Bike storage in an apartment

Oct 28, 2013
2
0
1
39
Kyiv, Ukraine
#1
Hi all,

Will be moving to Tokyo in the beginning of the year. Was there a few weeks ago doing my 'looksy' trip and spent some time looking at apartments. Was told that many apartments do not let you store your bike inside the apartment.

I was wondering:

1. How strictly is that enforced?
2. Is it possible to find apartments that let you bring your bike inside?
3. If not, where do you guys keep your bike?

Many thanks for the help...

--Brian
 

GrantT

Maximum Pace
Oct 2, 2012
1,620
1,199
143
Setagaya
#4
Do it and if someone kicks up a fuss act like keeping your bike inside is as Japanese as ramen. No need to appologise unless your bag of oily rags catches fire and burns down the apartment block.
 

kiwisimon

Maximum Pace
Dec 14, 2006
2,681
493
103
Japan
#5
Better to mention in the beginning while apt hunting or just do it and ask forgiveness later?
Don't mention it, if someone says something later just apologize. Don't tell the folks at your work about it either, just in case someone there is anal about such things.
 

rommelgc

Maximum Pace
Sep 3, 2009
362
101
73
Setagaya
#6
IMHO, I keep my bike in my room know. We've shared the room for 3 years now, had the room for 5 years now. I don't put my bike on the hallway, too narrow and it might be a safety hazard in an emergency. Not in the veranda either, too open to the elements. The commute bike is outside, locked but no roof on top of it. My landlord sees me all the time bring up my bike to my room (he even holds the door for me sometimes). He has no fuss over it (none that I could understand). As long as you pay the rent, hasn't burned the apartment down yet and mind the noise, everything should be OK. I do try to keep my wood tiled floor clean, and try to keep the noise down when I'm wrenching which means no wrenching in the middle of the night.

The only place where I find people very finicky about bikes are hotels and the like. Bag it and it should be ok.
 

joewein

Maximum Pace
Oct 25, 2011
2,440
901
133
Setagaya, Tokyo
joewein.net
#7
Asking for permission before is usually more risky here than having to ask for forgiveness after the fact. When you ask first, people will feel they share responsibility for possible outcomes and some people don't like that.

So keep the room clean, don't leave any grease stains on the floor or wall paper and don't cause any trouble with neighbours, but go ahead and keep the bike in the apartment without asking anyone. They may have a "no pet" rule, but there won't be an explicit "no bike" rule ;)
 
Likes: bird and TOM

bloaker

Maximum Pace
Nov 14, 2011
1,564
1,246
433
Miura, Japan
#8
My building encourages us to keep our bikes inside.
We have bicycle parking in our parking garage, but even then they have told me I can keep bikes in the recess across from my apartment.
Also, they allow my buddies to wheel their bikes right in when they visit.
 

TCC

Tokyo Cycling Club
Jun 30, 2013
2,362
1,291
133
#9
Was told that many apartments do not let you store your bike inside the apartment.
Most Japanese people consider a 'bicycle' to mean a cheap, heavy 'mamachari', which is exclusively kept outside, usually in designated parking spots which come with the apartment. The idea of wrestling one of these beasts into an apartment, chipping and scuffing the decor, and leaving oil stains everywhere, is what most likely led to this statement by the person/people you spoke to. The only time the Japanese see these monstrosities being worked on is by toothless old men, sat on stools outside local downmarket bicycle shops, with filthy windows, stinking of strong cigarettes, and they do not want any of this part of their world bringing into the sanctity of a decent apartment complex.

Your extremely expensive, perfectly clean and highly polished feather-weight work of velocity art which floats up the stairs with you into your apartment, and is kept in pride of place in the spare bedroom you have transformed into a dedicated cycle workshop with every tool known to man will not raise a single eyebrow, as it is not considered to be in any way the same thing as the 'mamachari' shopping bicycle.

The only possible thing that will happen is one of your neighbours will mention how much they like the look of your rig, vocalising what they think is an amusing over-estimation of the total cost, which in reality would only cover the price of the cranks, stem and bars. You will nod dismissively, and say 'yeah, about that much'. From that point on you will be known as 'that one with the 200,000yen bike', which they will all coo in awe as you walk past, completely oblivious to the dark truth of how much she is really worth...
 
Oct 13, 2013
47
10
28
South of Tokyo
#10
"Your extremely expensive, perfectly clean and highly polished feather-weight work of velocity art which floats up the stairs with you into your apartment, and is kept in pride of place in the spare bedroom you have transformed into a dedicated cycle workshop with every tool known to man will not raise a single eyebrow. . ."

Haha, love that. . . I too had the same worry about bringing my bike inside. But other than a few glances in the elevator, it has been fine.
 

TCC

Tokyo Cycling Club
Jun 30, 2013
2,362
1,291
133
#11
"Your extremely expensive, perfectly clean and highly polished feather-weight work of velocity art which floats up the stairs with you into your apartment, and is kept in pride of place in the spare bedroom you have transformed into a dedicated cycle workshop with every tool known to man will not raise a single eyebrow. . ."

Haha, love that. . . I too had the same worry about bringing my bike inside. But other than a few glances in the elevator, it has been fine.
Ideally the room used as a workshop will have a wooden floor, which will become increasingly polished by all the silicon polish over-spray from your daily rig-shining sessions. This will mean that by the time you move out, the floor will actually be cleaner than when you moved in, so storing your other-wordly insectoid street blade inside will have the knock on effect of reducing your daily housework time.
 

bawbag

Maximum Pace
Mar 20, 2013
430
244
63
Tokyo
#14
The first time my landlady saw my bike, I was meticulously cleaning it in the side road outside the flat. We chatted a bit, she said how shiny the parts were and I mentioned how the cranks cost more than my wife's entire mamachari. She then said I better keep it safe in the flat.

Agree with all the above posters who have warned against mentioning the bike. It's never going to be a contract-breaker after you've moved in, but can cause problems if you make it seem like an issue to the estate agent/property owner.

In fact, when I was sorting out the contract for renting my office in Bunkyo-ku I asked if there was any bicycle parking for the building. The people replied "nope" to which I said "That's no problem." On my first day at the office, the landlady looked aghast to see me carry my bike up the three flights of stairs to get to my office, but she never once has brought it up as an issue.
 

baribari

Maximum Pace
May 28, 2010
533
138
63
Fukushima
#15
It is always easier to ask for forgiveness than to seek permission, no matter what country you're in.

The perfect Japanese phrase for this issue is "mamachari to issho ni suru na!" - "My bike isn't a god damn mamachari!"

(don't actually use that phrase...it's very rude. "mamachari to issho ni sarete wa komaru," "you cannot compare it to a mamchari" is more appropriate if you have to make an argument. And bring up the fact that it "XX man-en mo shita no de, nusumareru wake ni wa ikanai" "since it cost XX0,000 yen, I can't afford to have it stolen.")

Mamachari is slang by the way, the official name is "city cycle," or "keikaisha" in older Japanese. But no one uses those terms.

But don't use the word "jitensha" if you don't have to, since "road bike" or "road racer" usually works. To Japanese "jitensha" = mamachari = disposable, cheap, scornworthy.

Ideally the room used as a workshop will have a wooden floor, which will become increasingly polished by all the silicon polish over-spray from your daily rig-shining sessions. This will mean that by the time you move out, the floor will actually be cleaner than when you moved in, so storing your other-wordly insectoid street blade inside will have the knock on effect of reducing your daily housework time.
And by "polished" I assume you mean "dangerously slippery." Hehehehe.
 

jdd

Maximum Pace
Hardest Crash
Jul 26, 2008
2,517
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133
Kanazawa
#16
If you're worried about droppings, simple throw rugs (or carpet squares) are universally available, and home centers also cut to fit.