IF you ask any seasoned property investor how important the principles of Feng Shui in the investment journey are, I believe you will get a bag of mixed comments. Some investors swear by it and will not make a single move without consulting their expert, while others put it all to being nothing but hogwash and old wives’ tales.
Feng Shui is a system of laws that are thought to govern spatial arrangement and orientation in relation to the flows of energy (qi) and those favourable and unfavourable effects that are taken into account when designing buildings.
The Indians have their own version of Feng Shui called Vastu Shastra. This is a traditional Hindu system of architecture, which translates to “science of architecture”. They basically govern the principles of design, layout, measurement, ground preparation, space arrangement and spatial geometry.
So the question that begs to be answered is, does Feng Shui matter when you are purchasing a property? You may or may not believe these things, but if you are a serious property investor, you cannot afford to ignore it completely. How much you choose to believe in this, and how much it affects your purchase decisions are entirely a judgment call situation.
A savvy investor will keep in mind these principles and try to incorporate at least some of them into property purchase.
Besides Feng Shui and Vasta Sashtra, the average Malaysian is accosted daily with a variety of myths, folklores and taboos when making property purchase decisions. If you decide to follow closely all these dos and don’ts, I believe you will probably end up buying nothing.
However, there is a chance that in the event you decide to sell your property, the future prospective purchaser will also be guided by these dos and don’ts. Therefore, it will make sense for you to take these beliefs into consideration.
Some of the more common practices and beliefs are:
This is easily the most common belief in Malaysia. Most people will simply not buy a property if it is facing a T-junction. If you do end up buying one of these properties, the vendor may have to be prepared to give you a hefty discount.
The Direction facing the house
This is less of an issue because different people have different preferences when it comes to the direction the house faces. In fact, the jury is still out as to how this is determined. Do you stand facing the house or do you stand inside the house facing out to determine the direction?
Overhead Electric Wires / Substations
Many people avoid these properties like the plague, although all houses would be set back at a safe distance from any electrical installations.
The Level of the House Is Lower Than the Main Road
To many house owners, it is a taboo for their property to be sitting on a level that is lower than the main frontage road. Most people prefer to buy houses that are level to or higher than the frontage road.
Proximity to Places of Worship
Many people would be reluctant to purchase properties that are close to places of worship, even if these places serve their own religion. The thinking behind the practice is, of course, the concern that the pool of prospective future purchasers may be significantly reduced.
There are many other myths and beliefs that property purchasers are concerned with. What you should follow and discard as unfounded is entirely up to you. My best advice is to exercise sound common sense and financial principles when going on your property journey. That should keep you safe.
Happy hunting and may the force be with you.
The writer is a real estate practitioner who tries to manage the labyrinth of the property market honestly while consistently maintaining a high standard of ethics. He welcomes feedback at [email protected].