In Chinese culture, buying a house is not merely a financial transaction but is steeped in superstitions and beliefs. From choosing an auspicious day for the purchase to avoiding unlucky numbers, various factors are considered before making this big decision. In this context, this article will explore some of the common Chinese superstitions related to buying a house.
The Beliefs Behind Buying a House in Chinese Culture
In Chinese culture, buying a house is not just a financial investment, but also a significant life event that requires careful consideration of various superstitious beliefs. These beliefs vary from region to region and family to family, but some common ones include:
Chinese people believe that certain numbers are lucky and others are unlucky. For example, the number eight (八, bā) is considered lucky because it rhymes with “prosperity” (发, fā), while the number four (四, sì) is considered unlucky because it sounds like the word for “death” (死, sǐ). Therefore, when choosing a house number or floor, people often prefer numbers like 8, 9 (九, jiǔ), or 6 (六, liù), and avoid numbers like 4 or 7 (七, qī).
The Direction of the House
Another important factor to consider is the direction of the house. Chinese people believe that the orientation of the house can affect the energy flow and bring good or bad luck. For example, a house facing south (向南, xiàng nán) is considered auspicious because it receives more sunlight and warmth, while a house facing north (向北, xiàng běi) is considered less desirable because it is colder and darker. Additionally, some people prefer houses facing east (向东, xiàng dōng) because it represents the rising sun and new beginnings.
The Color of the House
Colors also play a significant role in Chinese superstitions. Red (红, hóng) is considered the luckiest color because it symbolizes happiness and prosperity, while black (黑, hēi) is considered unlucky because it represents death and mourning. Therefore, some people prefer houses with red doors or roofs, and avoid black decorations or paint.
The Age of the House
The age of the house is another factor to consider. Chinese people believe that older houses have more accumulated energy and history, which can bring good luck and fortune. However, some people also avoid very old houses because they can be associated with ghosts or bad spirits.
Superstitions and Their Impact on Real Estate
These superstitions can have a significant impact on the real estate market in China. For example, some buyers are willing to pay a premium for a house with an auspicious number or direction, while others may refuse to buy a house with an unlucky number or facing an unfavorable direction. Additionally, some developers may intentionally design buildings with lucky numbers or orientations to attract buyers.
However, these superstitions can also create challenges for sellers and real estate agents. They may need to be familiar with the local superstitions and adapt their marketing strategies accordingly. For example, they may highlight the auspicious features of a property in their advertisements or avoid using numbers or colors that are considered unlucky.
Feng shui (风水, fēng shuǐ) is another important consideration when buying a house. It is a traditional Chinese practice that aims to harmonize the energy flow in the environment and promote good fortune and health. Some common feng shui principles include:
- The main door should face a wide and open space, and not directly face another door or a wall.
- The living room should be bright and spacious, with ample airflow and natural light.
- The kitchen should be clean and well-organized, and not directly facing the bedroom or the bathroom.
- The bedroom should be quiet and peaceful, with a comfortable bed and no sharp corners or objects pointing at it.
Feng shui can be a complex and intricate practice, and some people may consult with a feng shui master to choose a house that aligns with their personal energy and destiny.
FAQs for Chinese Superstitions Buying a House
What are some common Chinese superstitions related to buying a house?
Chinese people are very superstitious when buying a house. Some of the most common superstitions include avoiding houses located near a cemetery or a hospital, as these are considered to be unlucky. Homebuyers also try to avoid homes with the number 4 in the address, as it sounds like the word for “death” in Chinese. The number 8, on the other hand, is considered lucky, so homes with a lot of 8s in the address are highly desirable.
Is it important to pick a specific day to move into your new home in Chinese tradition?
Yes, it is very important to pick a specific day to move into your new home in Chinese tradition. The day should be chosen based on feng shui principles and the buyer’s Chinese zodiac sign. For example, some zodiac signs are believed to be incompatible with certain directions, so it is best to avoid moving in a certain direction on that day. It is also deemed auspicious to move in when the sun is shining, as it is believed to bring positive energy into the house.
What are some lucky symbols that should be placed in the house to bring good fortune?
There are several symbols that Chinese people believe bring good fortune into the house. For example, a statue or picture of the Chinese God of Wealth, Caishen, is believed to bring in wealth and prosperity. A fish tank with eight or nine fish is also believed to bring good luck, as fish symbolize abundance and prosperity. Many people also hang a red tassel with coins tied to the end on the front door, as it is believed to bring in wealth and good luck.
Why is it important to avoid painting your house white or black in Chinese culture?
White and black are considered to be unlucky colors in Chinese culture because they are associated with death and mourning. Therefore, homes painted in white or black are considered to be unlucky and are avoided by buyers. Instead, it is best to choose bright colors, especially the ones associated with good fortune, such as red and gold.
Is it important to perform a housewarming ritual after moving into your new home?
Yes, performing a housewarming ritual is very important in Chinese culture, as it is believed to help rid the home of any negative energy that may have been present before. A popular ritual involves lighting incense and placing it in each room of the house, as the smoke is believed to purify the space. Another popular ritual is to boil oranges and other citrus fruits, as their scent is believed to bring good fortune and positive energy into the house.