Skylights are very common in tiny house lofts, and it's not hard to see why. For a tiny house with a traditional gable roof, there isn't really anywhere else in the loft to put windows. Just having a single window in the gable end probably doesn't let in quite enough light.
There are other reasons to want a skylight:
- You can lie in bed and look up at the stars
- It is good to have ventilation at the very top of the building
- If it opens fully, it can provide a means of fire escape
And of course, there are downsides too:
- Every roof penetration introduces a risk of leaking
- What if you left it open and it rained?
- It can be cold being so close to a window on a cold night in winter
- Because you can't shade it, the solar gain can make the loft very hot in summer
For me personally, I've never lived anywhere with a skylight. The people I knew who had skylights always seemed to have issues with leaks, although I do know people who have had Velux roof windows without any problems.
Although I like the idea of being able to see stars, my instinctive feeling is that not having a solid roof above me would not give me the cosy protective feeling that I want to have when I'm in bed. In fact, having a glass window beside me would have the same effect. I'd like to be able to sit up and look out the window easily, but I'd like to feel that nobody can see me when I'm lying down in the loft.
My ideal loft design would have a solid roof above and solid walls beside me, with a layer of glass in between to let in the morning light. This design from hOMe, is one of the best I've seen for this: no glass above, or directly beside at eye level, but still plenty of light in the loft.