How to Let Natural Light Into Your Home
Natural light is one of the things we need to survive. It may not be as obvious as food, water or shelter, but sunlight makes us healthier, happier and more energized. You can even see the consequences of living without sunlight in a minor way through conditions such as Seasonal Affective Disorder – or SAD – which many people suffer through during the winter months. Getting natural light into your home is one of the most important things you can do to keep yourself feeling active, happy and relaxed in your own space. This can be easier said than done, but there are some brilliant and simple ways to maximize your sunlight without completely remodeling and installing wall-sized windows!
The first step is one we can easily forget – clean those windows and clean them often. It can be shocking how much light is prevented from entering our homes by the build-up of a thin layer of grime and dust over the glass. This is a particular problem for anyone who lives in a city or on a busy road, as those cars throw up far more fumes than we like to think about. Clean both the inside and outside of your windows regularly, and prepare to be shocked at how much extra light pours through once you’re finished.
Now, this may seem counter-intuitive, but double-glazing can be a great way to help you let in more light. Why? Well, if your house is growing cold, people often cope with this by closing thick curtains much earlier in the day to keep that heat inside. With properly insulated windows, you won’t need to do this, even in winter, so you can make the most of every last minute of sunlight. There have never been so many reasons to invest in replacement windows, and now there’s one more to add to the list.
Of course, even with sparkling windows letting in as much sun as possible, your house still might be designed with nooks and crannies that simply don’t get much sun no matter how clean your windows are. The best way to maximize light in these spaces is with the strategic placement of mirrors, which will reflect sunlight and have the added effect of making your rooms feel bigger and more spacious.
If you are struggling for extra light, it may be worth considering the arrangement of rooms in your house – and more specifically, at what points in the day you are spending the most time in each room. It’s no good having sunlight pouring through into your study during the hours when you’re most likely to be in the lounge, or vice-versa. This will require slightly more effort and furniture-moving – but hopefully no structural rebuilding – but if you can shift around the purpose of rooms to follow the sunlight, this is a genius way to maximize your access to natural light indoors. On a smaller scale, consider the placement of furniture within rooms – keeping your desk next to a window, for example – to make sure you’re getting all the Vitamin D your body needs.