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Thread: Japanese houses compared to European ones

  1. #51
    Twirling dragon Maciamo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by nurizeko
    I wouldnt mind a japanese house if i lived in the tropics or a part of the world thats always hot, since tis stylish and technically should help towards keeping the home cool?.
    Okinawa may be tropical, but most of Japan has cold winters with snow and frost. In Hokkaido it is as cold as the Scottish Highlands (i.e. -20 degree is not unusual).

    Secondly, your image of stylish Japanese houses is probably inherited from pictures you saw in travel magazines or guide books - basically temples or pavillions built several centuries ago and not inhabited by anyone nowadays. When talking about wooden Japanese houses, it is closer to that in average :



    Some have corrugated iron to hide the wood :



    No, these pictures were not taken in Bangkok but in central Tokyo near where I live. The newer houses (i.e. those that actually look like houses) are almost covered by concrete. They are either flat-roofed with "toilet tiles covering the outside walls, or built in Western style (similar to the US or Australia) with painted walls. Maybe you want to have a look at the Photo Gallery.

    Btw, wooden houses are not cool at all in summer. The one where I live is mostly wooden and it's extremely hot and humid during all summer without air conditioning (basically sweat drops immediately come running along my face as soon as I enter the house if there is no air-con). In winter it is so cold that I got frost bites at my feet at night, or during the day from staying in front of the PC (even with air conditioning !). The funny thing is that it doesn't really freeze in winter in Tokyo (around 0'C on a cold day).

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  2. #52
    Twirling dragon Maciamo's Avatar
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    One of the headlines on the TV news in Belgium today was that the central heating of a university campus was not working and that the poor students had to live in terrible conditions, only 15'C (while the ideal temperature should be betwen 20'C and 25'C). I wish them never to go to Japan. Even in subtropical Tokyo, the normal temperatures inside houses can drop close to 0'C in winter. It is as unthinkable for most Belgians as it was for me that a house could be cold enough to see your breath or have frost bites. This is one of the things that makes me feel that Japan is still a developing country.

  3. #53
    tsuyaku o tsukete kudasai nurizeko's Avatar
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    In my house I can waltz around in boxer shorts and a vest in the depths of snow drifting winter.

    In Japan I'm warmest in doors in full outdoor winter dress.

    So I agree for the most part Mac, though to be fair when I was there most houses looked fairly modern, if still looking flimsy. Infact most houses looked more flimsy then that corregated iron covered deal.

  4. #54
    Big Brother's Son Erekose's Avatar
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    Keep in mind that the wooden and corrugated steel houses you see are likely post-war dwellings. Laws have changed such that if the owner were to rebuild, they would have to sacrifice tremendous square footage; hence most never rebuild.
    Some houses even in the Tokyo area have central heating, though it is expensive. One of my wife's friends is an actress/model and her father is a very famous Japanese actor; their house of course has central heating.
    My wife's home in Kamakura, despite being completely custom designed and costing hideous amounts of money does not have central heating, but rather multiple gas heaters and this has proven sufficient.

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