Student Life and Expenses

Living Conditions and Accommodations

Tohoku University is located in Sendai, a city with a population of approximately one million. Sendai is the Tohoku region's central city. This city has long been called "The City of Trees," and it is an appropriate place for study and reflection. Given its distance from the metropolitan area of Tokyo, the cost of housing and other commodities is relatively low in Sendai. As shown on the graph of estimated living costs below, Sendai is a very livable city.

Housing costs per month

Housing costs per month

Academic Calendar

The academic year begins on April 1 and ends on March 31 of the following year. It is divided into two semesters:
First Semester : April 1 -September 30
Second Semester : October 1 - March 31
There are vacations in summer, winter and spring.


This university has a number of dormitories for international students, such as the Tohoku University International House and University House. However, as the housing provided by these dormitories is insufficient for the number of international students, some will have to rent private apartments. Tohoku University provides international students with various types of housing support to help them find suitable housing relatively easily.
Housing costs vary depending on location and other conditions, but rough estimates are shown below.

Residence Fee/Rent (monthly) Electricity Gas and Water Deposit Money/Key Money
Sanjo International House Ⅰ Single room 5,900
Married Couple room 9,500
Family room 9,500 / 11,900
paid by resident:varies by use
Sanjo International House Ⅱ Single Room 22,800
Married Couple room 27,400
Family room 50,000
paid by resident:varies by use
Higashi  Sendai International House Single room 19,000/22,000
Married Couple room 31,000
paid by resident:varies by use
University House Sanjo Single Room A type 9,700
Single Room B type 10,000
paid by resident:varies by use
Deposit 30,000
University House Katahira Single room 20,000 paid by resident:varies by use
Deposit 30,000
Private apartment Approx. 30,000-60,000 paid by resident:varies by use
Deposit required/
Key money

* Deposit (Shikikin): When renting a room or apartment, it is customary for the tenant to pay an amount equal to two to three months' rent in addition to the regular monthly rent. This is to guarantee on-time payment of rent and cover possible repair expenses when moving out. A portion of this guarantee may be refunded when moving out.

* Key money (Reikin) and Nyukan-hi (admission fee for First / Second Int'l Houses: When renting a room or apartment, the tenant may also be asked to pay Reikin or Nyukan-hi, a kind of premium customarily paid in appreciation for the use of the room or apartment. The usual amount is equal to
one or two months' rent. This is not refundable.

*Chukai-tesuryo (Commission): The amount of the one month's rent is to paid to the real estate agent, if the agent's help was sought in finding the room or apartment.

* Furnishings: In Japan, apartments and rooms are usually unfurnished. Furniture must be bought by the tenant.


International students who are unable to get into international student housing will have to stay in a hotel while they look for a private apartment. In this case, they will need an estimated 300,000 yen to cover the first month's rent, deposit, and key money.
In addition to tuition and entrance fees, students will need approximately 100,000 yen/month for living expenses, such as food, housing, textbooks etc.
Due to the scarcity of suitable jobs, and restrictions imposed by the Immigration Control and Refugee Recognition Act, it is not generally advisable to attempt to cover these expenses through part-time employment. Furthermore, as students must focus on their studies, they should not plan to support themselves through part-time employment.