|This discussion wouldn't be complete without a tongue-in-cheek nod to Supernatural fans|
First thing to recognize is that your home is going to have spirits that belong there. These are your ancestor spirits, and any household spirits you may work with. I would add to this friendly local spirits of the place or you're really not going to have a fun time if you are not making nice with the friendly spirit neighbors. This last part comes with practice, so let's just focus on your ancestors and your household spirits.
Your ancestors are quite simply critical to your home defense. You need a physical space dedicated to them and your interactions with them. Allen Kardec Spiritism influenced traditions in Latin America use a 'white table' and this is in my mind quite the useful practice that everybody should be thinking about using. I'm also partial to Martin Coleman's similar concept he puts forward in his essential book on Necromancy, "Communing with the Spirits: The Magical Practice of Necromancy." A white table will usually be covered with a white table cloth or a white cloth inherited from family. On it you place pictures of relatives, your ancestors. Items you inherited from them that have special meaning are also good to add, glasses of water, white candle(s) and possibly their favorite foods, alcohol(s) and incense. Frankincense and Myrrh would be best. The best location is in a corner of the kitchen, and worst location is in your bedroom. Set at chair at this table because you'll be getting comfortable here every day at the same time for about 30 minutes being open and interested in whatever your ancestors may be trying to communicate. Keep your life-line to your ancestors constantly open and working, because this is your source of power and knowledge - this is also your most essential line of defense. If your ancestors are not happy, your life is going to be open to all sorts of hostile influences because your ancestors and you are pulling in two or more directions.
Your household spirits are also essential, as additional guides, mentors, magical familiars, divinatory spirits, and household guardians and potentially spiritual lovers. These also should have their own personal spaces they don't share with others unless it is a working altar with two or more spirits that will work together well toward a specific goal in mind. A separate room, a hallway or possibly the living room are good places for their shrines though you should protect them from prying eyes and definitely shouldn't post current altar photos or name the spirits specifically by name unless you want to give the opportunity for those that are your enemies to road block your spirits. For your primary spirit you work with I personally think it is fine to have in the primary bedroom, but if you have all your shrine space in that room your probably not going to get a whole lot of quality rest. Get them situated in their special shrines, keep them clean and offerings refreshed (don't leave old perishable offerings on altars). Also, surprise, surprise, your plants - yes you heard me right are important guardians in and your home. Some of the best protective plants are the herb, Basil, and the trees Holly, and Hazel. A Basil that has shriveled even though it has been ably cared for, can be a clear sign it just took a pretty big hit on your behalf. To bestow their protection specifically on your home, place shed Holly leaves above your exterior doors, and place Hazel wands hung in your windows. Also useful plants for sanctifying and purifying a space is the herbs Rosemary, Mint, and Marjoram. Consider growing Lavender as well as it promotes a peaceful home. You can use all four of these herbs separately as a floor wash or specifically Rosemary, Mint, and Marjoram together to clear away the negative that builds up in homes (or that invades it). There are also good premade floor washes like Chinese Floor Wash, Florida water, or the old household cleaner Pinesol that will perform this spiritual cleaning task with excellence. If you have them, place fresh Holly leaves above the door after a cleaning, burning the old leaves and returning to your living tree.
Not all spirits are friendly however. You get hungry ghosts, empty spirits such as larvals and these feed upon the living if care, caution, or you just haven't kept up with your home. They thrive in chaotic environments. These attract them. Also, extreme emotions. Obsession, is perhaps the worst because these spirits move in pretending to be your beloved ones and are adept at hiding the true state of things. Spiritual baths help strip off these parasitical spirits and bring relief. There are a number of these prepared bath salts, herb packets or even homemade soaps that do this job so well, nevertheless I will provide some links to be able to find some of them: waters, baths, bath crystals, liquid baths, Luck Mojo bath packets. For those cases that still hang on after this with the spirit firmly entrenched and entangled with your own, their are exorcisms like this one: Golden Dawn style exorcism, also Golden Dawn derived: Lesser Banishing Ritual of the Pentagram (also useful before performing other rituals).
Observing these tips, and your home will stay secure, and the useful interactions with spirits you want to work with will go a whole lot smoother. Feedback is welcome on this blog entry. Part II will follow up with the topic of Spirit Lovers, the strong historical support the practice of gaining spirit lovers has, the purposes and uses such a spirit lover has (in brief) beyond being an erotic encounter in the dark of night, and some of the spirits you can approach or rituals you can perform to receive a spirit lover of your own.