of Address Form, and then submit the form and your documents. 

They’ll process the documents and call you back. 

You’ll get a certificate showing that you are leaving the municipality.

Moving Within Your Municipality

Moving within your municipality also requires registering your new address with a Change of Address Form. This type is also called a Moving Within Form. 

Here’s a general guideline of what to bring:

  • Proof of Identification of the person applying (Residence Card, Driver’s License, etc.)
  • Residence Card or equivalent for every family member moving with you (If you add family members, you will need additional documents to prove your relationship.)
  • Health Insurance Cards and My Number Cards for everyone who has one.

The process is the same as for the moving out form. You’ll get your Residence Card back with the new address updated on it, and you’ll be able to get Certificates of Residence with the new address printed on it.

Moving Into A New Municipality

If you’re moving from one municipality to another, you must submit a Change of Address form, otherwise known as a Moving In Form.

The document requirement and process are the same as moving within the form. Remember that you will need to bring a “Certificate of Moving Out”  from your previous municipality.


Successfully registering your address in Japan marks an important milestone in your journey of settling into this culturally rich and dynamic country.

With the steps and tips outlined in this guide, you’re now prepared to complete this process smoothly and efficiently. Remember, this is more than a bureaucratic necessity; it’s the first step in making Japan your home.

Japan Welcomes!

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