Skip to main content
Member Introduction: Anton Wörmann ~ A two-way entrepreneur “re-modeling” the way we see Japan
NEWS | Features

Member Introduction: Anton Wörmann ~ A two-way entrepreneur “re-modeling” the way we see Japan

05 February 2024 | Written by administrator



“Beauty is in the eye of the beholder” the saying goes. What may appear shabby, shredded, and squalid to someone may exhibit a spiritual, sublime, or superb quality to another. Our preconceptions, our state of mind, and our foresight can profoundly change the way we perceive what stands before us. Anton Wörmann—a Swedish content creator and problem solver—is someone who not only sees aesthetic beauty but an investment opportunity in Japan’s long dismissed sprawling supply of akiyas (abandoned houses). SCCJ interviewed this talented millennial to ask about his business, his creed, and his vision for the future.


Anton was born in Stockholm in 1992 and grew up in a one-hundred-year-old house with his parents and two sisters. After graduating from high school in 2011 he began working as a full-time model, collaborating with prestigious brands such as Calvin Klein, Cartier, and Gucci. For the first few years of his career he worked tirelessly around the world—moving between cities like London, Milan, New York, and Paris—but in 2018 he decided to make Tokyo his adopted home and registered for residency within that year.


“The first time I came to Japan was in 2015 for a two-month modelling contract. I very quickly fell in love with the country and returned every year for two months over the next couple of years. My modelling manager was very happy when I told him I wanted to move here to live. Initially I only worked as a model; it wasn’t until 2020 that I purchased my first akiya and started creating content on YouTube,” explained Anton.


Since then, Anton has purchased one more akiya. The asset—aptly named Sangenjaya House—is an 86-year-old two story wooden property located in Sangenjaya, Setagaya-ku, Tokyo. Although largely re-modeled into a Japandi (Japanese Scandinavian) style house, Anton retained some of its traditional Japanese accents such as tatami, fusuma, and tokonoma. This one-of-a-kind property was purchased in January 2022 and is available for booking through Airbnb.


“I did a lot of the hands-on work for both akiyas by myself. Renovating Sangejaya House took about one year to finish. I’m really into DIY, thinking outside the box, and being creative with my solutions. The more run down the property, the more challenging it’s going to be and that to me means more fun!” said Anton.


Anton’s hard work, forward thinking, and unique investment strategy are all documented in his book FREE HOUSES IN JAPAN: The True Story of How I make Money DIY Renovating Abandoned Homes published in November 2023.


“It’s the first ever book about Akiya written in English. I’m essentially answering the thousands of questions people have posted on my YouTube channel. The biggest challenge when renovating a house in Japan is trash disposal. You might need to allocate 10~20% of your budget toward this; whereas if it’s overseas, the number is probably between 1~2%. To save money, I ended up renting a truck and did most of the work on my own,” said Anton.


With more than 585,000 subscribers and a Silver Play Button Shield under his belt, Anton’s English language YouTube channel—ANTON IN JAPAN—launched in March 2023, has quickly become a valuable resource for those who want to learn about akiya investment and a Swede’s take on life in Japan. When asked about what the key to becoming a successful YouTuber is, Anton provided the following response:


“Know your viewers. You need to make content that your viewers want to see. It’s important to be consistent with your content creation, too. That’s why if you’re not making stuff you enjoy, it’s not going to fly. I think I’ve achieved what I have because I like doing what I do. I’m also positive minded and am genuinely curious about the possibilities that lie ahead.”


Anton plans to double down on his two-way journey as a content creator and problem solver for at least the foreseeable future:


“My next step is creating more exciting educational content focused on akiya investment. I don’t think the Japanese way of looking at properties is sustainable. The average age of a demolished house in Japan is around 35; that would never happen in Sweden. I want more people to know that you can still get a super cool house by renovating an old one. […] I’m going to renovate more akiyas with my own hands, too. The next akiya I’m currently interested in is in Shinjuku-ku. I also plan to branch outside of Tokyo if I see a property I like.”


As the number of akiyas nationwide is already above 8.5 million and is expected to increase even further, there will no doubt be ample re-modeling opportunities for Anton going forward.


We extend a warm welcome to Anton Wörmann as a new member of SCCJ. You can find out more about him at:

「美は見る者の目に宿る」ということわざがある。誰かにとってはみすぼらしく、ズタズタで、汚らしく見えるものでも、別の誰かにとってはスピリチュアルで、崇高で、素晴らしい品質に見えるかもしれない。私たちの先入観、心の状態、先見の明は、目の前にあるものの捉え方を大きく左右する。スウェーデン人コンテンツクリエイターで問題解決の達人であるAnton Wörmann氏は、美しさだけでなく、長い間放置されてきた日本の空き家に投資機会を見出した人物だ。SCCJはこの才能溢れるミレニアル世代にインタビューを行い、彼のビジネス、信条、そして将来のビジョンについて聞いた。


Anton氏は1992年にストックホルムで生まれ、両親と2人の姉妹とともに築100年の家で育った。2011年に高校を卒業後、フルタイムのモデルとして活動を開始し、Calvin Klein、Cartier、Gucciなどの一流ブランドとコラボレーションした。キャリアの最初の数年間は、ロンドン、ミラノ、ニューヨーク、パリなどの都市を行き来しながら、世界中で精力的に活動していたが、2018年に東京を自分のベースにすることを決意し、その年の内に居住届を提出した。








彼のハードワーク、前向きな考え方、ユニークな投資戦略はすべて、2023年11月に出版された彼の著書『FREE HOUSES IN JAPAN: The True Story of How I make Money DIY Renovating Abandoned Homes』に記されている。




2023年3月に開設された彼の英語版YouTubeチャンネル「ANTON IN JAPAN」は、チャンネル登録者数585,000人を超え、シルバー クリエイター アワードを獲得した。YouTuberとして成功するための秘訣は何かという質問に、Anton氏は次のように答えた:










Anton Wörmann氏のSCCJ加盟を心より歓迎いたします。彼の活動について詳しくはこちらからご覧いただけます。