What Is The Best Direction For A Backyard To Face?

Ossiana Tepfenhart
by Ossiana Tepfenhart
A backyard is an opportunity to create a small oasis on your property. The direction that your backyard faces makes all of the difference when it comes to sunlight and traffic. Follow along as we explore the factors that determine the ideal direction for a backyard to face.

When you’re building your home, you are in control of everything, including the orientation of your house. That small detail is something most people don’t think about but can make a huge impact on how you experience your home. After all, the direction your house faces will impact your heating, parking, as well as the amount of sunlight you get. So, what is the best direction for a backyard to face?

The ideal direction for your backyard to face all depends on your home’s build, your area, plus what you want to accomplish with your new home. Most people prefer to have a house that faces East or South, since it lets you make the most of the sunrise and sunset in your routine. However, it’s important to keep an eye on what you’ll get from each room.

Trying to figure out your house’s orientation choices can be rough, especially if you’re not sure what perks your orientation can get. This guide will give you a better idea of how to orient your backyard.

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What Is The Best Direction For A Backyard To Face?

For the most part, this is a matter of personal preferences and priorities. Sometimes, you won’t have much of a choice when it comes to your orientation. However, there are certain elements that can come into play that may make you think harder about what you can do. These include:

  • Sunlight
  • Home heating
  • Feng shui
  • Solar panel usage

To get a better idea of what to expect, let’s talk about how the sun’s position can impact your overall experience in your home.

Video: Which Direction Should Your Home Face?

What Are The Perks Of Getting A Backyard That Faces North Or South?

  • Great sunrise views are a given. A backyard that faces North or South means that you will be able to watch both the sunrise and sunset from most of your windows. If you have a bedroom that faces South, you’ll be greeted with tons of sun throughout most of the day.
  • Your home will be warmer. The Southern part of your house will be the portion of your home that gets the most sunlight during the day, since it’s literally going to be exposed to the sun from sunrise to sunset. So if your backyard faces South, you’ll get more warmth. If your backyard faces North, you will get less sun back there, which can lead to cooler temperatures.
  • You might be able to save money on energy. If you have solar panels, having a home that faces North or South means you’ll get sun exposure throughout the day. This can lead to lower energy costs, since your solar panels will be able to contribute to your bills.  The trick here is to have the widest portions of your house facing North and South so that your home can soak up the sun’s worth.

What Are The Perks Of Getting A Backyard That Faces East Or West?

Most people who build their own homes like to have their homes facing East or West, with East being the most popular choice. Here’s why people prefer these orientations, and why you might want to work with them:

  • Having a backyard that faces East or West means that each side of the house will get its own fair share of sunlight. The sun rises in the East, so bedrooms that face East will get amazing views of the sunrise. Rooms that face West will get to enjoy sunset views on a daily basis.
  • If you have a backyard that faces East, you’ll avoid the hot summer sun. The shade from your home might be able to protect you from sunburn s, especially in the afternoon.
  • Having a backyard that faces West means you’ll get extra sun. If you live in a colder area, this can be a major blessing. This also can be a major boon for people who love gardening in bright sunlight.
  • North winds won’t hit your home as hard. Worried about having the wind slam open your doors? A home that has a latitudinal orientation means that you won’t have to deal with Northern winds.

Is There Any Direction That Doesn’t Come With Benefits?

Honestly, each home orientation has its own perks and pitfalls. Saying that there’s a “best” direction is a lot like saying that there’s going to be a best ice cream flavor. Everyone has their own preferences, and what you get will vary depending on what your lot is surrounded by. So, if you’re wondering what would be the best direction for you, think objectively about what your lot offers.

If you’re not sure which direction would work best for your house, consider talking to an architect or a civil engineer. They often will be able to offer up advice that might not be immediately visible to others.

Superstitions Dealing With Home Placement

There are multiple sets of beliefs that deal with the ideal placement of a house, and while you shouldn’t place your entire decision on them, it is pretty interesting to know what other cultures believe. Here are some of the most prominent beliefs dealing with home placement:

  • In the Feng Shui belief system, the best direction for a backyard to face is determined on your unique chart. However, most homes can keep it on the safe side by having their house’s backyards installed East or North. Ideally, your backyard will be larger than your front yard in this practice.
  • Hindi beliefs suggest that the front yard should face East or North. This is because these directions allegedly invite prosperity and wealth to one’s home.
  • Many Asian cultures believe that you need to have at least one window facing East. It’s said that not having a window facing this direction could be a bad omen.
  • Avoid living near a “T” intersection. This Feng Shui superstition suggests that busy streets and intersections can cause misfortune to arrive at your home. The idea is that intersections tend to direct energy in a negative way.
  • If you’re building a new home, choose a new lot. Many Western communities believe that building a new home on an old lot could potentially foretell the early death of a family member. However, this probably isn’t true, considering how many homes are rebuilt in cities without a hitch.

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Our Final Take

It’s not really possible to say that there is an objectively ideal direction for every house to face. That’s because each direction has its own perks and pitfalls, especially when you take into consideration the overall layout of the lot that your home will be on.

If you’re currently at the crossroads of trying to figure out which way your backyard should face, think about how the sunlight will affect your lifestyle throughout each season…and think about what amenities each orientation offers you.

Though there are a lot of objective things to keep in mind, it seems like keeping your home positioned a certain way also invites a lot of superstitious beliefs.

People who are major fans of Feng Shui or who have a deep sense of superstition may want to check what beliefs come with the orientation of their home. After all, it always helps to have luck on your side, don’t you think?

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Ossiana Tepfenhart
Ossiana Tepfenhart

Ossiana Tepfenhart is an expert writer, focusing on interior design and general home tips. Writing is her life, and it's what she does best. Her interests include art and real estate investments.

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