The days are getting shorter, and we’ll be feeling the effects of less and less sunlight before we notice it’s gone. The lack of natural light can affect our moods, our sleep, and even our immune systems. When we let the sunshine in, though, it prompts our brains to produce more serotonin and endorphins—the “happy” hormones. So, maximize what we’ve got left with these ways to increase the natural light in your home.
Clean Your Windows
Even if you remember to clean your windows regularly, you’re probably not getting the outsides washed. Grab the squeegee the next time it’s nice out and wipe away summer grime. While you’re at it, make sure there’s nothing blocking the window. Outside, trim back any foliage that’s between the window and the sun. Inside, move any furniture that’s in the way.
Rethink Your Window Treatments
Not all rooms need heavy window treatments. You may want to block out all the lights in the bedrooms, but elsewhere in the house, try sheer materials with varying levels of light filtration. You can layer the lightest blinds and curtains to let the sun in and still maintain your privacy.
Add Shiny Things
Mirrors reflect the light that reaches it; if you’re any good at geometry (or playing pool), you can strategically angle a mirror to bounce the light into darker corners. Shiny objects can have a similar effect, as well as glass back-splashes in the kitchen.
Paint Window Frames White
This step will amplify the reflection of natural light. If you’re feeling ambitious, you’ll find that painting the underside of the eaves outside your windows can make a big difference.
Use Lighter Paint on Walls
Lighter shades reflect light, while darker colors absorb it. If you think that white is too stark, a light gray shade is a subtle way to lighten up a room. Increase the gloss finish by one level, and the paint will even display some of the same properties as a mirror.
Homebuyers always put a priority on natural light when they’re house-hunting, so don’t settle for dreary darkness in yours. When you increase the natural light in your home, rooms look brighter, bigger, and more open. Sunlight even helps warm the house and brings down your heating bills. And those are savings that you might even use one day for a skylight.