Have you ever heard the phrase biophilic design? It’s one of the most significant trends in the building industry. In short, biophilic design seeks to maximize human health and productivity by connecting us to natural light, air, materials and water. Study after study has proven the benefits of implementing biophilic design principles in schools and workplaces. For example, one major study demonstrated that people in biophilic environments took significantly less sick leave and students missed less school and scored higher on their tests than those in traditional environments. Another significant study found that hospital patients recovered faster and took less pain medication when they had exposure to natural light and views. Research also shows that office buildings with biophilic design elements sell for 7% more on average.
Can you get some of this good stuff into my home? Great question, because we all want better health and prosperity and more happiness never hurt anybody! So here are a few relatively easy and inexpensive ideas:
Improve your indoor air quality (removing micro-particles and viruses) by using an HVAC filter with a MERV rating of 13 or more (they go up to 20). Essentially, the higher rating the better. And if your HVAC system is compatible with HEPA filters that’s even better. At a minimum, don’t forget to open up your doors and windows to let the fresh air in, even from time to time during the “winter” months.
- House plants! Did you know that house plants freshen the air and remove toxins? They also have proven to reduce stress by creating a more calming and relaxing environment, which can lead to better sleep! They look super awesome too! We don’t have the greenest of thumbs so a few low maintenance plants we’ve had success with include zizi and rubber plants as well as Dracaena. Not sure where to start…here are some of our favorite low-maintenance options!
Open your blinds. Without having to go through the cost of adding windows and skylights, natural light can be increased by simply opening blinds, pulling back the drapes and trimming trees and shrubs to let in more natural light. And, it’ll help immensely for light and curb appeal! Also, during those tough “grey” months, we personally purchased natural light lamps to turn on from time to time…that and popping a little extra vitamin D seems to help a great deal.
Well, we hope you consider a few of these ideas to incorporate the proven benefits of biophilic design into your dream home. Until next time friends, be healthy and happy! You can find more incredibly helpful posts on our Team Skally Lifestyle and Real Estate Blog!