Singaporeans, who typically live with their parents all their lives at least until they get married, have practically no clue about the practicality of the direction your house faces. Except for fengshui reasons to which we would leave to the hands of a professional geomancer.
When I first started looking for apartments, I had no idea why 南向き (south-facing) is a selling point. Worse, I even thought it meant the main door faces the south. Because no one leaves their front door open, that makes it sound totally like fengshui, doesn’t it?
Only recently, when I was looking for my 5th apartment to move to did I finally learn the reason behind the secret south.
First, the direction refers to the side the windows face. These typically face either south or west, for some reason. Some property agents would try to sell you the idea that west-facing apartments are good because you get a lot of sunlight. But if you step into one at 2pm in the summer, you would realise that it can also provide you with free sauna heating. Yes, west-facing apartments can be very hot, even during early spring. Also, if you think about it, you don’t get much sunlight in the mornings.
While south-facing apartments don’t sound like you get much sunlight, they actually let in the most ideal amount of light, and the best is, it is balanced throughout the day. Further, it doesn’t get too hot since it doesn’t face the sun at all.
Download a compass app on your smartphone and you are ready to go apartment hunting! Or you can bring a geomancer.