Five simple design tips that help minimize noise pollution in your home, while still creating a chic, cozy and comfortable retreat.
We want our home to be a safe haven. While we deal with constant chaos and commotion in our lives, our homes should be a place for rest and relaxation – a sanctuary of our own making. This is why it's essential for our interiors to be a peaceful retreat – somewhere to enjoy those sought-after calm, silent moments. Of course, this isn't always possible. Between the city commotions, rowdy neighbours and those curious creaks and squeaks inside the home, some of us might be struggling to find a little bit of peace and quiet.
Constant noise can be frustrating and harmful to our well-being as chronic exposure to sound can have long-term effects on your hearing. So when it comes to finding ways to reduce the noise in our immediate surroundings, the home is the prime place to start. With these simple design tips and tricks, we'll make sure your well-being comes first while keeping your place chic, cozy and comfortable!
Ways to reduce external noise
Let's say you've arrived home after a long day of work. You're exhausted and need a few moments to rest your eyes before you throw dinner on, start a load of laundry, and clean the bathtub. However, your neighbour's home and their television is at full volume as they vacuum their floor; a car alarm goes off in the distance, and kids are screaming outside. You can practically feel these noises creeping into your personal space. It's safe to say most of us have been in a similar situation and who wouldn't find this frustrating? While external noises are typical of modern city living, it can feel like an unbearable pressure without a quick fix.
The first thing to consider when it comes to noise reduction is finding ways to limit the sound that enters your interior. Also, sound waves travel by bouncing from one surface to another so the more hard and uncovered surfaces are present in your home, the more potential for these sounds to travel. With all this in mind, there are helpful design solutions you can implement in your home that will absorb sound waves and block sound from entering the space.
1. Covering surfaces to absorb noise
First, consider ways to cover hard surfaces or fill empty spaces. An area rug is an easy, sure-fire way to reduce noise levels. Consider a subtle-patterned, hand-woven cotton rug to add a lavish and charming touch. If you're interested in something slightly more daring and fun, consider using a fluffy shag rug or a classic Persian-style carpet with a floral pattern. For more eco-friendly options, Jute rugs are a hot ticket item. Carpet tiles are another alternative, and can be especially useful when trying to dampen noise coming from a downstairs neighbour.
2. Soundproofing and decor
When it comes to the structure of your home, wall, window and door insulation are key to reducing noise. But if you don't have the time or the patience to take on a full-blown insulation project, simple weather-stripping can help cut down on sound. As for decorative soundproofing, curtains and drapes can not only soften a room's look, but can also have a huge impact on noise reduction, especially if you know your windows are thin. Choose a style that suits your decor taste, such as a venetian blind or soft, classic curtain; or go for a luxe look with velvet or heavy velour drapes.
Aside from the floors and windows, think of creative ways to incorporate beautiful fabrics into the rest of your home. Consider a printed, decorative rug hung on the wall, or maybe you have a few choice canvas paintings that are just waiting to be hung!
3. Combining comfort and practicality
Furniture also works as a natural insulator, and strategically placing chairs and couches can definitely soften the effects of outdoor noise. Consider building a tall bookshelf for the wall you share with your neighbour as books, clothing, towels, linens and various other dense materials make for excellent sound transfers. Opt for a fully-stuffed sofa over a formal or plain model, as anything overstuffed and cushy will absorb that incoming noise.
Ways to reduce internal noise
As mentioned, finding peace and quiet comes from within too. There are various culprits around the home that add to the ambient noise level and could be putting you in quite the mood.
4. Dividing up your space
If you're living in an open space, it's helpful to divide it into smaller alcoves. Hang curtains that stretch across the room or strategically place large plants to create separate areas. Not only do plants deflect and refract noise, they clean the air while doing so – it's a win-win for your wellbeing.
5. Aiming for energy-efficiency
Our home appliances certainly play a part in the noise pollution, as well, so try considering energy-efficient appliances as they tend to run much quieter. Not only does installing an environmentally-friendly item into your home mean less noise, but it'll also have an impact on your peace of mind as you're actively contributing to helping the planet. Consider a new high-efficiency washer and dryer, refrigerator or dishwasher or other ways to reduce energy consumption.
Renovations that improve your home's soundproofing
In some cases, the home's structure is to blame for faulty soundproofing and the previous advice may not suffice. Thankfully, there are renovation options and a variety of materials that can have a major impact. RenoQuotes.com is an online platform which helps connect consumers with certified contractors, helping speed up projects and ensuring that things run smoothly.