Did you move into a new apartment and can’t seem to find lights in the living room? Don’t be bothered. This is more common than you’ll imagine. So, why don’t apartments have lights in the living room?
Your living room doesn’t have lights because the NFPA 70 doesn’t make it compulsory. This could be a blessing as it allows for flexibility with lighting and saves cost on construction. But having to install your lights could lead to wasted floor area, and you might have uneven light distribution.
Regardless, you have many options if you have to fix the lighting in your living room. Plug-in lamps, cable lamps, flameless candles, and decorative candles are a few options to improve the room’s overall lighting. Here, we discuss why your apartment living room doesn’t have lights and how to light up the space.
Rules Guiding Apartment Lighting
Lighting is one of the things you should look out for when checking out an apartment. It’s great for your comfort and convenience. Good lighting also helps improve mood and productivity. But when it comes to the living room, the lighting requirements are very flexible. The National Electrical Code or NFPA 70 doesn’t make it compulsory to install ceiling light fixtures in the living room and dining room. So, any apartment with permanent light fixtures in the living room only does so at the designer’s discretion. Other rooms don’t require permanent light fixtures in the bedrooms.
However, there are places in the house that must have lighting fixtures. They include the laundry rooms, kitchen, foyers and corridors, and bathrooms. These places need their ceiling light fixtures because it’s difficult to add a plug-lamp to those rooms. But the other rooms in the house, such as living rooms and bedrooms, can easily have plug-in lamps that fit perfectly with the setting and don’t take too much space.
Pros Of Not Having Lights in Your Living Room
If you’re someone who likes lighting in your house, not having lights in your living room might come off as unlikeable, but there are many benefits to this. That include:
1. Cost Saving
Ceiling lights for your living rooms, bedrooms, and dining rooms might not seem like much, but when you calculate the cost and multiply it by a large number of units that the contractor has to build, you start seeing how high the number can get. Most times, designers have to determine what’s important for a house and when it comes to priority as to what should be installed in a house, ceiling lights rank very low. You want many more important things in your homes, such as energy-efficient HVAC systems, better filtration and ventilation systems, security systems, quality kitchen appliances, etc. Lighting for rooms where you can easily plug in a lamp comes very low on that list, and unless you’re looking to spend over the budget on the house, you can as well do without it.
Not having permanent ceiling lights in your living could be a blessing if you want to control the lighting of that space. That means you can easily install the lightings you prefer in your desired location. Choose the color, location, and look for your plug-in lamps and effectively customize your space to match your desires with lighting.
Cons Of Not Having Lights in Your Living Room
There are also disadvantages to not having fixed lights in your living room. They include:
1. Uneven Light Distribution
When you don’t have living room lights and rely on plug-in lamps, you need to make extra effort to place the lights to compliment your space and light every part of the room. This means some headaches trying to think of where to place what. You don’t want low lamps shining directly into your eyes or creating shadows against tall furniture.
2. Wasted Floor Area
The plug-in lamps will take up more space in your living room, which means you can’t maximize your floor area. This can be worse if you need to have multiple lamps in the room, and it could lead to an awkward furniture layout as you try to get the best positions for the lamps.
How To Add Lighting to A Living Room Without Permanent Lights
If your living room doesn’t have permanent ceiling lights, there are several ways to add lights to the room. These include:
1. Buy Plug-in Lamps
Lamps connected to wall outlets are the best way to go in this case. They could be ceiling or floor lamps. According to the law, most rooms should have at least one wall switch to control lighting. So, you have to connect your lamps to that wall outlet and place them in the desired location. You can easily find the lighting outlet in your room. The electrician will often label it, but even if they don’t, a simple plug-in and flipping the wall switch will reveal which outlets serve the purpose.
You can connect multiple lamps using an extension cord if you have only one lighting outlet. But you should be careful not to overload an outlet as this could cause damage or, even worse, fire. You should always opt for low-energy LED bulbs and limit the number of lamps you connect to an outlet. You likely don’t need that many lamps after all.
2. Cable Lamps
You can also install cable lamps on the ceiling. All you need to do is attach hooks that you’ll hang these lamps on, and you can then plug the lamp into an outlet. Hanging a lamp could offer the room more uniform lighting and take less space than floor or table lamps.
3. Flameless Candles
Another option is to use flameless candles. These electrical devices work like traditional candles, except you have to plug or charge them. They’re also much safer and don’t cost much. If you’re looking to brighten a room, a flameless candle might not be the way. But they’re good for the ambiance and can give your room a great lighting effect.
4. Use Mirrors
Compliment your room lights by installing decorative mirrors that make the room appear much brighter. Direct the lamps towards the mirror, so the light bounces off it and spreads to other parts of the room. You can also add mirrors across your windows to reflect the natural light. Opt for mirrors fitted into the wall.
Living rooms with no lights aren’t the end of the world; they’re even more common than you imagine and allow you to customize the lighting options as you deem fit.