how to install lighting in a room with no overhead lights

How to Light a Living Room with No Overhead Lighting

How to Light a Living Room with No Overhead Lighting

How to Light a Living Room with No Overhead Lighting

The living room is one of the areas in your home where you spend the most time. It is also where you host your visitors and spend some quality family time.

For this reason, your living room should look beautiful.

There’s nothing that illuminates beauty better than lights. You have nothing to worry about if your living room does not have overhead lighting.

In this article, you’ll get useful tips on how to light a living room with no overhead lighting.


Why Do Apartments Not Have Ceiling Lights?

If you live in a rented apartment, you may be breaking your lease agreement by installing your own overhead lighting fixtures. This could cause you to forfeit your security deposit or, even worse, risk electrical hazards. 

Your best bet is to bypass overhead fixtures and light up the room without them.

Another reason is cost. Overhead lighting fixtures are pretty expensive when compared to other lighting options.



How to Install Lighting in a Room with No Overhead Lights

Below are some workable lighting alternatives. 

1. Use Smart Bulbs

How to Light a Living Room with No Overhead Lighting

Having plug-in smart bulbs installed on the walls is a great way to light up your space. This way, you won’t miss the overhead lighting installations.

There are various types of smart bulbs, most of which are LED bulbs that can be brightened or dimmed according to your needs.

They will fit very well on both sides of your T.V or above the couch.  


2. Use Plug-in Wall Lamps

Wall sconces will give your living room a vintage castle-like look. The best part is that they are relatively cheap and easy to install.

Oh, there would also be no need for any electrical wiring. All you have to do is to install and plug them in and your living room will be lit up.

There are so many varieties of plug-in wall sconces on the market. There are simple looking models as well as models that will give your living room an expensive look.  

You can install them on the walls right above your sofa or have two units placed at each side of your T.V, depending on the overall style of your living room.


3. Take Advantage of Reflective Accessories

You can also improve the lighting of your living room by adding certain types of reflective accessories. Such accessories include brightly colored stones, glass bowls, hanging crystals, glass vases, and seashells.

These kinds of decorations help to bounce light around and complement the sun rays from your windows as well as the light from the lamps in your living room.


4. Use Decorative Mirrors to Magnify Light

How to Light a Living Room with No Overhead Lighting

If the light from your floor lamps isn’t enough to satisfy your lighting needs, then you can boost illumination using decorative mirrors.

All you have to do is to point the lamps towards the direction of your mirrors and there will be more light rays shone throughout your living room.

Another great tip is to install one or more mirrors across your windows. Doing this will mimic the look of the windows and equally bounce natural sunlight around the room.

If you decide to go berserk with this idea, you can install as many mirrors around your living room as you see fit. This will surely light up your space. A word of caution, though, this tip is best suited for people who live alone or with grown-ups. It may not be the best option if you have kids around because they may run into the mirrors as they play around.

Opt for mirrors that can be screwed into the walls instead of standing mirrors to reduce the risk of broken mirrors.


5. Flameless Candles

Take note of the word “flameless”. Traditional candles are not recommended since they can cause a fire outbreak. Flameless candles, on the other hand, are safe, beautiful, and affordable.

They are electrical devices that look pretty much like traditional candles, only that they operate using a battery or an electric outlet.

Placing electrical candles around the fireplace or by the sides of your T.V will produce a lovely lighting effect around your living room.

These are not the brightest lighting options but a good choice if you love a dim ambiance.


6. Light Up with Floor Lamps

Floor lamps are a great lighting option. You can opt for the large arc floor lamps or go for the smaller options.

They can be placed over your accent chairs to give your living room a cozy classy look.

They are affordable and an excellent budget-friendly option.


7. Hang Cable Lamps

By hanging cable lamps, you won’t have to interfere with any wiring at all. All you need to do is to install some hooks on the ceiling for the lamps and you’re done.


8. Give Access to Natural Light

How to Light a Living Room with No Overhead Lighting

This should be a no-brainer, as natural sunlight is the first-ever means of lighting known to man. And it’s free.

Your windows are the means of having natural lighting in your living room.

But what if the sun rays are too harsh on certain days?

The solution is to buy curtains made of light materials that allow enough light to come in but limit its harsh effects.  

On days when the sun isn’t blazing hot, you can slide the curtains and let the rays in. An extra tip is to make sure your windows are always spotless. Dusty windows will limit the amount of natural light coming in.

The good thing about using your windows to draw in light is that you’ll be drawing in some fresh air as well.


9.  Consider Table Lamps

How to Light a Living Room with No Overhead Lighting

Go for table lamps if you don’t fancy floor lamps. This works best for those who love to read.

You can place the table lamps on both sides of each couch and your room will be lit up.

Consider buying battery-powered models if you don’t have enough power outlets in your living room.

They come in various sizes and wattage, so buy according to the size of your living room.


Floor Lamps Vs Overhead Lighting for Your Living Room

When buying a home or renting an apartment, one of the most important things you have to consider is the lighting. Having to choose between floor lamps and overhead lighting can be a bit of a whirlwind as both have their advantages and disadvantages.

Here’s a list of the pros and cons of floor lamps and overhead lighting.


Pros of Floor Lamps

Affordability: Floor lamps are cheaper than overhead lighting fixtures. They’re your best bet if you’re on a tight budget.

Movability: Floor lamps can be moved from one room to another. You can also take them with you when you move out of an apartment.

Choice: When buying floor lamps, you can go for the ones that suit your apartment design. With overhead lights, you have to stick with the ones already installed in the apartment you want to rent because changing them would be very expensive.


Cons of Floor Lamps

The main issue with floor lamps against overhead lights is that the former is not as bright as the latter.

Where to place them is also an issue. You will also require many power outlets to plug in the number of lamps you need to properly light up your living room.


Pros of Overhead Lighting

Overhead lights are very bright and they spread light evenly around the room. They also do not require power sockets to work, just switches.

Also, you don’t have to worry about ground space since they are fixed on the ceiling. With floor lamps, creating the space to place them is an extra task.


Cons of Overhead Lighting

The major reason why people shun overhead lighting is the cost. You need a larger budget to have overhead lighting fixtures installed.

The cost of having the fixtures installed is the main reason why floor lamps have become the more popular choice.



Not having any overhead lighting in your living room shouldn’t bother you since there are other available lighting solutions.

These alternatives are cheaper, easier to install, and can be taken with you whenever you move from your apartment.

The suggestions mentioned above do not require you to tamper with the building’s wiring, just buy your preferred lighting accessory and plug into a socket or place on a stand.

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