Mike McDougall

HOMEFINDER: Lighting the way for homeowners

The biggest trend in home lighting these days is LED, local expert says

One style of bulbs is leading the way in home lighting trends.

“The biggest trend in home lighting is LEDs. Everyone wants them,” says Mike McDougall, a certified lighting consultant with McLaren Lighting.

Existing styles of bulbs, from halogen to flourescent, are still in use, but bulbs using  LEDs are longer lasting and more efficient to use.

The last of the incandescent light bulbs, the 40- and 60-watt versions, joined the 100-watt bulb in being legislated out of existence as of Dec. 31.

LEDs are still the most expensive lighting product, but as McDougall points out, ”because the price has continued to come down, more people are using them.”

They’re being incorporated into all styles of fixtures, from desk lamps to chandeliers. “Victoria is a diverse community for lighting. It is very modern, but has a strong base for traditional and industrial styles of lighting.

“Craftsman style is also a favourite, but that is currently morphing into more of a West Coast contemporary look.”

One can always find the classic Tiffany-style lamps around town as well.

McDougall says Tiffany lamps make up a small portion of the lighting market, but haven’t gone away completely.

When asked what customers should keep in mind when purchasing lighting for their home, he suggests that “living space needs to be lit for the task at hand.”

Areas such as workspaces need brighter light and buyers should consider that when designing a residence or retro-fitting current lights.

He also suggest that multiple light switches and dimmers are becoming a thing of the past.

New one-stop key pads give you the ability to control all your lights on one panel and allow you to create preset lighting conditions for different times of your day.

“You can push one button and have all your lighting change,” he says.

McDougall recommends consulting experienced staff when purchasing lighting products.

“We’ve done the research and worked with the items in stock,” he says. “We want to be sure the homeowner has the right product for their needs.”

editor@goldstreamgazette.com

Q: Three quick and easy self-renovation ideas

1. New light switches and outlet covers

One of the most inexpensive ways to refresh a room is simply by replacing the covers on your lightswitches and power outlets. Choose an accent colour and texture to accentuate and add a flare to the room, or just new, crisp white ones to replace the dingy ones you’ve got on there right now.

2. Knobs and handles

Another quick, inexpensive and relatively easy improvement you can do yourself, don’t underestimate the look and feel of new doorknobs, drawer pulls and cupboard door hardware.

3. Blinds and curtains

Other than priming and painting a room top to bottom – a huge procedure, as you may know – the biggest way you can change the atmosphere of a room is by changing the window dressing. Even going from a one-inch vinyl blind to a two-inch one or adding side-curtains can do wonders.

GREATER VICTORIA MARKET UPDATE » MONTH TO DATE JAN. 6/15

» 16 / 294 — NET UNCONDITIONAL SALES/ TOTAL,  JAN. 2014

» 63 / 1,080 — NEW LISTINGS / TOTAL, JAN. 2014

» 2,918 / 3,870 — ACTIVE RESIDENTIAL LISTINGS / TOTAL, JAN. 2014

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