It may not seem as important as other aspects of building design, but bad lighting can seriously affect the mood and functionality of your spaces, not to mention your health. What’s more, outdated lighting will also crank up your power bill. If you haven't looked at your lighting lately, consider these bright ideas:
If you think green light bulbs are something best left at the disco, think again! Energy-efficient light bulbs are fast becoming a must-have solution for reducing power bills in the home.
Thanks to the move towards larger homes over recent years, lighting now consumes up to 15% of the average household electricity budget. Luckily, costs in this area can be reduced by over 50% simply by swapping old incandescent lightbulbs for contemporary options like LED, fluorescent or solar lighting alternatives.
LED light bulbs, for example, are now available in a wide range of shapes and sizes to suit all fittings. Not only do they use less electricity to light up a room, they also emit far less heat, making a positive contribution to your cooling costs over summer, too.
Ceiling lights, such as fluorescent tubes or down lights, are standard in most Australian homes. They’re handy in spaces like the kitchen, where you need a clear, bright light to work, but they’re far from your only lighting option.
The latest design concepts in desk or standing lamps can do wonders for the look and feel of your home. In an open plan area, intimate lighting can create distinct spaces – like a reading nook or media zone. If you have a smaller home, lamps can radiate a subtler light, avoiding the ‘overkill’ of harsh overhead lighting.
When it comes to saving money, switching on a lamp when you need it is far more economical than flooding a room with ceiling lighting.
Two great ideas are better than one
Another way to boost the efficiency and affordability of lighting in the home is the many ‘2 for 1’ products now available. Short on space in the kitchen? Look for a rangehood that incorporates good, clear lighting when it’s in use and save on additional lamps or ceiling lights.
Take a walk around your home and consider where else you could benefit from doubling up. How about ceiling fans with inbuilt lights for a stylish look in bedrooms? Or cupboards and vanities that light up only when you open the doors for another efficient lighting solution?
Better vision, better health
With our increasing reliance on technology for everything from work to weekend relaxation, it's never been more important to pay attention to the lighting in your home office or media room. Poor lighting in these areas can lead to eye strain and headaches, not to mention spinal problems if you’re forced to bend and twist to get a better view.
Rather than relying on ceiling lights alone, consider what home décor experts are calling ‘task lighting’. This means including a range of lighting options in your workspace, like well-positioned desk lamps for online time, adjustable standing lamps for watching TV and brighter lights for reading a book.
Save money on health costs as well as energy expenditure by improving your lighting!
Move with the times
Lighting can also save you money simply by bringing a room to life with ease. Stylish lamps and light shades can change the whole look and feel of a room in line with seasons and trends, without the high price tag of a major redecorating project.
Go vintage with art deco inspired light fittings, or a little bit country with quaint floral lampshades. Wood trims and metallic finishes are right on trend, combining a modern industrial vibe with the warmth you want in your home.
Save money while you improve the look, feel and efficiency of your home with contemporary lighting solutions.