A Healthier Living Environment

There is always a concern that we should make the healthiest contribution to the world and use our resources in the most efficient way. While there is always a need to be efficient and respectful of the environment and the world around us this should never ignore or disrespect the needs of the occupants.

A healthier world needs to be balanced with the healthier inner world of the home or any building. If applied inappropriately a design that serves the needs of the outside environment can be unhealthy for the human world. Take the example of the sealed window units which are common in many new builds. Sealed windows trap heat and improve the energy efficiency of a building, but they also trap fumes and gases which can be exceptionally unhealthy for people.

Another issue in the modern (early 21st Century) world is the drive towards the low cost housing needed to answer the challenge of homes for the poor. The challenging issue here is that low costs result in shortcuts and the provision of inadequate lighting. Smaller window are cheaper to install and result in cost savings but create an environment that has poor lighting, with the potential harm to mental health over the long term.

Smaller windows, common in the drive for affordable homes, tend to reduce light into a home and this may contribute to low-level health issues, especially mental health in winter through seasonal effective disorder (SAD), with the reduced levels of light reaching people through smaller windows. The reduction in light levels, and the subconscious sense of being trapped behind sealed windows, could all be small contributors to long term health issues in any society. While not critical in themselves they can contribute to a build up of other problems of mental and physical health.

These are just a few of the concerns that a rush towards one solution can cause severe problems elsewhere. At Free-Homes the ideal is to solve these challenges for everyone and respect the human needs of all owners and occupants.