Popular Filipino Home Superstitions In Construction

Popular Filipino Home Superstitions In Construction

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There are some who believe that the prosperity of a household is determined by unseen factors reacting to special tributes and residential decisions. Because of these widespread beliefs, local architects adhere to certain traditional design elements. Though a couple of superstitions border on absurdity for tradition’s sake, there are some that are backed up by good reasoning, even improving the quality of living in one’s home.



A rather infamous bloodletting ritual that involves an animal (usually a chicken) and the designated area for construction. It is believed that the ritual will bless those associated with the structure with luck or drive away evil forces, depending on who you ask. Numerous versions of the ceremony call for different kinds of sacrifices and actions, but the overall expected outcome remains the same.



Photo courtesy of 6sqft

On the subject of numbers, it is no secret that the number 13 has always been loathed as an unlucky number. Most high-rise buildings would rarely have a 13th floor, skipping the number and labeling it as 14 to avoid scaring off the superstitious. Ironically, there is a belief that every odd number besides 13 equals positivity. This would sometimes be the deciding factor for those planning to live in a condo or an apartment.

 Oro, Plata, Mata


Translated to Gold, Silver, Death, this ominous belief has become a well-known legend among property owners and builders alike. Reminiscent of the 13th-floor superstition, Oro, Plata, Mata believes that a staircase should start and end with prosperity. As the first step means gold and the second means silver, the last step should be either of the two. Ending the stairs with Mata could be disastrous to the owner, or the architect who could get accused of bringing bad luck to a property.

Feng Shui


Photo courtesy of CGTN America

While Feng Shui is primarily a Chinese belief, many local and foreign property owners adhere to its supposed harmonizing principles. Feng Shui is the study of invisible forces that forms, energizes, and disrupts all living things, also referred to as Qi energy. Some may find studying the art complex or even expensive because when it comes to Feng Shui, everything matters. Furniture placement, window placement, trinket types, minor actions, and the likes make up most of any enthusiast’s life choices. 

House Blessing


Photo courtesy of Congregation of the Blessed Sacrament

Some say it is a practice that will cleanse the aura of a house. Others say it brings good tidings in days to come. A house is usually blessed by a priest by sprinkling holy water. This practice is considered to be less invasive compared to other home improvement superstitions. Another way of having a house blessed is to have every door open on New Year’s Eve. The belief sometimes even encourages leaving the windows and lights on to invite good fortune. Given the explosive celebrations outside, the former part is not quite encouraged for health and safety reasons. 



Give or take, spreading coins everywhere has been an easy tradition to maintain. From planting rare mints under the garden to placing change on each foot of the staircase at New Year’s Eve, coins have been a symbol of hope for superstitious people. Other related monetary superstitions include planting coins within foundation posts, having coin bowls mixed with foreign coins, and scattering coins in the living room upon moving into a new house.

 Proper Positioning


There are superstitions surrounding house placement that shed light on the importance of interior design and pre-construction planning. For starters, it is believed that a house should face the direction where the sun rises to mirror the rise of the homeowner’s prosperity. Houses facing west are the kind who would shun or avoid blessings. Likewise, kitchens are expected to be placed on the east side of the home for similar reasons and should generally avoid being placed close to the restroom for spiritual reasons. There is also the belief that doors should not be placed in parallel to doors leading outside so the good fortune does not leave. Finally, there is an amusing preference for staircases to be built rising towards the right for the sake of inviting righteousness. 

The culture of construction superstitions is usually considered odd and old-fashioned, but traditions and word of mouth have kept much of it alive. There’s nothing wrong with following these beliefs, as long as it is ensured that your home is properly built.

(Featured photo courtesy of ZipMatch)

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