All of us need a space where we can get work done, even in the home. If you use your home office as a designated space for running a business, or just as a place where you can sit quietly and go through your bills or organize your schedule, you deserve more than a hole in the wall. We have some tips for everyone who has a space they like to work from in their home that can use a little sprucing up.
Pick a Great Location
As they say, “Location, location, location!” It’s important in selecting a place to establish a business, and it’s also paramount when setting up a home office. You’re going to spend a lot of time in this space, so you need to consider where to put it. Some homes might not offer much variety in your choosing, but if you have options, there are a few points you need to consider. First, don’t limit your space. You will be spending time in this room, and when it comes to work time is money—so choose your area wisely.
Second, you need to think about traffic flow in your home and how well you handle distractions. If your kids are watching television in the same room you are trying to get work done; it’s probably not ideal. Shoot for privacy and also consider locating near your main entrance. You don’t want clients who might come over to take a tour of your home.
Don’t Get Stuck Staring at a Wall
See if you can locate your home office in an area with a view. A window will work well for this purpose and consider putting a bird feeder outside your window. You might have the occasional distraction when something comes calling for a snack, but it will keep you from going mad with boredom staring at a blank wall.
Install Adequate Lighting
Lighting is important in a business. Imagine working in a cubicle with poor lighting. It will drive you crazy and will suck at your productivity. You don’t want that in your home. Good lighting makes an office feel comfortable and will help you get into work mode. A good desk lamp helps for looking at paperwork close-up, but don’t skimp on your overhead lighting either.
Find the Perfect Desk and Chair
They cost money, but you need to invest in a good chair. Poorly-made chairs are a death sentence to productivity in any setting. You aren’t going to get a lot of work done if you are uncomfortable or in pain so invest in a nice-looking, ergonomically-correct, chair. It will be worth it in the long run.
Don’t Forget to Decorate
Additionally, you don’t want to just throw a desk, good chair, and some ample lighting into a room with a small window; make sure you add those homey touches that say—this is my office!
Adding photos of family and friends doesn’t hurt, and neither does the occasional picture on the wall. Take pride in how your place of work, even though it’s at home.
Add a Touch of Color
Consider painting your walls, but avoid dull colors. Most homes come with a standard white, which is fine, but not something you have to settle on. Don’t go for a traditional office beige either—you need a color that gets your work motor humming! Studies show that bright or pastel colors will improve your energy and get you going.
Look for Options to Maximize Space
Space may be limited, so you need to use it efficiently. Instead of putting a bookshelf in the corner, consider hanging floating shelves on the walls. This will get papers and other office items off the desk and out of the way, but will also make use of space you wouldn’t otherwise be using. Make sure the important paperwork is readily accessible by using hanging file folders you can store within your desk.
Install a Door and Stay Concentrated
Don’t have doors for your office? Get some! If you converted an old dining room or other space you don’t otherwise use any longer, adding doors is an investment in privacy every home office should make. Doors allow for that added layer of privacy when you need to concentrate on a phone call or important project while your family is home.
Clean Up the Clutter
This may seem like a minor thing, but you need to also hide the cords! Nobody likes to look at a jumble of cables connecting all of your electronics devices. Invest in a wire organizer that’s attached to the desk, so the cords are lifted off the floor and out of the way.
Consider these tips when setting up an office in your home. Some of them may seem like minor changes, but they will go a long way in helping your productivity. An office that reflects the design and comfort of the rest of your home is a place you’ll want to burn the midnight oil and get things done!