Lucky Number Superstitions in Real Estate

Published: 06/06/2016

Lucky Number Superstitions in Real Estate

Superstitions have never quite bitten the dust, and have been passed down through generations, especially in certain cultures. This is why a lot of people in the Western world still believe the number 13 is an unlucky number, even in real estate. It explains why so many apartment blocks and a staggering 28% of streets in the UK are missing houses or flats numbered 13 – including arguably our most famous one, Downing Street. When it comes to selling and letting your property, despite the fact that few people actually believes this superstition, the unlucky number 13 can have a detrimental effect on the value of your home. We all know superstitions will not sell a home, however if you are looking to improve your chances, here are a few ideas which could increase your chances of getting lucky in real estate:

Pay Attention to Numerology!

In addition to the negative connotations associated with the number 13 in Western cultures, in other cultures specific numbers can play a significant role in how people price their homes, which properties they will or will not purchase and even how the floors of a high-rise building are numbered by developers and builders. Even though research shows most people don’t believe the number 13 is unlucky, many developers of high rise buildings in the UK still tend to skip the 13th floor entirely. The floors instead jump from the 12th to the 14th.

Real estate luck, in some cultures, is often accredited to the last nonzero digit in a sales price. For example, the number 8 in the Chinese culture is considered lucky because it’s pronounced similarly to the Chinese word for wealth and prosperity. In heavily Chinese neighbourhoods, it is common to find properties priced at, for example, £268,000 - or even £888,888 in more expensive neighbourhoods. On the other hand, the number 4 in Chinese culture is considered unlucky because it is pronounced similarly to the Chinese word for death. Therefore, according to superstition in this part of the world, it is best to stick an 8 in your sales price and forgot the 4 if you want good luck. 

The number 4 also sounds like the word ‘death’ in Japanese, whilst the number 9 is pronounced similarly to the Japanese word for ‘torture’. There are as a result many hospitals that eliminate the numbers 4 and 9 as room numbers, and in some cases even the floor numbers, whilst some Japanese airlines have no seat rows with the numbers 4 and 9. However, the number 8, in contract to in China, is considered lucky. This is due to the shape of the kanji character for 8, which suggests a better time or better things to come in the future.

Italians are superstitious about the number 17 for at least two reasons, both having to do with how it is written. The number 17 written using Roman numerals is XVII, which can be rearranged to spell the Latin word VIXI. This means “I have lived” or more pointedly “my life is over” – a phrase found on ancient tombstones. What’s more, in modern European handwriting, the number 17 resembles a man hanging from a gallows, and it is therefore considered unlucky for this reason too. 

Having said this, depending on superstitions is unlikely to help you to get lucky in real estate. If you’re looking to buy or rent a property, you should focus on finding the right home for you at the right time. Pick a professional, regulated agent, make sure they know your requirements and work closely with them - they will ensure your interests are protected and that you are provided with fair and accurate market advice. If you are renting out or selling your property, ensure that it is well presented, priced correctly for market conditions and be willing to be flexible regarding viewings. These approaches are far more likely to ensure success than superstitions governing lucky or unlucky numbers!