Natural Light and Basements

This is one of the most common concerns among people looking to undertake a basement conversion. With images of dark and damp cellars in their mind they struggle to envisage how the lighting will work. Well as you can see in our portfolio, this couldn’t be further from the truth. Using modern techniques and design elements we can make an underground space feel like any other room in the house – this is what makes us the leading basement design specialists in the country.

It’s not a choice

Having daylight and fresh air in basement space isn’t a luxury, it’s part of the building regulations for ventilation of habitable rooms. We have to incorporate opening windows in the same way we would for above ground work.

As a side effect of providing good ventilation to the space comes natural light. This is beneficial in two ways: 1. Natural light benefits the feel of any room in the house regardless of storey AND 2. From an environmental aspect you won’t need to light the basement space with artificial lighting during the day.


There are a number of techniques to increase the levels of natural light in basement spaces and the ones you can use are often determined by factors like the proposed use of the space, proximity to the boundary and plot size. These techniques can range from simple windows to an outside space, the installation of glass to help light travel throughout the space – it’s all about innovation.

Some of the projects we have undertaken have used techniques such as:

  • Partially sunken light wells and windows
  • Glazed doors and windows into an exposed courtyard
  • Sunpipes and pavement lights for those basements which extend beyond the footprint of the existing building
  • Glazed roof lights
  • The use of mirrors near natural light wells to extend the spread
  • Other reflective and polished surfaces can help to share the light throughout the space
  • Glazed floors help light travel between storeys

All glazing will need to meet stringent fire regulations to maintain compartmentation and alternative means of escape.

Getting natural light into a basement space can be challenging there are a number of techniques which can be utilised and combined to make your basement feel like any other room in the house.

On occasion we are faced with restrictions on light wells and therefore achieving natural light and ventilation becomes difficult; in this case we turn to alternatives such as mechanical ventilation & heat recovery (MVHR) which meets building regulations. However, our number one priority and preference is always natural light and ventilation to habitable spaces.

Get in Touch

If you are thinking about undertaking a basement project, extending your property or having an underground garage installed make sure you give us a call. We are the leading specialists in basement conversions and design. You can call us on 01628 826066 or email us. You can also follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn for all the latest updates.

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