Extensions are a stalwart of home improvement, but you can’t just throw up a new room or convert a conservatory into modern living space without a plan. To make the work worthwhile in terms of both value and effort, it has to be well considered from all angles. One of the most important and, simultaneously, most overlooked considerations is light.
Light, and a lack of it, can completely transform a room. Natural light, in particular, is one of those factors that you might not appreciate until you don’t have it.
If you haven’t planned for the impact an extension can have on the flow of light in your home, you can easily end up missing the opportunity to create comfortable, wow-factor living spaces.
Extending from an external wall, where there was once a window or French doors, will more than likely make that existing room feel dark. This can be the case even if you go open-plan and the new external windows are the same size as the previous ones. That’s because there’s just more space to be lit.
Ideally, window square-footage should equal 25 percent of the total floor area, and you’ve just gone and added a whole load of extra floor space to your house.
On top of that, when you extend, you’re also changing the angle at which light would need to enter the space to effectively light the room. So you’ll need to factor that in when planning your changes.
Rooflights solve both problems, and they work for extensions with a flat or pitched roof. As they’re installed overhead, rooflights drastically improve the lighting of a space in daylight.
So rooflights are ideal for home extensions where you’re bolting new space onto the ground floor of an existing building.
This will be no revelation to the savvy home improvers out there, but not all rooflights are equal. Like natural light, the quality of your rooflights can also have a make-or-break effect on your newly extended space.
Go cheap and you’ll undermine your hard work with bulky, plastic frames, streaky glazing with poor U-values, and unwieldy opening mechanisms prone to failure.
Meanwhile, classic, top-of-the-range rooflights appear frameless, giving unobstructed views out and letting as much light in as possible. Thus they add an element of drama the likes of which architects can’t resist. So, it’s no surprise they’ve remained in vogue since the Victorian era.
We all know that an extension without a rooflight is something of a rookie error. But considering a rooflight as just a practical necessity is also a mistake.
Rooflights are an opportunity to make your space feel like a grand design, or even a Renaissance painting, highlighting and lowlighting architectural features and connecting the inside with the outside. They’re also what you’ll be looking out of, up to beautifully captured sky views, for the next 25 years.
If you’re considering an extension, you want to take your property to the next level. Don’t undermine your hard work by bodging the lighting! Add the wow-factor with a stunning rooflight.
|Peter Daniel is product innovation director at The Rooflight Company, which has been leading rooflight specialist since 1993, offering a range of high-quality products. Find out more about The Rooflight Company >|