Chase Away Winter Blues with these Home Remodeling Tips.

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increased natural lighting in home

Wisconsin’s long cold winter months can sometimes cause homeowners to get the winter blues and increase the symptoms of depression. But have no fear, help is near. Did you know that by making a few remodeling changes to your home you can help with these symptoms?

Since it is Mental Health Month, we thought to share tips for remodeling that will help. It is a scientific fact that increased natural lighting can help with feelings of Depression and Seasonal Affective Disorder. By making some of these changes in your home, you can improve your homes natural light, air flow and a general sense of well being.

Full-length windows

If your home has small or very few windows consider larger windows or more of them to allow light in. Consider full-length windows that brighten a room or a large bay window. You can also add fun items like a window seat or a book nook to create that cozy feel and give you a space to relax in the sun.

Add skylights

Another great way to increase lighting is to add skylights. Skylights can bring in lots of light and improve your homes energy efficiency by allowing the sun to help heat your home. A skylight is like a window in the roof, but its frame is designed and flashed to withstand the rigors of rainfall that a shelter receives. It allows for daylight to fill the home with both warmth and light which in turn reduces your energy costs, the amount is dependant on the amount of sun that your area gets. The more sun, the more warmth, and light you receive.

Screened in porches

Screened in porches are great, but, what about changing that porch to fully enclosed space with large paned windows. This would provide plenty of space to sit and relax in the sun while still staying warm and indoors.

Change the hardware

Changing the hardware, you are using for the lights can also help. If you light switches are attached to poorly lit ceiling lights, opt to change those items out for newer energy efficient lighting systems.

Light bulbs can make a huge difference in the amount of light in a home. User a higher wattage if you are using only 60-watt bulbs. Consider fluorescent or natural exposure bulbs to brighten a dull and darkened room.

Open concept 

Opening up walls for an open concept look is not only a way to improve lighting but airflow and energy efficiency as well. The light can now resonate throughout the home more naturally as well as heat can be distributed efficiently.

Doors

Increase the brightness in your home with French glass doors rather than a solid interior door. You can still have privacy, but the glass allows the illumination to flow.

Don’t forget the front or back doors of your home as well. Install a newer energy efficient door with triple paned glass for security yet the ability to allow light to flow in from the space. Or consider a glass storm door which you can use to let light in during the day while still being able to close and lock the more massive solid door at night or when you are away.

Don’t let the winter months bring you down. There are so many ways to brighten your home. The best way to handle any home remodeling project is by contacting a High Quality Contracting, Inc design expert to help you devise a custom plan that fits your home and your budget.

Window and Door Drafts Affect Energy Efficiency

 

Frigid weather in Wisconsin is hard enough without having a draft around a window or a door that causes heat to escape. Drafts mean more heating expenses, and that can put a chill on your finances if you’re not careful. Improving energy efficiency is a must. The best option to improve this situation is to replace leaking windows and doors with energy-efficient products. According to the Department of Energy, heating costs are the most significant expense for homeowners and can be greatly reduced with proper insulation and quality windows and doors.

Not only that, but, Remodeling Magazine’s Cost vs. Value Report for 2017 claims an average ROI for replacement windows and doors is between 70-80% upon resale. There are some factors to consider when choosing new windows or doors such as frame type, glazing type, color, and energy performance rating.

 

What is The Energy Performance Rating?

 

The Energy Performance Rating is a regulated by the National Fenestration Rating Council (NFRC) who tests, rates, certifies and labels windows and doors based on their performance rating. Ratings for such things as the U-Factor are labeled and help to inform purchasers how energy efficient a product is. To learn more about the Energy Performance Rating, you can visit https://energy.gov/energysaver/windows-doors-and-skylights/energy-performance-ratings-windows-doors-and-skylights.

 

 

What types of windows are energy efficient?

 

Most traditional styles of a window are now energy efficient including awning, hopper, sliding, fixed, double-hung, and casement.  Each type must be installed appropriately and air sealed to prevent leakage and to ensure energy efficiency. How the window is installed depends on several factors such as the type of window, the construction type of the house ( brick, stone, wood, etc.), the exterior cladding, and any weather-restrictive barrier.

 

High Quality Contracting Inc. works with several vendors including custom window options so we can replace any window type that you may need.

 

What about storm windows? Will that help my bottom line?

 

Not really, unless your window is broken, missing glass or has a sever leak problem, a storm window is not made to reduce energy loss. Seeing significant annual savings on your energy bill is highly unlikely.

 

What types of doors are energy efficient?

 

Just as with windows, doors also receive an Energy Efficiency Rating that can help you choose the right product. Styles also vary widely and can be matched with the exterior design of your home to create a fabulous focal point.

 

If you are looking for expert advice on what type of windows or doors would be best for your home, contact us today to schedule a consultation.