Terraria NPC Housing Comprehensive Guide (2023)

Terraria NPC Housing Comprehensive Guide by Tel

Note: Despite the fact that we have been sharing our buildings with the NPCs in game for several patches now there still seems to be quite a bit of misinformation floating around these forums. This is intended to resolve some of the rumors and bad information using in-game experimentation and screenshots to clarify. This will not tell you how to make a house in the first place – there are plenty of other guides out there for that! Think of this one as troubleshooting for your house.

NPC Housing in 1.0.6

House Requirements:

In order for an NPC to consider a house a valid home it must have several things.

  1. Solid outer walls. There can be no open sections in the walls to let enemy monsters in.
  2. Backwall. Approximately 32 tiles of solid background wall with no gaps exceeding a square of 4×4 tiles.
  3. An entrance. This can be a door or a wooden platform on the floor and/or ceiling that will allow access to the room.
  4. A comfort item. This can be any one of the following: bed, bench, throne, chair, or toilet.
  5. A “flat” furniture item. This can be any one of the following: tub, table, bookcase, bench, or dresser.
  6. Lighting. The entire room must be lit – it does not matter how many light sources you use to achieve this, however no tiles may be left in darkness.

Acceptable furnature – pick one “comfort item” from the left and one “flat item” from the right.
Terraria NPC Housing Comprehensive Guide (1)

Acceptable lighting.
Terraria NPC Housing Comprehensive Guide (2)

Don’t forget the requirements to get the NPCs in the first place!:

Guide: Spawns at map creation.
Merchant: Must have 50 silver on your person.
Nurse: Must have found and used at least one crystal heart.
Demolitionist: Must have a bomb or dynamite in your inventory (as of last patch stickybombs and grenades are supposed to work as well)
Dryad: Must have killed a boss.
Arms Dealer: Must have a firearm in your inventory (Not including space gun).
Clothier: Must have defeated Skeletron

Multiplayer Only:
Second Merchant: Three players have a combined total of 50g
Third Merchant: Five players have a combined total of five platinum.
Second Nurse: Three or more players with a combined health of 400

House Size:

From my own experiments in game (new world with EoC and Skeletron killed in order to activate the Dryad and Clothier) the NPCs seem to require approximately 32 tiles worth of open space in their home.

In the following image the guide’s home has 7×5, or 35 tiles of open space inside. The merchant is equally happy with his 8×4, or 32 tiles of open space. However a smaller home with only 6×4 empty tiles of space was not eligible to attract further NPC spawns. (Note: The patterned edges are simply to make size apparent and have no bearing on the building’s qualifications as a home.) An additional home with a size of 6×5 was also not able to attract an NPC.

From this we can assume that 7×5 and 8×4 are the smallest open spaces that the npcs will accept.
Terraria NPC Housing Comprehensive Guide (3)

Height and Width:
Further experiments find our minimum width and height of valid NPC housing.

First a building was built with plenty of height but only enough width for a chair and table (three blocks of open floor space). This was not a valid home. The home was then expanded one block at a time until the arms dealer moved in. From this we can judge the minimum acceptable width of a home is six open blocks of floor space.
Terraria NPC Housing Comprehensive Guide (4)

Next a home was built with plenty of width but a mere three blocks of height. This home failed to attract any NPCs.
Terraria NPC Housing Comprehensive Guide (5)

However making the house four blocks tall instead of three was enough to convince the nurse to move in.
Terraria NPC Housing Comprehensive Guide (6)

Thus we can determine that NPCs require a minimum of six blocks of width and four blocks of height. A 6×4 home is still unacceptable however, as it does not meet the minimum requirement for open space inside the home.

Max size:

House Materials:

We all know that you can make homes for NPCs out of the usual bricks and stone, however did you know that NPCs will now accept pretty much any building block and background that you can place? Prior to patch 1.0.6 dirt walls and dungeon walls were unacceptable however this is no longer the case as long as YOU have placed the walls.

While you cannot use naturally generated caves as your NPC homes, if you take out the background wall in that cave and replace it with identical dirt, it is now valid. The same goes for the dungeon!

Here are some samples of odd/unusual building materials that many people will swear to you do not work, yet they do!

Glass house with wood wall, dirt house with dirt wall, grass house with dirt wall.
Terraria NPC Housing Comprehensive Guide (7)

Dungeon brick with dungeon wall, jungle grass with brick wall, assorted ores with brick wall (a repeating pattern of iron, silver, gold, demonite, and meteorite ores).
Terraria NPC Housing Comprehensive Guide (8)

Hellstone brick and ore walls with red brick background, mushroom grass walls with dirt background, and corruption grass walls with dirt background.
Terraria NPC Housing Comprehensive Guide (9)

Sand walls with brick background, ash walls with dungeon brick background, ebonstone with brick background.
Terraria NPC Housing Comprehensive Guide (10)

Terraria NPC Housing Comprehensive Guide (11) … ouch?

A quick note on dirt walls ( update):

As of today’s minipatch (, player placed dirt walls will now “blend” with natural dirt walls however have a slightly different appearance. In the image below the wall in the large square on the left was natural whereas the wall in the smaller square was placed. If you look closely the player placed dirt wall has flecks of dark gray in it, whereas the natural wall is only shades of brown. This makes it easier for us to remember which dirt walls are valid for NPCs.
Terraria NPC Housing Comprehensive Guide (12)
The screenshots in the section above were taken before this change so the appearance of the placed walls is still the old one.

Windows and Other Holes

Contrary to popular belief you can put windows and other holes in the background wall of your NPCs’ homes. However these must follow strict rules as well – namely that no hole can be more than four tiles tall or wide. So using your hammer to remove backwall you have reached the maximum size hole you can leave once you have removed four tiles in width and four tiles in height.

Notice that this can be fudged slightly. In the following image the leftmost house has the standard 4×4 window. The guide is perfectly happy with this. The center house however no NPC would move into – the window is five blocks tall instead of four. However the last home was perfectly fine, even with that five block tall gap, since I added wooden platforms to make a windowsill. The platform counts as a tile that will fill the gap.
Terraria NPC Housing Comprehensive Guide (13)

You can also build homes with partially broken background wall if you want it to look slightly dilapidated, however the sections taken out must follow the same rules of no gaps larger than four tiles long or wide.
Terraria NPC Housing Comprehensive Guide (14)

Unfortunately this also means that we cannot make neat patterns in backwall for our rooms due to the fact that different types of backwall always leave a 1-tile gap between the two types. So a room like the image below, while it looks good, will not work for either a bed or an NPC. You can force the room to work by lowering the ceiling by one tile so that the room is only four blocks tall, but much of the effect is lost in doing it this way.
Terraria NPC Housing Comprehensive Guide (15)

Regarding Platforms

Platforms are odd. Unlike other objects which we can pass through these will count as tiles for your walls. This is useful, as it means you do not have to put an actual door on a room that has platform access, however it can also be an issue since we like to use those same platforms as shelves. The following room is not a room an NPC will move into, despite the fact that it looks fine, because the platform shelf in the center is (to the NPC at least) no different than a section of brick wall.
Terraria NPC Housing Comprehensive Guide (16)

This odd behavior can lead to some rather entertaining results however, as apparently the demolitionist thinks that this is a perfectly acceptable home.
Terraria NPC Housing Comprehensive Guide (17)

Remember: If a room can be accessed by platform you do NOT need a door!

After some discussion later in the thread about platform floors I decided to do some more research – it turns out that NPCs will not, in fact, move into a room with an entirely platform floor; however, a single block of solid flooring is enough. The NPCs appear to need that one block as their place to stand at night and the block must be within two blocks of the furniture.

Terraria NPC Housing Comprehensive Guide (18)
A Quick Note About Doors

Wooden platforms in the floor or ceiling of a room count as a door. Doors and platforms do not have to be what we would term useful however – as long as they are contained within the room or its walls the NPCs are happy. Don’t ask me how this door is useful:

Terraria NPC Housing Comprehensive Guide (19)

Some Thoughts About Water

Water is another of those funny substances – you might have to play with it a bit to get the effect you want. In order to get NPCs to move into rooms with water I had to remove water down to about the door level. However once they were in I could flood the room (removed then replaced a block in the ceiling) and they would stay put. After flooding these rooms I built other acceptable housing on the map, however the NPCs show no indication of leaving their watery homes.
Terraria NPC Housing Comprehensive Guide (20)

That wraps up this very very long guide. If you stuck with it this far through thank you and I hope you found it useful! May your building projects be both practical and good looking!


Terraria NPC Housing Comprehensive Guide? ›

You will need to clear out any existing wall with a hammer and make a flat surface to place your house. Once you have enough room for 3 NPCs, place the Clothier, Demolitionist, and Tax Collector. Try not to place these NPCs too far away from your main base; the Demolitionist is a great source of bombs.

What is the best way to house NPCs in Terraria? ›

What are the living space requirements for Terraria NPCs?
  1. Terraria NPCs are happiest when they have a living space consisting of 60 blocks or more, though anything too large is liable to upset them.
  2. Add an entrance to their room, such as an easily-accessible door.
  3. Build walls to turn it into a proper living space.
Jun 21, 2023

How should I arrange my NPCs in Terraria? ›

You will need to clear out any existing wall with a hammer and make a flat surface to place your house. Once you have enough room for 3 NPCs, place the Clothier, Demolitionist, and Tax Collector. Try not to place these NPCs too far away from your main base; the Demolitionist is a great source of bombs.

How do you know if your house is suitable for NPC in Terraria? ›

Housing menu

The player can check whether a given house is suitable for NPC use or not, as well as manually appoint a house to a specific NPC. To check whether a house is suitable for use, press the ⚒ Use / Attack button on the "?" housing query mark and then press again anywhere inside the house.

What is the best size for an NPC house Terraria? ›

Requirements. Housing must be at least 10 tiles wide(interior). Housing must be at least 4 tiles tall(interior). Housing must have walls on all sides.

What size should a house be for an NPC in Terraria? ›

An NPC home/room must meet certain minimum size requirements. It must be at least 35 blocks large (excluding the bounding blocks that make up the ceiling, floor and walls) to be considered valid housing.

What are the best places to put NPCs in Terraria? ›

  • The Merchant, Nurse, and Arms Dealer may be placed in the Hallow to prioritize the Nurse. ...
  • It may be preferable to place the Tavernkeep and Demolitionist in the Caverns. ...
  • The Steampunker and Cyborg may be placed in the Snow biome to prioritize the Cyborg.
May 8, 2023

Does happiness matter in Terraria? ›

The Guide's happiness has absolutely no bearing on any system involving him. As such, there is no practical reason to make him happy.

Which NPC likes which biome? ›

NPCBiome preference
MerchantLikes ForestDislikes Desert
GolferLikes ForestDislikes Caverns
ZoologistLikes ForestDislikes Desert
23 more rows

How many NPC houses do I need in Terraria? ›

It's important to remember you'll need to build vacant houses before many of these NPCs will appear and move in. You'll need 26 houses for everyone to get a home of their own.

How do you make a good base in Terraria? ›

Find the closest Altar to your base, build a room around it, and place walls to prevent enemy spawns. A base should also include a crafting area in which the Player can craft items. This area should contain the most-used crafting stations like the Work Bench, Furnace, Anvil, Placed Bottle and Tinkerer's Workshop.

Can NPC rooms be underground Terraria? ›

Actually, they only can't live underground if you don't replace the walls. Natural walls are not counted for housing to be valid, you have to place your own walls.

What is the smallest possible house in Terraria? ›

The smallest size you're able to have is 3 blocks wide, 10 blocks high. Each house must have a background wall (naturally occurring background walls do not count).

How many NPCs can live in your house in Terraria? ›

18 town NPCs in regular mode. Eight town NPCs only found in Hardmode. Three NPCs that are found outside the town. Three pets that you need to purchase licenses for.

Can a Terraria house be too big? ›

To summarize, the largest possible house you can make must have an area less than 750. This includes the walls of the house. Keep in mind that it only counts 1 thickness worth of walls, so having walls 2 blocks thick will not increase the size.

Can NPCs live in Hallow? ›

Unlike Corruption/Crimson, NPCs can live in the Hallow without leaving. In fact, it is a good idea to have your base Hallowed, as this will stop the evil biomes from coming towards it.

What do NPC need in Terraria? ›

Each town NPC requires a suitable, vacant house. A house is a room of a certain size enclosed by a frame of blocks, with player-placed background walls, along with a valid light source, flat surface item, and comfort item. Two town NPCs cannot live in the same house at the same time.

Can zombies break doors in Terraria? ›

Mushroom Zombies are the only Zombies in the game that can open doors outside of a Blood Moon. Even though they are made out of tougher materials, the Lead, Stone and Iron Doors are functionally identical to the other doors.

How do you make the smallest house possible for NPCs in Terraria? ›

Houses in Terraria require complete walls and a ceiling. They need at least 1 solid block (not platform blocks) to stand on. The block cannot be next to the wall. They also need an entrance, which includes doors, platforms (they can be put in the walls too!), tall gate, and trap door.

What is the hardest NPC to get in Terraria? ›

Moon Lord is the hardest boss undoubtedly within Terraria.

What is the most useful NPC in Terraria? ›

The Goblin Tinkerer is one of the most useful NPCs in Terraria due to his ability to reforge items. This means he can change the modifiers on weapons and accessories for a price. He also sells some useful items, such as the Tinkerer's Workshop which is needed to combine certain accessories.

Can you date in Terraria? ›

you can form a relationship with any NPC now. one of my mates hit me up and said, yeah, you can just play some music box next to any NPC. and boom, all relationship is for.

Does sleeping in Terraria do anything? ›

Beds are furniture items which allow the player to set a new spawn point, or to sleep, which makes time pass 5 times faster, and gives a boost to health regeneration, similar to chairs and sofas.

Can you fall in love in Terraria? ›

Dating: After 3 days in love, the female NPC will ask you to date. You can accept or not. During courtship, the price of items that NPCs sells will be reduced by 50% and they displayed heart emoticons when close to players.

Who loves the ocean in Terraria? ›

The ocean pylon can be bought in the ocean biome. The NPCs that prefer to stay in these biomes are the Stylist, the Angler, and the Pirate. Luckily, the Pirate likes staying near the Angler, so you can use those two NPCs to get the Ocean Pylon.

What NPCs prefer the forest? ›

The Golfer, Guide, Merchant, and Zoologist NPCs now like living in the Forest, while the Dye Trader and Painter dislike it.

Which terraria NPC likes the ocean? ›

Terraria happiness
NPCPreferred BiomeLiked Neighbours
AnglerOceanDemolitionist, Party Girl, and Tax Collector
ClothierUndergroundTruffle and Tax Collector
CyborgSnowSteampunker, Pirate, and Stylist
DemolitionistUndergroundTavernkeep and Mechanic
21 more rows
Jul 15, 2020

How old is the Princess in Terraria? ›

The Princess is implied to be underage. Similar to the Angler, her sprite is shorter than most other NPCs, and they share the same death message; "<name of Angler/Princess> has left".

What gives the most defense in Terraria? ›

Maximum defense
  • Solar Flare Helmet or Hallowed Mask.
  • Solar Flare Breastplate.
  • Valhalla Knight's Greaves.

How to be lucky in Terraria? ›

To maximize luck, players should try to use biome Torches underground in their respective biomes, and avoid using the Torches for the wrong biome. They should also avoid using ordinary Torches in any biome which has its own Torch.

What is the best room size in Terraria? ›

The optimal room has: A living space of 30 blocks or more (60 when you include walls, floor, and ceiling. 750 blocks or more in total is too big).

Can NPCs go upstairs in Terraria? ›

Q. Can Terraria NPCs use stairs? NPCs can use the basic wood platform stair system to climb up or down.

Why can't I place walls underground in Terraria? ›

Dirt Walls generally completely cover the background at Underground depths above zero (see Layer, Depth Meter). Placing new walls in this area would require first tearing down the existing walls starting from the top (the Surface) or the bottom (zero depth), which can be an arduous task.

What is the largest house size in Terraria? ›

Terraria is different in that there are rules to follow. Houses must be at least 60 tiles in size, but no more than 750. This includes the walls you've built around the edges.

How close do houses need to be Terraria? ›

How far apart do two houses need to be for the NPCs not to effect each other? NPCs count as neighbors if their flags (not their houses, specifically their flags in the housing view) are within 25 blocks of each other. If you don't want two to be neighbors, build their houses so that they're over 25 blocks apart.

Why won t my NPCs move in Terraria? ›

You will need a background wall too by the way. If he simply won't move into any house, lower floor or upper floor then the room either isn't valid (in which case you will need to make sure all the walls are filled in, there is a table, chair and torch.

How many NPCs does it take to make a town in Terraria? ›

A town is a player-created mini-biome which is created when three or more NPCs are in close proximity (including the Old Man, Traveling Merchant, and town pets, but excluding the Skeleton Merchant).

Where do Terraria NPCs like to live? ›

NPCBiome preferenceNeighbor preference
SteampunkerLikes DesertParty Girl Wizard Dryad
DryadLikes JungleAngler
Witch DoctorLikes JungleNurse
23 more rows

How many houses do you need for all NPCs in Terraria? ›

It's important to remember you'll need to build vacant houses before many of these NPCs will appear and move in. You'll need 26 houses for everyone to get a home of their own.

Do NPCs stay dead in Terraria? ›

If an NPC is killed, they will respawn after a delay, as long as a suitable vacant house is still available. If the NPC has an inventory or population requirement for their initial spawn (e.g. the 50 requirement for the Merchant), that has to be met again for the respawn.

What town pets are in Terraria? ›

  • 1.1 Labrador.
  • 1.2 Pit Bull.
  • 1.3 Beagle.
  • 1.4 Corgi.
  • 1.5 Dalmatian.
  • 1.6 Husky.

What is the rarest entity in Terraria? ›

1 Slime Staff

The Slime Staff has the lowest drop chance of any item in the game and is, therefore, the rarest. This uncontested rarity is not without a good reason, though, as Slimes are the most plentiful and common enemies in Terraria.

What is the strongest entity in Terraria? ›

The Last Prism used to have the highest overall DPS of any weapon in Terraria, but it has since been surpassed by the Zenith. However, it still possesses the highest magic DPS in the game, capable of reaching up to 15,000 DPS against a single Target Dummy.

What is the rarest enemy in Terraria? ›

While the Nymph is one of the rarest enemies in Terraria, in reality, she spawns more frequently than is initially apparent. She is usually missed due to her passive and stationary behavior: she often remains in dark areas, without moving to attack players or making any sounds, unlike what most enemies would do.

Where is the best place to build a base in Terraria? ›

At the start of the game, it is recommended to build your base near your world spawn point, as you will have less danger getting to your NPCs. When you have a Bed, you can place your spawn point in a more desirable location in your base.


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