Thursday, October 7, 2010

Housing for Americans

by Pa Rock
Cultural Explorer

Many of the Americans residing on Okinawa are able to live on their respective military bases.  Young singles are housed in "dorms" and eat their meals in "chow halls."  Married individuals whose families have accompanied them to the island often have the opportunity to live in family quarters on base.  Everybody else has to head out into the local economy to secure housing.

Housing for Americans on Okinawa is a very big business.  There are numerous housing agencies owned and run by local nationals whose business it is to find suitable housing for their clients, handle complaints and repairs, and collect rent.  Rents are outrageous because the American government subsidizes what Americans can pay, and the local nationals know exactly how much they can get away with charging.  As an example, my rent, along with some utilities comes to over $3,200 per month.  My apartment is decent, but certainly would not be worth that kind of money in a fair economy.

The people at my agency, Dynasty Housing, are very personable and quick to address any problems that I experience -  but for that money they should be!  There are 16 units in the building in which I live, and they all seem to be rented by American$!

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