By Kathryn Weber
One of the most common questions in feng shui is how to understand the way the directions relate to your house. This article will explain how to diagram your home’s floor plan, determine the directions, and assign the corners. Of course, not every house is oriented the way I’ve shown in this article, but the majority of homes are arranged with the front door facing the street.
If your door faces a different direction than the front of your house and facing the street, you will most likely have a large picture window that faces the street. If you do, then take your measurements from this window. If you have an apartment or condo, please see this article for more information about how to diagram your home.
Create your floor plan
The first step is to have a floor plan of your home. Newer homes often have a floor plan or you can find them in your closing papers. If you live in a condo or apartment, many apartment or condo associations will have the floor plans to your home.
If you don’t have a floor plan, you should draw one yourself. It’s not that hard, but it is so important. I have found many times that what you thought was in the north corner was really the northwest or northeast, for example.
How to Diagram Your House
Using graph paper, measure and mark off the outline, or “footprint,” of your house. Use 1 square for each 2 feet of space. Measure the inside or exterior walls for your drawing. The better the drawing is, the more accurate your feng shui will be.
Once you have a drawing be sure to indicate on your diagram the locations of:
- Front door
- Large picture windows
- Kitchen (stove, sink, refrigerator)
- Beds and their position in each room
- Vacant spaces, garages and storerooms
- Dining areas
- Work/study areas or home offices
- Entrance walkways and driveways
- Large trees or trees close to the house or in line with the front door
- Direction that water flows when looking out of the house to the street
How to Take Compass Readings
It’s not necessary to use an expensive compass. In fact, an inexpensive camping compass is all you need and is the best. Avoid using your smartphone’s compass because these can be up to 15 degrees off from a magnetic reading.
Also note that wearing metal jewelry, belts, or metal buttons on your pants or clothes, or wearing metal jewelry while making the reading will affect the reading of the compass. It’s best not to have metal on your person while taking the reading. It’s important to get exact readings. Don’t trust the direction of the sun.
To determine the direction of your space:
Stand in the front door and face out as though you were opening the door for a guest. Stand with your feet at the threshold with the door open and holding the compass level (see diagram below). Write down the degree reading. It’s important to note that we aren’t trying to locate north when taking measurements. Instead, we’re trying to find out where the direction come in to your particular home. The directions are influenced by your wiring, plumbing, nails and all the elements used in the construction of your home.
Apply the lo shu square
A lo shu square is similar to the feng shui bagua but is square shaped. Draw a square around your home and then divide into nine equal sectors, like the diagram below.
If you have an L-shaped house, you should be sure to include the missing sectors. If your garage is attached, include it in the lo shu square. If you have porches, they should be included if they are covered by the same roof as your house. Don’t include decks and patios if they aren’t covered by the roof of the house.
Apply the directions to the rest of the house
Once you have the facing direction, whether that is east or south or northwest, you can then apply the directions to the rest of the sectors. You’ll see in the diagram below that this home faces southwest. You can also use the same directions to determine the directions of every room in the house.
You’ll see in the diagram above the directions in blue have been noted for the living room and are according to the directions of the home. This helps you when you want to make activations. It’s especially useful for homes that are missing a corner or sector of the home, as is often the case with an L-shaped house (see the diagram below). Now, you can activate the corner of the living room that corresponds with the missing corner of your home!
What if you have have two stories to your home or a basement?
Diagram any other floors exactly the same way. However, take care that your diagram reflects the relationship of each floor to the main floor. That means if your second story isn’t exactly the same as the first story, some sectors will be missing.
I hope this article was helpful for you in creating a feng shui floor plan for your home. It’s the first and most important step in understanding your home’s feng shui.