Last updated on June 29, 2023

This popular Feng Shui rule is commonly misunderstood. Most Feng Shui beginners (and some practitioners) associate stairs facing the front door as bad Feng Shui by default. However, this is only half true and is not always the case.

Also, I noticed that when talking about this rule, many assume that the stairs are inside the house. Rarely do they talk about the Feng Shui effects of staircase right outside the front door.

In this article, you’ll learn about the Feng Shui effects of each.

Feng Shui of Stairs Facing the Front Door INSIDE the House

The Feng Shui effects of this, as noted by many practitioners, include:

Their explanations are similar – the staircase disrupts the flow of energy. The force of the Qi coming down the stairs overpowers the Qi entering the house from the front door.

But what about all the houses and mansions that we see with this setup? Like the one below?

large foyer stairs facing front door mansion red carpet min - Feng Shui of Stairs Facing Front Door (Inside & Outside)
If staircase inside the house facing the front door negatively impacts wealth, then wouldn’t the rich who move into this kind of house suffer loss of wealth?

If the Feng Shui effects are really true, wouldn’t those millionaires and billionaires who move into these houses will suffer loss of wealth? Well, that’s not that case because doesn’t really affect wealth, at least not the way you think. Plus, several assumptions were made:

  • The first assumption is that the front door is constantly used. Meaning, this setup wouldn’t be a problem if you live in a dwelling where you enter and leave the house through the garage. Qi will neither be entering from the front door, nor will it escape from the front door.
  • Second, it assumes Qi moves like human beings and uses the stairs. It is true that Qi moves from top to bottom (similar to water, but not exactly). However, Qi does not need to take the stairs. Like water, it can flow through the sides of the stairs and any openings. I have to agree, though, that a good portion of it do take the stairs because of its size and surface area.

Because of these, the Feng Shui effect of inside stairs leading straight to the front door does NOT always bring loss of income and wealth. It does, however, bring roadblocks to your wealth. Your career path will be more bumpy and have more ups and downs.

For instance, a person that’s up for promotion might get delayed, or some unforeseen events (or “acts of God”) will delay your new business or product from launching.  These events are commonly described as being “unlucky”.

Some might construe this as a loss of wealth, but that is not accurate. This setup affects income growth because of the roadblocks and headwind. It does NOT drain your wealth away.

Whether this Feng Shui effect manifests also depends on the distance between the front door and the inside staircase. If the front door is a certain distance away from the staircase, then you won’t experience any roadblocks to your income growth, let alone loss of wealth. One explanation is that big foyer allow energy to settle and nourish the space. This also explains why the mansions inhabited by millionaires and billionaires doesn’t drain away their wealth.

front door inside stairs short distance min - Feng Shui of Stairs Facing Front Door (Inside & Outside)
It is best to have more space between the front door and the stairs to avoid the effects of bad Feng Shui.

How much space do you need between the front door and the inside stairway? I suggest you consult with an expert or take professional Feng Shui courses to find out.

What about all those talk about losing wealth? Are they completely untrue? Not quite because it has to do with the stairs on the outside.

Feng Shui of Stairs Facing the Front Door OUTSIDE the House

This setup is when you see a staircase going downward to the road when you open your front door, like the image below.

front door stairs outside min - Feng Shui of Stairs Facing Front Door (Inside & Outside)
Stairs facing the front door on the outside the house.

Interestingly enough, not many practitioners talk about the Feng Shui effects of this on the web. However, Feng Shui masters in Asia do mention this and their Feng Shui effect in their books:

  • “Wealth goes down the stairs like a slide”. It is hard to acquire and preserve wealth.
  • Relationships will be affected from verbal arguments. At worse, it can bring lawsuits. This is because of the shape of this setup looks similar to a mouth (the door) and a tongue (the staircase). In Mandarin, the phrase “mouth tongue” means verbal disputes (which includes lawsuits because they are a form of verbal dispute).

From experience, this setup mainly affects wealth and not so much verbal disputes. To be specific, it affects your ability to preserve wealth. It does NOT affect your ability to acquire wealth (which is determined by other Feng Shui factors such as how you gather auspicious Qi in your house). In other words, there’s a tendency for you to incur high expenses, whether voluntary or involuntary.

This is because of the way Qi flows. As mentioned earlier, Qi flows from high to low places. When the front door opens, the Qi gathered in the house will flow outwards because of the difference in elevation.

Several factors need to be met for this to manifest:

If you understand the concept of Qi flow, you’ll notice that the said Feng Shui effect isn’t actually caused by the stairs, but rather, the house’s elevation relative to the road. That means if your stairs lead to a front yard where its elevation is close to where the house is, then the said Feng Shui effect won’t manifest.

What About Houses on Lower Grounds?

If houses on higher grounds makes it hard for you to preserve wealth, then would the opposite be true? Would it be easier to preserve wealth when your house is on lower grounds? Not exactly.

This just means you won’t have a problem with wealth preservation caused by Feng Shui. It does NOT mean that Feng Shui will assist you with wealth preservation. Depending on the house’s surrounding elevation and other factors, this setup sometimes brings sickness to the occupants of the house.

descending outside stairs to front door min - Feng Shui of Stairs Facing Front Door (Inside & Outside)
A long set of stairs that leads down to the front door is usually NOT a good Feng Shui setup.

This is why checking the elevation of the house’s surrounding is extremely important when assessing the Feng Shui of a house. Elevation alone can often make or break the Feng Shui of the house because of the strength of the incoming Qi.


With a better understanding of Qi flow, do you see why many of the cures for stairs facing front door is completely useless? Do you really think placing a red carpet, a crystal, a Bagua mirror, or wind chimes can stop the Qi flow?

If you have this setup, don’t sweat. Most of the time, there are creative and cost-efficient ways to implement a cure. The masters, through their practice, knowledge, and experience, know how to turn negative Qi to auspicious ones. You can find these masters in the Feng Shui directory here.

Leave a Reply

  1. Ray

    Hi , How this applies to countries like Scandinavia? Because all houses built on a 1-3 feel higher ground to protect from Snow and winter. So you have a couple of steps to climb to get to the main door.

    Most of the houses in Scandinavia have two doors( door open outwards and once you enter the door open inwards to the house ) and or double grassing windows to protect and avoid cold coming inside the house in the winter.

    Other hand, as you explained, if it’s bad luck to climb a few steps towards the main door and entrance of the house , how are you going to explain things like the old Royal palace or Emperor’s palace structure?They are built on higher ground and overlooking the view. Example imperial palace china or Forbidden city palace in Beijing, China, these are wealthiest dynasties and powerful rulers exist on chinese culture that build with feng shui techniques.

    Second example, White house america, Congress House America build on a higher ground

    Third Example Windsor Castle in England and Royal palace in England build on a higher ground and steps towards the main entrance. Does it mean that the Royal family in England will lose their wealth because they step towards the main door?

    1. Victor Cheung Listing Owner

      Hi Ray,
      Great observation. For residential, a few feet higher is not a problem. Also, you need to check the “grounding area”, or the amount of space in front of the door. For instance, the image with the blue door you see on this page is totally fine because it’s not that much higher. (I couldn’t find a good image) For palaces, there’s usually a big “grounding area” between the front door and the stair. (Palace Feng Shui has more macro/surrounding that just this one factor that we’re talkinga bout. Plus, don’t forget the other two factors in the cosmic trinity.)
      Also, higher expense does NOT equate to “losing wealth”. The Feng Shui setup of many places can acquire massive wealth where the expenses are minuscule compared to income amount.
      The easiest way to check is – when you open the front door and just stand there. Does air come in or out? (assuming the temperature of both the inside and outside are the same, and there is no open window/backdoor straight at the other end) In most cases, this is not a big issue. But you’d be surprised to see this is an issue in dense Asian cities where the unit has a garage. See this image:

  2. Melissa

    Hi Victor. I need help…our front door faces south east. I think all 3 of us need to face west. We’ve had the worst luck living here, we’ve been sued 3 times and our revenue stream is suffering. We’ve been tryingto movefor 3 or so years and nothing is out there.What can we do??

    1. Victor Cheung Listing Owner

      Hi Melissa,
      Keep your head up and keep searching. Once you’re at the worst point, things will only get better.

  3. Debra

    Hello Victor,
    Your article was very interesting especially as I have stairs that face the front door and I have placed a crystal above the first step!!
    I have another question for you if you don’t mind.
    We are selling our house and moving to a smaller house which is opposite a reserve which has lots of trees facing the front of the house some of which are gum trees which are bare tree trunks with foliage at the top. There is also a post with a sign opposite the house which states that the land is a reserve.
    I have read that this is a problem and if so what do I do to counteract this?
    Many thanks,

    1. Victor Cheung Listing Owner

      Hi Debra,
      From what you’ve described, I don’t see any problem. If this concerns you, I suggest you find a professional to take a look.

  4. yvona

    hi Victor just curious what if the head board of your bed is facing directly to a door to an enclosed empty space intended for aircon exhaust?

    1. Victor Cheung Listing Owner

      Hi Yvona,
      It is best to have your headboard be placed against a wall for support.

  5. Mary mcgreevy

    I live in a Chinese neighborhood in San Francisco, single family homes where the Chinese rarely greet each other or me, the very long time Irish-American owner.
    But for years now,
    Some kind of weird voodoo items appear at the very top of our our front stairs, such as walnut halves,
    Bobby pins, chicken bones,
    A dried monkey hand,
    And today, a Luger bullet casing. I have ignored all this “voodoo”
    For years. But a bullet casing? What do you think, are any of these items connected to Chinese belief systems?

    1. Victor Cheung Listing Owner

      Hi Mary,
      I don’t think any of these items are connected to the Chinese belief system, but I am no expert on this or any voodoo. From the stories I’ve heard, if voodoo really takes place, they don’t need to place anything outside of your front door. I do think that someone’s trying to mess with you though, maybe some teenagers that have plenty of time on their hands.

  6. Ruby

    I’m thinking of having my front yard landscape redo and that includes putting concrete stairs but I’m having a second thought about it now?
    I have a contractor design this for me. So please let me know weather this is a good idea or not?

    1. Victor Cheung Listing Owner

      Hi Ruby,
      I can’t comment unless I see the floor plan. I suggest you seek out professional service to help you with this.

  7. Kris Law

    I live in an 800 sq ft apartment flat in section 2 wangsa maju. As you walk up the stairs to the first floor, on the first door on my left is my apartment door. Is there anything I can do for good Feng Shui since my front door is where tenants pass by to get up and down via stairs?

    1. Victor Cheung Listing Owner

      Hi Kris,
      This is quite common and nothing detrimental. if the noise and traffic of passerby’s don’t bother you, there’s nothing you need to do. Some people I know would prefer having double doors just so they feel safer.

  8. Verum

    Hello Victor,

    I have to pinpoint the fact that you didn’t refer in this article about another case: the home is NOT underground, but at ground level or above it and it has an OUTSIDE staircase directly facing the main door that goes ASCENDING from that level to the next, higher one (for example a staircase that could be situated in a building of apartments and you have in front of your front door and outside of it stairs going upward). 😀 What about this case?
    Nice article!

  9. Nguyen

    Hello Victor,

    I’m looking to buy a house with two stories. Behind it’s back yard is a small park. The back yard has concrete wall with tall trees surround the back of the house. Is location for this house auspicious? There is also a large electrical box on the right side of the front lawn. Is there any problem with it? If so how can we fix it (regarding to the back & front yard situation). Thank you very much for your wonderful tips. I’m learning a lot from them.

    1. Victor Cheung Listing Owner

      Hi Nguyen,
      I don’t see any problem with what you described. However, I cannot answer whether the location is auspicious or not because that requires a lot more work to find out.

  10. cyndi lam

    Hello Victor,

    my inside stairs facing front door. What should I do to avoid money going out? Thank you.

    1. Victor Cheung Listing Owner

      Hi Cyndi,
      This is a little difficult to remedy, but you may not even need a remedy at all assuming you’ve read this article. If you haven’t noticed big expenses after a while, I suggest you not worry about it.

  11. Grace

    Hi Victor,

    Our house currently has double doors. The main door (right door) opens up directly to the staircase that is against the wall on one side and open railing on the other. To the left of the staircase is the large living room that has a high vaulted ceiling.

    We are remodeling our house and thinking of changing the double door to a single door (for fengshui purposes). We are thinking about putting the door on the left side of the door frame so that it does not open straight to the staircase, but rather to the living room. There are two options for door sizes: 36″ and 40″. When the 36″ door is opened 90 degrees, about 8″ of staircase is visible. If the 40″ door is opened 90 degrees, about 12″ of the staircase is visible.

    We prefer the 40″ door because it looks nicer, but are concerned that it will open up too much into the staircase (12″). We are okay with going with a 36″ door if it is better for fengshui purposes. What would you advise?

    We also read that some people hang a crystal with a red string between the door/staircase. So we were thinking of doing that in addition to changing the door. What is your opinion on the crystal solution?

  12. Leah

    I saw a cute rental today where I would go up 3 steps to get to the front door and when you open the front door leads straight to a stairway to the second floor. It sounds bad right?
    However, the front door opens to a front yard, and the actual street is further out. There is a duplex between this unit and the street. I would have to walk on the drive way with many steps to get to the street. Please let me know what you think of this rental, I really like it. :/

    1. Victor Cheung Listing Owner

      Hi Leah,
      The front yard part sounds great, but for the stairs, I can’t comment further without taking a look. I suggest you hire an expert to help you with this.

  13. A

    When they talk about not putting stairs at the center of the house, do they mean like if the house was a clock, don’t put the stairs at the axle for the clock hands, or do they mean like, don’t put the stairs where the number 12 o clock or number 6 o clock label would be?

    1. Victor Cheung Listing Owner

      Hi A,
      The idea of stairs in Feng Shui is in relation to how the Qi flows, not based on the clock.

      1. A

        Sorry, I didn’t mean to say the clock was involved. I was just using that as a visual description.

        There is general advice to not locate stairs in the center of the house. But I cannot find advice on what counts as “The center of the house” — it would be more obvious if stairs did not take up so much room. Does this mean that no part of the stairs can be near the center of the house? Or does it mean that the center of the stairs should not be aligned with the center of the house?

        Here is an illustration to clear up my confusing clock comment earlier:

        In this picture, are the stairs in both the top and bottom options considered to be “at the center of the house”?

        In option A on the top, the stairs are circled in purple. In option B on the bottom, the stairs are circled in orange.

        In option A, the stairs are centered on the geometric center of the house.

        In option B, the ends of the stairs come close to the geometric center of the house, but don’t quite reach.

        Sorry for the confusion and thanks!

  14. aby


    Our apartment is on ground floor and main door going inside our apartment is in front of the stairs going first floor… one more thing when you go inside our main door it is facing a wall …what are the cure? thank you so much.

  15. Aye

    Hello,our main door is facing the outside stairs going first floor..what can be the cure? Thank u so much

    1. Victor Cheung Listing Owner

      Hi Aye,
      If there is a good distance (a landing area) between the door and the stairs, there’s nothing to worry about.

      1. Aye

        Hello again thank you so much for your reply highly appreciated.. distance is only 3.27 meters from our door to the stairs is that ok?

        1. Victor Cheung Listing Owner

          Yes, that’s plenty of space. No worries.

  16. Jessica

    My front door opens to stairs going up. The distance is between 2 and 3 feet. They aren’t completely lined up, but partially are. Should I hang a crystal here to direct the chi? Thank you

    1. Victor Cheung Listing Owner

      Hi Jessica,
      If they aren’t completely lined up, the effect is much weaker. You can definitely hang a crystal there if you’d like.

  17. Lan

    Hi Victor! Love your page here. We have a split level home so the double front doors open into both the stairway going up on the right and going down on the left, but there’s a decently large landing area when you open the doors (to take off your shoes/etc) before deciding if you go up or down. It’s about 6 or so steps both up and down. Is this bad luck? If so, anything we should do? Thanks so much really appreciate you.

  18. Nadia

    Hi Victor

    Just wondering about staircases outside the home that is not part of the home itself but the building structure. E.g. a flat/multistorey building and the building stairwell, quite a few metres away, is facing the front door going down. Does this affect the home’s fengshui?


    1. Victor Cheung Listing Owner

      Hi Nadia,
      For multi-story buildings and apartments, you wouldn’t have to worry about the stairs facing the building’s front door because (1) you have no control over it and (2) it has very little impact on your home’s Feng Shui. Rather, you should focus on the most “Yang” side of your apartment, which is usually not where the front door is. See this:

  19. Katia Lossano

    Hi Victor, I recently moved to a rented house and the front door is aligned to the first set of stairs, it lands in the living room/dining room, but the stairs continue in the same direction to the 2nd floor, directly aligned with a bedroom.
    The space between the front door and the stairs is only 110 cm. And again, the space between the 1st set of stairs and the second is about the same distance.

    Does a crystal ball hanging in the ceiling between the front door and 1st step fix this?
    Should I hand another one before the bedroom door, where the stairs finish?

    Is there another way of using a crystal ball, like on top of a side table or console?

    I placed a small mirrored (60 cm tall x 20 cm wide), square side table in the space between the first stairs and the second, with a decorative world globe on top of it, since it is positioned on the lower right side of the house (where is the entrance door). Does it fix it? I thought about the mirror to help the flow of energy getting in and from going out.

    I have been searching a lot, but I didn’t find much about mirrored furniture.

    Thank you so much!