Natural light does nothing but wonders for the home, so here are a few ways you can take it from an occasional houseguest to a long-term tenant.
We’ve already spoken about the many benefits of natural light in the home – increased productivity, a calming effect, and improved moods – just to recap. And whilst there are many ways to help facilitate an increase in the amount of natural lighting in your house, not everyone is in a position to install a giant glass wall or a large skylight in their living room.
Fortunately for those people – there’s plenty of notably less drastic (and much easier) ways to increase the amount of natural light found in your interior environment.
So here are a few of our favourite ways to, literally, lighten up at home.
Yep, you read that correctly. Now – we aren’t here to announce the invention of a natural light vacuum that you can use to physically funnel outdoor light indoors, but hear us out here.
Firstly, increasing natural light in your home can often be achieved simply by removing outdoor obstructions.
So before you even think about making any physical changes to your home, consider trimming some hedges, checking for trees and getting on top of any other potential lighting obstructions on your property. It might just make all the difference.
Of course, it’d be plain irresponsible of us not to mention that you can only deal with obstructions on your own property. So for those of you unable to bulldoze obstructions owned by your neighbours (yes, this includes their homes), don’t fret – we’ve got some ways to amplify the natural light you already get indoors.
Employ Soft Lighter Colours
It’s common knowledge that lighter wall colours tend to enhance the effects of natural light. But this little bit of interior design sorcery can apply to not only your walls, ceilings and floors – it’s also usable in your decor and curtains too.
So if you’ve been looking for a reason to refresh your indoor paint jobs, or just want to pick up some new furniture – here you go. Just remember to opt for softer, lighter colours if a natural light surplus is your end goal.
When thinking of painting your walls, you should also consider using the finish of your paint to manipulate natural light indoors.
Interior paint tends to come in these main finishes – hi-gloss, semi-gloss and satin/low sheen/matte.
Nowadays, the conventional wisdom is that you’d use a satin/low sheen/matte finish on your walls and a semi or hi-gloss finish on your skirting, cabinetry, trims and doors. This is because paint with a lower sheen tends to hide imperfections (often found on walls) and paints with a higher gloss finish are harder wearing (as your skirting/trims/doors and cabinetry tend to take more abuse over time).
Now that’s all well and good, but if natural light is a priority of yours – consider breaking away from this line of thinking. The higher the level of gloss, the higher amount of light reflected (often referred to as the light reflective value).
Now, we wouldn’t personally recommend going for a full hi-gloss finish on your interior walls – imperfections will stand out like nothing else and the high level of reflected light will make it hard to appreciate the colour of the wall.
However, by opting for a semi-gloss or satin finish, you can take advantage of the higher levels of light that these finishes will reflect – distributing more natural light around your indoor environment.
On the subject of interior decor, there’s another light-multiplying method you can employ lighter colours just aren’t your thing.
Reflective surfaces bounce light – and this includes natural light. Whether you decide to hang up some new mirrors or install other sorts of reflective surfaces like stainless steel or polished marble – it’ll all help to disperse natural light around the home.
Replace Your Doors
If you’re using solid doors on your house, you’re potentially leaving some natural lighting knocking. So invite it in by swapping these doors for ones with glass panels. If privacy is a concern (and this tip works for windows too), you can install blinds to let the light in on your terms.
Now, if you read this thinking “I wish I could worry about these things, but I’d need a home first”, then maybe we can interest you in our range of affordable, customisable, and loveable home plans here.