After collecting the keys for our new HDB BTO, we were quite unsure of how to go about the door opening rituals. Luckily, our Feng shui master, Master David Tong advised us on the procedures. Our auspicious date to open the door for the first time was calculated by him too. You can read about our experience with Master David Tong here. If you are not particular, you can choose a door opening date using this online almanac; just follow the simple rules below:
1. Choose a date that has “大吉” listed under it.
2. The date should have “动土” listed under “宜”.
3. Ensure that there are no zodiac clashes. For example, if it says “属狗犯冲”, it means no one with the Dog zodiac sign is allowed to enter the house that day.
1. Roll a Pineapple!
On opening day, we went up to our new house and knocked three times on the door before opening it. As I entered the house, I rolled a pineapple to the middle of the living room and shouted HUAT AH. This symbolizes ushering in of prosperity and wealth. For the fun of it, I rolled the pineapple to all corners of the house (except the toilet) while shouting HUAT AH. As we walked around the house, we said many auspicious phrases loudly too. Below are eight auspicious phrases you can use.
2. Open all the Doors and Windows
Next, we quickly opened all the doors and windows. This brought much needed wind and fresh air into the house. It also symbolizes the renewal and cleansing of Qi energies in the house. Make sure you bring along a door stopper for your main door so that you can let wind in, if not it will be very hot!
3. Sprinkle Salt at All Corners of the House
After that, we sprinkled salt at all corners of the house. This is because salt is believed to be able to chase away spirits and ghosts, which hide in corners. We threw the final remaining salt out of the house to symbolize getting rid of all the “unclean” things.
4. Sprinkle Green Beans and Rice All Over the House
Next, we sprinkled a mixture of rice and green beans all over the house, including the toilet and service yard. Rice represents abundance of food.
As for the green beans, the sprouting of the beans is supposed to symbolize many offspring. This was a practice in the old days when the beans could sprout in the village houses. However, since this is not possible in the HDB context, we brought a plastic container with wet cotton wool instead and planted the beans on top (in addition to sprinkling on the floor). This was advised by Master David Tong. We placed the container in the middle of the living room beside the fruits.
5. Put Fruits in the Centre of the Living Room
We also put plenty of fresh fruits in the middle of our living room! Below are the fruits we brought. There are no strict rules to this and you can put any fruits you want except for pears.
5 Apples (symbolizes safety)
5 Oranges (symbolizes prosperity)
5 Pomegranates (symbolizes opportunities)
One bunch of Grapes
One bunch of Bananas
6. Religious Rituals
Our parents performed some religious rituals as well. We will not go into details for this because it varies based on different people and types of religions.
7. Clear all the Items 3 Days Later
We left the house feeling happy that we had gotten to a good start for our home journey. About one week later, we went back to clear all the items. We were very happy to see that the green beans had sprouted beautifully!
According to Master David Tong, we needed to wait for a minimum of three days after our door opening date to clear the items. And we can only clear the green beans after they have sprouted. However, we can go in with anyone anytime after door opening day; there is no need to wait till three days later.
Below is a consolidated list of things to bring for your door opening day:
List of auspicious phrases saved on your phone for reference
Door stopper for main door (important to let wind in)
One container of salt
One container with mixture of green beans and rice
Bottles of water (for drinking in the hot weather, and for the green beans)
One container with cotton wool (for the green beans)
One bunch of grapes
One bunch of bananas
Newspaper or mat for laying the fruits
Small stools for resting (optional but very useful)
And that’s it! Please take note that you will find many variations of the door opening rituals online which may not be very accurate. For us, we followed Master David Tong’s rituals so that we could bring positive energy into the house. However, there is no need to feel stressed out if you forgot any of the rituals or procedures. I hope you found this article useful for your HDB door opening ceremony!