5 Things To Consider When Designing Your Home Office

5 Things To Consider When Designing Your Home Office

home-office-569359_1920Having a home office area of some sort is a necessity for most of us. Since it’s going to be in your home, it should suit your own style as well as be functional.

You’ll be more inclined to spend time in a space that feels personalized and comfortable. Planning out what you need and what you have to work with before you start will make this process so much easier, not to mention more enjoyable. Let’s get started!

5 things to consider to when designing your home office

  • Who will be using it?
  • What type of work will be done in it?
  • How much time will be spent in it?
  • How much space do you need?
  • What area of your home will it be in?

Who will be using it?

So who is going to be working the most in this home office? A parent with small children? A student? A retiree earning a little extra money from home? Each of these people will have different needs.

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A parent of small children, for example, may only need a place to pay bills and keep track of papers (legal documents, medical records, schedules,). You wouldn’t need a lot of space and you wouldn’t spend a ton of time in it. But you’d probably still want to be in the line of sight of the kiddos. So a small cabinet in the kitchen or a table and file drawer in the living room may work just fine.

If you’re a student, at any age, you’re going to need a place to study and a computer. That could be as simple as a small desk in your room with a cup to keep pens and pencils in.

Or picture a retiree, someone who has their own house, the kids are grown and moved out. So here you are with extra space and some free time on your hands. You could dedicate a whole room to being your home office. Lucky You! I can see a desk, a filing cabinet, a printer shelf, whatever your little heart desires. Paint the walls a color that you like, pick up some coordinating accessories and you’re all set.

What type of work will be done in it?

Think about what you’re going to use it for. Running a full time business from home will likely take more space than just a spot corral the monthly bills would require. Do you need privacy for sensitive information? Do you need a quiet space to make conference calls? What type of work you want to do in your office will determine a lot

How much time will be spent in it?

If you’re just spending an hour or so a week to update the budget and plan the weekend, you probably don’t want to clockdevote a lot of real estate or capital into an “official place” to do that from. In fact, now that cell phones have evolved into mini hand held computers you can usually do those things on the fly from anywhere. Technology, ain’t it great?!

How much space do you need?

A lot of work from home jobs require nothing more than a computer and internet connection. But it really depends on your vocation of choice. As an independent bookkeeper, some clients prefer that I keep their files for them until the end of the year. Each of these needs its own secure space.

Think about the stuff you need in your office. How much equipment do you require? Will you be meeting with clients? Do you need a large filing cabinet? All of these things require square footage.

What area of your home will it be in?

What room you set up your home office in is completely up to you. For privacy or quiet, a corner of the bedroom might work well. Need to be able to keep an eye on the kiddos? Or if you just want a convenient spot to keep papers and pay bills, maybe the kitchen or living room is best. If you’re fortunate enough to have a whole room to dedicate as the office, this is gonna be fun!

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Once you’ve decided where it’s going to be located, let’s look at how much room you have. Square footage will help narrow down your choices. How much space do you really need?

Now that you have a pretty good idea of what you need, we can move on to actually designing your home office. Have fun with it!

In upcoming articles we’ll go over some of the specifics such as space saving designs or incorporating into your available space without sticking out like a sore thumb.

To Your Success!

Barb,

12 Comments on “5 Things To Consider When Designing Your Home Office

  1. Good advice you have here. I have just refurbished my own home office. My next idea is to buy a large LCD tv, hang it on the wall, and connect it to both computers and Playstation (whenever I have time for that).

    Now my wife uses the room a lot. It’s great to have a home office.

    Andreas

    1. Thank you Andreas. An updated space can be so inspiring. Love that you and your wife can share both enjoy your refurbished space. Good luck with the Playstation time too!

  2. Great idea about home office designing.

    I am also planing to give an end to my day job which is boring me quite a lot. I would like to own my own business in a home office. I think your ideas may be quite useful for my home office plans.

    It was a good content. Thank you for sharing your ideas and providing good information.

  3. Thanks Barb. I have been working from my laptop on the couch, in the living room for a ling while. I have not thought about building out my office space. I am now thinking that my home office should resemble the space that I work in away from home. I think that It would be nice to have multiple screens, that would duplicate what I do away from home. this would make it easier on me to get things done before I bring them in to the storehouse. I should always remember to re-read everything I do, at the home office, to check it for errors. ;0). You are making a real point with your writing. What we do at the home office should compliment and prepare us for what we do at the office away from home.

    1. That’s a great idea William! Having your office at home similar to the one you have away from home it will feel familiar and help you be more productive.

  4. I have a smaller three bedroom condo. I am hoping to move my youngest into his brothers room which will free a room for me to make into a home office. I desperately need a space of my own where I can go and not be inturrupted. I work from home so ot makes it hard to just work at the kitchen table each day. Can’t wait for the day when I can make that space a reality. I look forward to the next articles in this series!

    1. I hear you Heather! It is so hard working at the kitchen table and actually being productive. Good luck setting up your office.

      More articles in the works right now. 🙂

      Thank you,
      Barb

  5. Hi Barb,

    This is a great post with some good ideas. However, I would suggest that a home office should also include a place for a pet especially if it is one you intend on working 8 hours from. Many people can’t understand why their pets misbehave and act out when all they really want to do is spend time with us. Making sure your home office has perches for the cat and a big pillow for the dog will go a long way to making sure your animals don’t act up when you are done working.

    1. Thank you Jessica, that’s a great suggestion. In fact my dog Minnie has a bed right under my desk. If I’m in the office, she’s in there too. I love having her with me.

  6. Hello Barbk, many of us some times think that working from home does not require any serious preparation, after all, we are in our homes.
    But like you’ve rightly pointed out, planning is very important if we do care about maximizing productivity and saving time, and yes every thing will obviously depend on the needs and focus of the individual.

    All the best.

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