Having an abundance of natural sunlight is one of the top priorities for most people when they are designing a custom home. There are a ton of benefits when it comes to incorporating natural light in your home, and it’s one of the first things people notice when they walk into a house for the first time. Those of us who live in Ottawa know the importance of getting as much sun as possible while it’s here during the warmer months, and we do whatever we can to soak up as many rays as possible during the brutal winters.
Natural Sunlight, Your Health, And Your Home
Spending the day soaking up the sun makes us feel better, but it’s also vital to our overall health. Sunlight has a proven and direct impact on your physical and mental health in a number of ways, which is why it’s so important to live in a home with lots of natural sunlight. Natural light also benefits your home in ways you may not have considered before.
Benefits To Your Health
Vitamin D or “the sunshine vitamin” is extremely important to your overall health. Our primary source of this vital nutrient is the sun. When the sun’s rays come in contact with our skin, it stimulates our body’s natural production of vitamin D. Having a vitamin D deficiency can be detrimental to your health and has been linked to some serious health conditions like breast cancer, depression, weight gain, and heart disease. The good news is you can boost your vitamin D levels whether you are exposed to sunlight outdoors or indoors.
Exposure to natural light has a direct effect on the amount of serotonin your body produces as well. Serotonin is a mood-boosting chemical that is responsible for communicating feelings of happiness to your brain. This is why many people suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder, or SAD, during the winter months. The shorter days and inclement weather reduce the amount of natural light we are exposed to, which in turn diminishes our serotonin levels. It’s important to have an abundance of natural light in your home so that even if it’s cold outside you can still get direct exposure to the sun and keep your mood up all winter long.
Benefits To Your Home
Having plenty of natural sunlight in your home can save you a lot of money on your monthly bills. Sunlight will naturally heat your home, which is a huge benefit to homeowners during the long Canadian winters. The natural heat of the sun will reduce the amount of money you have to spend on heating your home and has the added benefit of keeping the mileage on your furnace down. Although this can be seen as a negative during the summer months, a simple semi-opaque window covering can reduce the amount of heat you let in while still allowing you to enjoy the health benefits of the sunlight.
If the inside of your home receives a lot of natural light, you’ll never be left in the dark. Increasing the amount of sunlight that can enter your home means you can avoid turning on the lights until the sun starts to set. If you only have to turn the lights on at night, when electricity costs much less, you can significantly lower your monthly bills.
How To Maximize The Natural Sunlight In Your Home
There are multiple ways you can increase the natural sunlight in your home through structural features, interior design, and even landscaping. If you’re working with a builder to design your own custom home, be sure to consider these options to incorporate natural light into the design.
You can’t always choose which way your plot faces but you can choose which way your windows face. South-facing windows are considered to be the best choice because they allow warm natural sunlight to enter your home during the winter months and keep the majority of it out during the summer. East-and-west-facing windows are great for receiving year-round daylight but should be used according to your needs in each room. For example, you may not want to use east-facing windows in your bedroom because you’ll get a lot of intense sunlight in the mornings.
Sunrooms are a great way to bring outdoor living inside, and they allow you to get all the great benefits of natural sunlight indoors. If you’re sick of being swarmed by mosquitoes and wasps every time you try to enjoy your backyard, consider adding a sunroom to your custom home design. They’re also a great way to extend your summer fun into the fall when it starts to get a bit too cool to sit outdoors, but you still want to enjoy the sunshine.
You can design your home to be functional without sacrificing style. Mirrors are a great way to extend the reach of the natural sunlight your windows let in throughout the rest of your home. Painting your walls light colors will also naturally brighten up your living space because lighter colors will refract more sunlight than darker colors.
When evaluating how much natural sunlight can enter your home it’s important to consider the impact of the outside of your house. Choosing trees that lose their leaves in the winter is a great way to increase the natural light in your home during the frigid winters. The dense canopy of the trees can keep the sun from heating your home too much in the summer if placed correctly. Then in the winter when the trees lose their leaves it will allow lots of natural light to warm your home and your spirits.
When you partner with Omega to build your custom home we work with you to ensure every detail, including your natural light intake, is designed with your unique needs in mind. Contact us to start the process of building your custom home, and to learn more about how you can incorporate natural sunlight into your dream home design.
We don’t just build you a house, we build you a home. We assemble the top architects, designers, and trades personnel to work in conjunction with our experienced and licensed staff, in order to make your dream home a reality. As a Tarion Custom Home Design-Builder, we feel it is our responsibility to be adaptable to each client’s individual needs. There’s no job we can’t handle and we will do whatever it takes to meet your requests with high-quality results. Our architects and designers are always looking for new and exciting challenges, so the only limit is your imagination.