Why does your brain love high ceilings?


Filipa Namora, CEO

Filipa Namora, CEO

A few years ago, marketing studies were revealed in which they questioned whether ceiling height had any impact on the way a person thinks
One of the first things, which a real estate developer will point out to a potential home buyer, is quite possibly, when it exists, a high ceiling height. This is actually a major element in the market. Part of the interest in high ceilings is no doubt related to a general preference for space, but behavioral and brain evidence suggests there is more to it than that. Some research into our ancestry associates high ceilings with a psychological sense of freedom; in fact, a tall room activates our tendencies toward space exploration.

A few years ago, marketing studies were revealed in which they questioned whether ceiling height had any impact on the way a person thinks. Several participants were recruited for several different experiments, and they modified the study rooms so that some had three-meter ceilings and others had (false) two-and-a-half-meter ceilings. Chinese lanterns were also hung so that the participants would look up and, consciously or not, process the height of the ceiling.

Interestingly, it was found that working in a high ceiling environment put participants in a more free and abstract mindset than a low ceiling setting. The high ceilings were further shown to provide an experience that promotes freedom, creativity, and abstraction, while the lower ceilings stimulated more confined thinking.

With this, I decided to list the advantages of a high ceiling height, now in a room setting, where in an obvious way the immediate feeling is of space, air and light.

They are elegant, fascinating and luxurious – and they open up the environment.
In warmer climates, it is easier to cool houses with high ceilings – making it a more energy-efficient residence.
No one feels confined in a room with high ceilings.
They increase the resale value of a home.
They provide versatility for a variety of decorating ideas.
So, what is an appropriate ceiling height? Lower ceiling heights can limit the long-term value of your home should you decide to sell it. This is an important factor in the construction phase, it is a long-term commitment, unlike a kitchen countertop or choice of paint or carpet that are relatively easy to change or update. High ceilings also offer the opportunity to design windows that can provide beautiful views, increase your connection to the outdoors, and foster the entry of natural light.

So while you are in the process of developing your new home or remodel, don’t overlook this prominent feature that can transform your dwelling.