Feng Shui is an abstract art which has its roots in architecture. It is an art which every architect knows a little bit about, whether they are aware of it or not.
Feng Shui is not mumbo-jumbo which requires odd placements of objects, it is an art of harmonising your home with nature. The more visible aspects of Feng Shui involves good air flow within the home, good ventilation, good natural lighting and well landscaped lands which everyone can appreciate.
However with the existence of conveniences such as air-conditioning, lightings and roof turbine vents to suck the hot air out of homes, many architects have neglected the incorporation of nature into their designs in lieu of more futuristic and unusual homes.
What is Feng Shui?
Translating literally to wind-water, Feng Shui is a Chinese philosophical system which the key to this art is in harmonising yourself with the surrounding environment and nature. It is the invisible force that binds every living being, be it a tree or human.
The reason for the practice in Feng Shui is due to the benefits that can be reaped by home and business owners. If properly designed and aligned, home owners can reap benefits in terms of a peaceful and prosperous family, while business owners will find their businesses flourishing.
Feng Shui is an art that is fine-tuned to the individuals of a house or property, as even the most well built home with the best Feng Shui can turn out to be bad for a person if it does not match them. Imagine Leonardo diCaprio wearing a beautiful ballgown to the Oscars. That is how a beautiful Feng Shui optimised home is to a person who does not fit it.
It is also possible for a home owner to completely ruin the Feng Shui of his home. The location could be awesome and the house perfect. But if unaware of Feng Shui principles, the owner could unwittingly renovate the house to make it his worse nightmare.
Basic Macro Feng Shui No-Nos
1. Avoid having your front gate and main door facing a T-junction
This is one of the most basic concepts in Feng Shui. From legend’s point of view, it is said that lost spirits always linger around T-junctions trying to decide which way to go or which path to take.
From a practical point of view, you want to avoid having car headlights shining straight into your house every night when a car comes through the junction as it can get really irritating and annoying.
Feng Shui is however flexible. If you really find a house that you love facing a T-junction, steps can be taken. For example, renovate the house to change the location of the main gate to the side, and exactly where the T-junction faces, put a solid wall there. The below picture is an excellent example of such a case.
2. Do not ever buy a house which its ground level is lower than the road level
This is another type of property avoided by those who are aware of basic Feng Shui principles. According to fairytales, it is bad to have a house which is lower than the road level as all the bad luck will easily flow right into your house.
But look at it from a practical point of view. If you get a house lower than the road level, the day your housing area ever floods is the day the floodwaters are going to flow right into your house.
3. Do not buy a house located in a valley
This is another similar concept to not buying a house lower than the road level. Stories have it that the peak of the mountain is where the rain, which is equivalent to wealth in Chinese beliefs, land and then flows down the rest of the mountain into the valleys. So everyone along the way would have collected the wealth, living only the dregs for those living in the valley.
But of course that is just a story. Looking at it from a practical point of view, the lowest part of the valley is also the most flood-prone area especially during torrential rains.
4. Do not buy a house if it is located right next to a river
Water generally represents wealth in the Chinese culture, which is why the placement of any water features both inside and outside a house is very important. If you love having a river around your house, you need to make sure it is not directly beside the house, and it would be even better if your house faces the river.
Basic Macro Feng Shui Guidelines
1. High ground behind home
The site of your home is very important. The best place to buy a home will be on high ground with a mountain or high ground backing the house.
Bear in mind that should there be a mountain nearby, the mountain should be behind the house instead of in front of the house. In fact, it is best if the front of your house is completely unobstructed with no obstacles.
2. Main door Feng Shui
The size of your main door is very important, and should be suitable to your house. Imagine for example living in a large double storey bungalow but your entrance door is a single narrow sized door. This is bad Feng Shui for a house.
There should also not be obstructions in front of the main door. If there is a lamp post for example in front of your home, the solution is moving the lamp post. If this is not possible, then the owner will need to move or tilt their front door instead.
Other examples of obstructions would be sharp points such as your opposite neighbour’s rooftop facing your home directly.
3. Placement of main door
Facing into the house, the main door of a house should always be clear of obstructions. There should not be a partition immediately after the door opens, nor should the door open directly into a set of staircase heading upwards or downwards. The main door can however face another door, but definitely not a toilet.
The correct direction that a door should face depends on the house’s occupants, which a Feng Shui master calculates based on the birth dates of the house’s tenants.
4. Kitchen setups are important
A kitchen should be placed behind the house within enclosed walls, and not outside of the house. The kitchen stove should always be on a slightly lower level than the sink in the kitchen, and they should not be placed on the same row or directly opposite each other. Even if they are located on the same row or directly opposite each other, there should be something solid in the way blocking them from each other.
The stove itself should also not be placed back-to-back with a toilet bowl on the other side of the wall, nor should be placed directly below a bed on the top floor. If this is the case, the bed on the top floor should be moved immediately. There should also be no toilets on top of the stove on the floor above, especially a toilet bowl or shower.
5. Bedroom arrangement
Bedrooms for the most important part were never meant to be placed in a basement, and the ‘master’ of the house, meaning the breadwinner, should always have the bedroom on the highest floor.
Toilet placements are yet again a major thing to look out for in bedrooms. The bed itself should not be placed back-to-back with a toilet bowl on the other side of the wall, and neither should the entrance to the toilet or bedroom be located just next to the head side of the bed. If this is the case, the bed must be moved immediately.
If moving the bed is not possible, then the owner of the house should place a partition between the bed and the door.
To ensure a good night’s rest, there should be no beams anywhere above the bed either. If sleeping in an attic, the bed should also not be located on the narrowest part of a sloping ceiling.
Any awkward walls within the bedroom should also be eliminated as it is not good to have odd walls and angles in a bedroom.
Another very important thing to note is that the bed itself must not immediately face the door.
The Art of Feng Shui
These are of course only some of the very basic principles involved in practicing Feng Shui, as there are many other elements to look into.
Of some of the developers that already hire Feng Shui masters to look into their developments to ensure the best for their tenants is the NCT Group and See Hoy Chan. Buyers of these developers’ projects will have minimal renovations to do within their homes as the developer would already have built the units in accordance to Feng Shui principles.
This is however not a common practice with developers due to the massive cost involved in hiring a Feng Shui Master, hence many home buyers who wish to optimise their homes based on Feng Shui will still need to do the renovations themselves.
A good Feng Shui master will not only tell you what needs to be changed, he can even tell you which is the best home for you, when is the best time to begin your renovations and give your house one last walk through once you move in to ensure that all your furniture is properly placed.
The Cost of Getting a Feng Shui Master
The price of getting a Feng Shui Master to look into your home or office is generally costly and the prices are usually never displayed online. Below is a basic guideline to how much a really good Feng Shui Master’s services costs.
Fee guideline case-by-case basis:
- Condominium unit below 800 sf: Min. RM1,888 *
- Terrace unit: Min. RM3,888 *
- For choosing the best of 3 condominium units 800 sf and below: RM2,888 *
- For choosing land, working closely with architect on design of house, choosing exact auspicious time for commencement of development, choosing auspicious time to move into the home and furniture placement (for individual homes only): Min. RM38,888 *
* Fees Inclusive of:
Feng Shui Master will obtain your birthdates prior to visit. He will then perform his initial visit for observation.
Upon completion of observations, he will draft his recommendations, discuss with you the feasibility of proposed renovations and then provide you with the final sketch of recommendations.
The Feng Shui Master will then discuss with your architect and interior designer offsite until all plans are finalised to ensure that they get all the Feng Shui elements.
A good date will then be selected for commencement of work, such as demolishment, breaking of walls and et cetera as necessary.
The Feng Shui Master will perform his second visit to the site while renovations are ongoing to ensure that his recommendations are being properly carried out.
Upon completion of the renovation, an auspicious date will be selected for moving into the new home. The final site visit from the Feng Shui Master will be performed one month after works are completed for a final walkthrough to ensure all furnitures are properly located.
While fees for the site visits are inclusive within the initial consultation fee, a small angpow must be given to the Feng Shui Master at the beginning of every site visit. The amount to put into the angpow is the giver’s prerogative.
This is an ancient practice that symbolises give and take. It was also typically believed in the olden China that the more you gave, the better your luck would be when you moved into your new home.
Angpow giving to your Feng Shui Master is a cultural aspect that is reputed to benefit both the Feng Shui Master and client.
This article is contributed by Master Yap of Yap Cheng Hai Academy, a Feng Shui Master of vast experience. For more information or for professional services you can reach out to Master Yap here:
Master Yap Boh Chu
Yap Cheng Hai Academy Sdn Bhd
Suite 11-01, 11th Floor, Wisma Hangsam, No. 1 Jalan Hang Lekir, 50000 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia
Tel: +603 20708009 | Fax: +603 20728009 | www.ychacademy.com