Increase Natural Light To Brighten Up A Dull Space
Is your home feeling dark and dreary? Do you find it hard to wake-up and get going each day? It probably goes without saying that you need more light. But artificial lighting can only go so far in brightening up your living space. Opening your home to more natural light has numerous benefits besides better sight, including lifting your mood and giving you more get-up-and-go.
Benefits of Natural Light
Boosts Mood and Productivity — Exposure to natural light can help boost your mood and research suggests it can even have a positive effect on productivity. Without enough exposure to sunlight, serotonin levels can drop, leading to depressed mood and even depression.
Keeps the Body Healthy — Exposure to natural light benefits your health in numerous ways. It can help reduce risk of obesity as sunlight suppresses hunger by stimulating production of hormones that cause cravings. Sunlight can also improve circulation, stimulate the immune system and balance the body’s hormones.
Increases Energy Efficiency — Utilizing natural light leads to substantial savings on your energy bill. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, electric lighting consumes more than 15 percent of all electricity generated in the United States. Decrease your energy dependency by increasing natural light in your home. This may also save you some money!
How to Add More Natural Light in Your Home
Boost the flow of natural light throughout your home with these tips.
Keep Colors Light — Repaint, refinish or replace dark surfaces such as walls, ceilings, floors and window trim with lighter color or finish. Light, neutral colors — especially whites — will create an open and airy feeling. Lighter hues reflect light, whereas darker colors absorb light.
Reflect the Light — Utilize mirrors to reflect natural light and give the feeling of a larger, more open space. Use large mirrors with a simple, clean-cut frame and strategically place them in spaces where they will reflect a window or surrounding furniture. In dark rooms, use two mirrors of the same size directly opposite each other to make the room feel bigger and lighter.
Go with Glass — Clear glass, Lucite and acrylic furniture designs give the illusion of spaciousness and can help make a room look less cluttered, boosting the appearance of light in any space. Look for side tables, coffee tables and accessories that feature clear surfaces.
Choose Window Coverings Wisely — While blackout curtains can help you sleep at night, keep in mind that during the day, these light-blocking curtains prevent natural light from flooding your space. To get the best of both worlds, use a layered approach to your window coverings, with a blackout shade or curtain closest to the window and light-filtering curtains in front. Blinds — even blackout-lined ones — can be used to get the same effect, simply draw them up to use the full window during the day.
Keep Clutter at Bay — Follow the rule of thumb that suggests everything should have a space to limit clutter and help your space feel larger. Opt for under-the-bed or under-the-sofa storage bins, rather than large clunky storage furniture and be sure furniture does not block windows.
Add or Replace Windows — If you own your place, perhaps a home improvement project is in order. Your old windows may have become foggy, scratched or dirty over time. Or you can open up your room by adding large windows where they didn’t exist to let in more light. Get creative with window placement. While living rooms and kitchens are ideal spaces for lots of windows, you can also add windows to stairwells and hallways to increase natural light in your home.
Install Skylights — Bring the light in from above by installing skylights or tubular daylighting devices to light up a windowless hallway or add natural light to living spaces. Tubular skylights operate completely on solar energy. The dome captures sunlight on the roof during the day, and then that sunlight travels through the mirror-like tube until it enters your home. They even work on cloudy days!
Go Transparent — Replace your solid wood front door with a wood door featuring glass panes to add light. Etched or reeded glass can be used to maintain privacy while achieving the intended purpose of increasing the flow of natural light into your home. Glass interior doors can also be used to avoid cutting off the passage of light from one room to the next.
Add Lighting — When increasing natural light simply isn’t an option in a particularly dark room in your home, increase artificial lighting by adding recessed lights or pendant light fixtures to brighten up your dark, dull space. And choose your lightbulbs carefully – your local hardware store will offer a wide range of tones and brightness levels to select from.
Getting as much natural light as possible in your home isn’t just a design choice; it’s essential for your physical and emotional health. Winter months can be even more brutal if the inside of your home doesn’t get much natural light. Make plans now to open up your home to the sunlight. If getting more natural light in your home requires a home renovation project, contact the lending professionals at PrimeLending today to learn more about how we can help you fund your project.