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Tips for Building a Home Office

Whether you work from home full time, or just need a dedicated space to get some extra work or admin, home offices can be very convenient and give you the freedom to work creatively in your own home. One of the greatest benefits of having your own personal home office is that you can decorate it and set it up in any way you see fit, meaning you are more likely to create an environment which you thrive in.

Home offices can either be a blessing or a curse, all depending on how you set them up. A home office should feel like work out of home, meaning no distractions from your personal life. Creating the perfect home office can really have a huge effect on how much work, and what quality of work, you get completed. Below we have listed some great tips to help you set up on your own:

Planning Space

The first thing you need to ask yourself is how you are going to use the space? Think about what will be going into it, what you need the space for, what type of appliances will be required, and what type of work you will be doing?

Once you have got to grips with the purpose and contents of your home office, you can start to plan the space and draw up some floor plans.

Picking a Room

Picking a room may not seem like an important step, but the room you choose to convert can play a large part in how much work you will get done. When choosing an office space, try and consider the following points:

·         Is this room large enough for what I want?

·         Are the dimensions of the room fitting for the furniture I will need?

·         Is there sufficient lighting?

·         Is there access to enough plugs?

·         Can I access a phone line and internet from this room?

Once all of the above points are ticked off, the last thing you need to ask yourself is, “am I away from distractions?” A home office should literally be an office like any other. If the room is next door to your child’s music room, maybe that isn’t the best space to use. Equally, if the room already has things such as televisions, games consoles etc., it’s best to try and avoid it. You need as little distraction as possible.

Lighting

Good lighting is essential. Ideally you want as much natural light as possible. So, when you are selecting the room, try and choose one with a window. Lighting helps to open up the mind, and is known to motivate people and helping them focus. If there isn’t the option of an open room with natural light, try and implement as much eco-friendly electric lighting as possible.

Building the Main Structure

Offices don’t need to be particularly expensive to set up. All you really need is a desk, chair and some storage space for your documents. Places such as Ikea provide an array of home office furniture, such as desks, chairs, workspace storage, lighting, bins, and paper and media organisers, all of which won’t break the bank.

The great thing about purchasing furniture from this kind of place is that they offer flat packed versions. When you are investing in a workstation, I would recommend buying flat pack furniture, due to the ease of build, and quite frankly the value you get. Buying the essentials shouldn’t really set you back any more than £300. Here we have demonstrated how the furniture could work on a budget:

 

       Desk with integrated storage: £60                                                                                            Swivel chair: £55

                 Draw Unit: £60                                                                                                                          Peddle Bin: £14

 

Now there are obviously a lot more things that are needed in an office, such as computers, phones, stationary etc., but for the complete basics of a home office, you can see that it has cost no more than £189.

Equipment

So what else do I need in my office? It is important that you think carefully about what you are going to need, ensuring no money is wasted on unutilised appliances. There are a certain few things you will most definitely need to set up in your office, they are:

Wireless Hub - flexibility is key for optimising the amount of creative work being processed. By installing a wireless hub, you are not restricted to your desk, meaning you can stand up, sit down or even walk around whilst using your laptop.

Separate Phone Line - as we mentioned earlier, the less distractions the better. Therefore, installing your own phone line can greatly decrease the amount of distractions produced in your home, as well as not leaving your clients with a busy tone.

Computer/laptop - as silly as it sounds, if you do not already have one, you are going to need to invest in a computer to enable you to do your work. Having a separate computer to work on may be more costly, but it can help reduce the risk of lost work.

Now you have the basics of your home office set up, all that is required is a creative mind and an organised mind-set to get everything fully up and running.

Going Green

There is one thing left to make the office space perfect; making it eco-friendly. This doesn’t have to be a huge job. The main thing to look out for here is investing in sustainable materials, as well as energy saving electronics.

Your computer will undoubtedly use a lot of electricity, especially if you are using it for 8 hours a day. Try activating power saving features, and don’t leave it on all night, make sure it is fully switched off at the plug.

When buying bins, try and buy two separate ones; one for waste and one for recyclables. Offices tend to produce a lot of paper and plastic waste, so by recycling you are doing a little bit extra to help the environment.

When buying your main furniture, try looking into woods produced from sustainable forestry and products that have being recycled. As well as this, if you aren’t thinking of going to the nearest Ikea, look to source your materials locally. Not only does this help local businesses, but it also saves the resources used for transportation.