Finding ways to bring more natural light into your home is important. In fact, one of the top must-haves people look for when buying a new home is the presence of an open floorplan that allows plenty of natural light. Natural light and sunshine have so many positive effects on our mood and our health, and that translates into our homes.
Maybe your apartment or current home is lacking when it comes to windows, and either you just need to make the best of it or want to remodel. Or maybe you’re in the market for a new home, whether pre-existing or custom-built. Whatever your situation, you want to optimize the natural light that illuminates your home. Your home will feel more spacious, cheerful, and welcoming.
With changes that range from subtle to dramatic, here are some ways to bring more natural light into your home.
The first (and most obvious) way to bring more natural light into your home is to add more and larger windows. When custom-building a home or remodeling by adding windows, keep in mind that year-round, south-facing windows are ideal for natural light.
Also, replacing solid doors with glass doors will facilitate the flow of natural light throughout your home, rather than halting it. Large glass sliding or bifold doors increase the area of potential light relative to their function.
If you don’t have enough wall space for adding windows or doors, consider adding a skylight to allow extra natural light to stream in.
Another way to bring more natural light into your home is to open up your floor plan. With fewer walls or partitions in your home, the best sources of natural light in your home will be free to reach the parts that are lacking.
For instance, if your dining room is closed off from your kitchen, consider removing those walls so that the larger, open space will be opened up to maximize natural light from both areas.
When you’re looking for ways to bring more natural light into your home, the next thing to consider is your flooring. The right flooring can be a source of light reflection. Wooden, ceramic, or stone floors with a polished finish will reflect and magnify light much more than carpets. However, if you must have carpet, stick to light, neutral colors.
Speaking of light, neutral colors, the next tip for bringing more natural light into your home is to maintain the use of light, soft colors throughout your decor. This includes wall color, your kitchen cabinets, furniture, flooring, etc.
Soft shades of white will make a room feel more spacious and bright as it reflects the natural light within the room rather than absorbing it as a dark color would. To reflect even more light, choose a paint with a satin finish rather than a matt paint. The sheen causes an overall mirror effect to the entire room, which would be lost in a matt finish.
If you’re not ready for a major remodeling project, one of the best tips for bringing more natural light into your home is to introduce as many shiny surfaces and finishes as possible. Opting for glossy finishes for your kitchen and bathroom with shiny countertops and units will maximize the light-reflective properties of the rooms. This will make the space seem brighter and larger.
Choosing light-reflective accessories and furniture in other rooms will help continue to diffuse the natural light throughout. Glass, metallic, and mirrored accessories and shiny finishes are stylish and help optimize the use of available light.
Again, if a remodel just isn’t on the horizon, a simple thing you can do to allow more natural light into your home is to maximize the use of the windows you have. You can first do this by giving them a thorough cleaning. Dingy, dirty, old windows obstruct the flow of light through them, so a quick fix is to properly clean them, or replace them if they are old.
Another way to maximize your windows is to make sure they are completely unobstructed. Outside, trim any trees, foliage, or other greenery that might be blocking the sunlight from streaming through. On the inside, make sure no furniture pieces obstruct the window area to allow as much flow of light into the room as possible. Also, do away with any large, heavy, dark window coverings. Opt for lighter window treatments, or simple blinds to facilitate rather than hinder more light coming through.
If you’re in an apartment or rental where windows are few that there’s just nothing much you can do about it, the addition of proper artificial light can be a big help. While maximizing the natural light you do have, adding artificial light in awkward corners or dark areas will help spread the feel of the natural light throughout your space. Place lighting and lamps near a dark wall, so the wall can help reflect the light to the rest of the room.
And the type of light matters! Full-spectrum LED light bulbs are best, but there are several different lighting types for whatever feel you are aiming for in your home, so be sure to do your research.
Another great way to maximize more natural light throughout your home is to decorate with extra mirrors. Strategically placed mirrors across from windows or areas where light is coming into the room will magnify the available light.
If you’re maxed out on mirrors, another trick is to add a large piece of framed artwork to the wall. As long as the overall colors of the artwork and frame are light (preferably white for the frame) in color, the glossy finish of the glass will provide another somewhat reflective place for light to be enhanced.
When all else fails, nothing reflects the feel of more natural light in your home more than bringing nature into it. Adding some low-light tolerant plants and greenery into corners and near windows will literally clean and refresh the air in your home and bring an overall sense of lightness. Create an indoor herb garden or grow some sprouts in your kitchen that will illuminate your kitchen and your cooking!
Are you ready to custom-build a home with an open floor plan and lots of natural light? No idea is too big or too small. If you’re ready to turn your dream home into a reality, contact us today for a free consultation! At Chadwick Custom Homes, our experts are dedicated to building the perfect custom home of your dreams. So why wait? The first step is easy! Talk to one of our experts today so we can help get you into your dream forever home as soon as possible.
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