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  • Writer's pictureMelanie Evans

How to Add More Natural Light to Your Waterloo Region Home

We can't help but feel energised and inspired when natural light floods a room, so it's no surprise that a bright home is frequently at the top of a homebuyer's wish list. This is especially true after all the lockdowns of the past year or so: people are more aware than ever of how a lack of natural light can negatively affect their mood, productivity and overall enjoyment of their home.

But don't worry if your new dream home is dark: buyers and homeowners can rest assured that it's never too late to add natural light to a Waterloo Region home they love. Harnessing sunlight isn't out of reach, depending on your budget and time constraints.

Some remedies to a low light situation are quick fixes, while others may require a weekend to complete. Alternatively, you can go all out to enliven dark rooms and create a natural light flow throughout your new home by making some major changes.

We've divided our solar-powered solutions into three levels of effort. Try these tips, and let the (natural) light shine!

Simple Solutions:

Any furniture in front of your windows should be moved. This ensures that any light that does enter has enough space to move around. While it may be tempting to increase usable floor space by pushing furniture as close to walls as possible blocking windows - and thus natural light - will only serve to make a room look and feel darker and even smaller than it is.

Mirror, mirror, and more mirrors! Mirrors, strategically placed, can bounce light into dark corners. You don't have to go crazy and add so many mirrors the space looks like a 70s disco, the strategic use of just a few mirrors can make a big difference. For example, hanging a similar-sized mirror directly across from a window can create the illusion of two bright windows.

Look around each room quickly for any shadows. Anything that casts a large shadow should be moved to make the shadow less noticeable.

Choose furniture with delicate frames when decorating so that light can easily move around it. Glass, lucite, and reflective metal tables and decor can also help your space feel brighter.

Weekend Projects

Wash your windows on a regular basis. A film of dirt can collect on window panes, slightly filtering the sunlight, even when we can't see it. You won't believe how much of a difference this can make in terms of the amount and intensity of the natural light entering a space.

Install lighter window treatments to diffuse the uneven sunbeams and provide privacy without blocking out all the light. Sheer white curtains and window shades are both excellent choices. Solar shades are also a great way to add privacy while still letting in light: they block UV rays while preserving your view of the outdoors and all the light that comes with it.

Keep your decor light in color to allow natural light to shine through. This also applies to paint! Satin paint, for example, has a gleaming finish that helps bounce light around the room.

Any bushes or branches that are obstructing your windows should be pruned. This may even extend the amount of time that light can enter your home.

Large-Scale Projects:

Are you feeling brave? Remove or replace any unnecessary doors that close off rooms and block the flow of light with glass doors. Frosting door panes is a fantastic option for rooms that require a little privacy and more light, such as studies or dens. You can always widen doorways if necessary.

Remove any non-weight bearing walls between common areas to allow more light into your home.

If you decide to install skylights or tubular daylight devices, the sky is the limit! This option, with some careful planning, can bring natural light into even the most unusual spaces. Skylights are an excellent choice for dark bathrooms and bedrooms because they provide complete privacy as well as a lovely glow.

Natural light can improve your mood, productivity, energy, and overall health by flooding your space with it. It can also boost its appeal to potential buyers when it comes time to sell your Waterloo Region home. If you're looking to buy a home or have recently bought one that lacks natural light, you now know how easy it is to add it.

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