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Archives > March 2015

Natural Lighting   

Buyers are demanding more natural lighting in their homes. As a society, we are overwhelmed with florescent lighting at work and now with the removal of incandescent light bulbs, it is even more important. Many people do not realize the hazards of CFL’s to their health and wellbeing, but I will save that for another blog!

Natural Lighting and Exposure

One of the top things buyers look for is natural lighting. Dreary homes are not appealing. Lighting comes in two forms, artificial and natural. Natural lighting is most affected by the direction a home faces.  Homes that face South/North are less sought after than those that face East/West. This is because north facing homes are in grayness all day, as they never gets sun exposure. Add to this cold dark Canadian winters and you have a dreary home by default.

East/West exposures benefit from sunrises and sunsets and will have some yard in the sunshine depending on the lay of the land.  It often allows for great breakfasts in a sunny kitchen!

While you cannot turn your home around, there are things you can do to add natural lighting to your home. First remove all overgrown shrubbery from blocking your windows.

You can also ensure better lighting by keeping the windows and screens free of dirt and cobwebs. Regularly washing windows goes a long way. Awnings are also a major offender in blocking light and unless you are actually trying to do that, then take them down.


Interior Tips

The interiors of darker rooms can be lightened up as well. To start, remove heavy furniture and drapes from windows and install lighter weight sheers.  Adding Solar tubes is a great option also and can be an asset when you go to sell, as long as it is professionally installed. Staircases and north facing rooms benefit from this feature.

Check out this page for details:

Solar tubes are an aluminum tube shaped product that is installed with a small hole in your roof. The tube is bent through your rafters, bouncing natural light in to the room you choose via a small flat round window that is installed in your ceiling. It creates a mini skylight at an affordable price. Solar tubes also eliminate the need for lighting during the day, especially in closets and hallways, which saves on electricity bills as well.

Adding value through some small investments can really boost your marketability when it’s time to sell. And if you plan ahead you can enjoy these features for a while too!

For information on staging and pre- renovation consultations prior to Listing your home, or for a Free Market Evaluation on your home call Jill Turgeon at 780-218-7444

Artificial Lighting when Selling Your Home

When preparing your home for sale, the lighting subject cannot be overlooked. The importance of natural lighting was in an another blog, so now we are taking it indoors.

To fully appreciate this let me take you on a short showing through a listing that is badly lit.

First, your Agent has trouble finding the key box and opening it because the exterior lights aren’t on or burnt out. After a few frustrating minutes access is finally gained and the showing begins. Upon entering the home for your appointment, you discover total blackness. It’s only 6 pm but it is January in Edmonton, so the home is pretty dark. Your agent fumbles around looking for light switches and you try to adjust your eyes to take in the sights of what might be your next “home”.

If all lighting is functional and the bulbs aren’t burnt out or too low of wattage then you can assess the property,  however that is usually not the case and you are left wondering what this home is all about.

Moving onto the bathroom, the seller decided to save money and only has one bulb in there so it’s hard to see if there is water damage or repairs needed. The bedroom lighting is a small flush mount light with one bulb in it and the lamps are not on. The laundry has blinding florescent light and after you recover your balance you find a dingy dark basement with no strings on lights, no way to find a switch and just more disappointment.

I could go on but I think we get the point. Today showings are less than optimal for so many reasons and lighting being a large player. One of the reasons (there are more!) that I am opposed to CFL bulbs is the time they take to “warm up” and fully turn on. It’s much too slow and by this time, your buyer has already moved to the next room and is waiting for that bulb to warm up.

When you are presenting a large scale investment for sale and have only minutes to woo a buyer, it is important to make sure that they are able to see what you  are selling. Daylight bulbs are a great investment for selling. I realize that this means a larger power bill temporarily; however it is a small price to pay.

Another option is to keep your lamps on light timers and leave them set for the darker hours of the day/ evening depending on the season you are in. Keep in mind that Sept to March they will need to be set from 4 pm to 10 pm.

Another way to use artificial lighting to your benefit is to add more. A typical living room has 2 lamps, but you can add a floor lamp in a corner behind a chair. Entry ways that can accommodate a table can also have a lamp in many cases. You can also add one in the bedroom corner as well as the existing table lamps on nightstands. Consider desk spaces, laundry rooms and even a dining room corner with a nice vase and branches and floor lamp, if space allows.

Upping the wattage will also help, and make sure that every space for a bulb in a fixture does actually house a bulb.

Light up corners with floor lamps or use up lighting. This involves using a small desk lamp behind a sofa chair in a dark corner, placing it on the floor and shining it upwards to light up the corner. This is especially helpful in basements where there are no windows or less natural light. Keep in mind that it has to be stable and not in danger of being a fire hazard.

Artificial lighting benefits best from neutral paint colors, as that of course makes the room look lighter.

I want to ensure that you have a great sale and that you are well prepared to sell quickly.

For questions on Preparing your home for Sale, contact:

Jill Turgeon

Professional Home Stager and Real Estate Agent

eXp Realty 780-218-7444