In astrology, the zodiac is a celestial band of 360 degrees divided into 12 sectors of 30 degrees which are called zodiac signs. These twelve segments are called astrological houses, and they represent different areas of life, the psychic and spiritual development of human beings.

The essential purpose of astrology ... is not so much to tell us what we will meet on our road, as it is to suggest how to meet it — and the basic reason for the meeting. Which quality in us, which type of strength is needed to go through any specific phase of our total unfoldment as an individual person.
— Dane Rudhyar Person Centered Astrology (1981)

The division of the zodiac in 12 houses is determined by the Earth's rotation and is called domification. There are many different methods to calculate the astrological house, and the one that I use (and most widely used) is Placidus.
At the moment you were born, the planets were all in specific signs and houses. When I will interpret your chart, I will try to blends the meaning of each planet, the house it’s in, and the sign it’s in, to map the obstacles or gifts you’ll face in this lifetime. Each house represents an area of life, and the position of the planets in the houses determines the area of life in which the planet's influence will manifest. 

The first house begins with the Ascendant, which is the point where the Earth's Eastern horizon intersects the zodiac. The first six houses are known as the personal houses, while the last six houses are known as the interpersonal houses.

The twelve houses represent twelve areas of life. The point in which begins each house is called cusp and it is connected with one of the twelve signs of the zodiac.

The Ascendant is the starting point of a natal chart and expresses the person in his most immediate manifestations, his behaviours, physical features, his health and instincts. It represents the individual's free will, the degree of autonomy and the way it is expressed to the outer world. The planets in that first house are really important because they define the personal style of the person. It coincides with the cusp of the first house, the segment that corrisponds to the physical body, personal views on life, self-identity, self-image,and how you look to others (consciously or not). It corresponds to the sign of Aries.

The Second House is of world of belongings: money gained on your own, possessions and profits, the ability to earn a living, as well as everything that has value for the individual. It specifies how you spend your own money (as opposed to other's money in the 8th house), your attitude towards wealth, and your potential for accumulating it/them. It corresponds to the sign of Taurus.

The Third House represents the range of contacts with others: the ability to communicate on an intellectual level and to gather information, the practical attitude, thinking pattern, small trips, brothers and sisters, neighbors and closest acquaintances.
Also,It indicates mental illness, the person's weaknesses in common with the father. It indicates the ideals of the spouse and the mother's illness. It corresponds to the sign of Gemini.

 An example of natal chart: Dane Rudhyar   Source:

An example of natal chart: Dane Rudhyar


The Fourth House or Imum Coeli concerns the world of the origins of an individual: family, socio-cultural roots, childhood and parental unconscious conditioning, the domestic shelter, the father, the hereditary line.  As the root or base of your real self, the 4th house rules where you go when you "die" but also where you came from. For those who believe in reincarnation, the 4th house would give clues to your karmic lesson for this lifetime. It shows what karmic baggage you brought with you into this life. If you want to have more information about the journey of your soul, you can have a Evolutionary Astrology consultation. Any planets in the 4th house affect your home life, your emotions, your subconscious, and possibly your relationship with your parents. It corresponds to the sign of Cancer.

The Fifth House is linked to the creative and entertainment world: the personal way to express creativity, to assert the identity through actions. It is also related to love affairs, children, gambling, games, and leisure activities. Here you can find information on the fertility of the individual, the problems related to the relationship with children and how to educate them. It corresponds to the sign of Leo.

The Sixth House is about the the sphere of work: daily routine and health. It also governs the relations with objects and animals. It is also related to the relationships that take place on an unequal level such as the one between boss and employee. It is associated to the sign of Virgo.

The Seventh House regards relationships and comparisons on the same level, and in particular personal relationships with complementary partners: it is the opposite house the First (which is ourselves), and it is the Descending that symbolizes the world in which we project our view, the features of a possible partner or business partner.  It is about all one-to-one relationships: marriage, business partnerships, contracts, cooperative relationships, and also divorce, separation, and law suits. It represents the sign of Libra.

The Eighth House is about sexuality and taboos, as well as the spouse's resources. Also, this is the realm of death and inheritance, life after death and emotional crises. It describes how we relate to other peoples' goods and how we deal with grief and loss. It is also representes your inner resources, transformation, healing, and the capacity for regeneration and dominate control. It is related to the sign of Scorpio.

The Ninth House is linked to everything that is "far"away: long trips, expansion of consciousness, spiritual exploration, dreams, visions, higher mind, ideas, understanding and wisdom, books, publishing, and searching for the meaning of life. In the natal chart provides information on long journeys, relationships with foreign countries and foreigners. It corresponds to the sign of Sagittarius.

The cusp of the Tenth House coincidences with the Midheaven and it is related to the fate of the individual and social position, his profession, career, power and ambition. This house encompasses the most public areas of one's life, and the career that you grow into, as opposed to daily work and odd jobs ruled by the 6th House. It is associated to the characterists of Capricorn.

The Eleventh House involves the social contacts, friendships, hopes and projects, the tendency to identify yourself with a group and to fight for a cause in which you are not personally involved. It describes our attitude towards friends, benefactors and teachers. It is also associated with new technologies and the way we relate to them. It is associated to the sign of Aquarius.

The Twelfth House is the most mysterious of the houses. It refers to the subconscious, the hidden self that exists apart from our physical everyday reality. This includes the unconscious mind, subconscious memory, subconscious habit patterns from the past, mental illness, karmic debts, self-deception, escapism, spiritual realization, limitations, frustration, and ultimately our self-undoing. It is the house of past lives and karmic origin, the house of purification and deprivation, the home of great trials as it is associated with periods of isolation and it is really important for Karmic Astrology. It corresponds to the sign of Pisces.