Many home offices turn into dark spaces that people don’t like working in. We have looked at a few ideas on how you can create an office that is highly functional and has a personal feel to the available space without you needing to spend a fortune.
Create a Plan
The key to keeping the cost low when setting up a home office is all in the pre-planning. Make a list of what you need the office for and how you will be using it. If you are a consultant and spend most of your day visiting clients, you may want to keep your office costs low. If all your day is spent in the office, you need it to be functional and comfortable for you to produce your best work. Start your list with what is essential in your office and put the less important items at the bottom. Have a look at where you plan to have your office so you can gauge the lighting and power sockets you will need throughout your working day.
Use Old Furniture
The only piece of furniture you will want to spend money on is your office chair. Your chair should be height adjustable and comfortable to prevent getting backaches or related pains from sitting. Desks and storage can be found in second-hand shops, or if you are lucky, you may have old furniture in your house that you can repurpose. Old dressers are great for storage as most have shelving already fitted, and you can use an old kitchen table for your desk if the height is suitable. By utilizing furniture from your home, you will already be giving your office a personal touch.
Buy Essential Equipment
To keep the expenses to a minimum, you will want to decide what equipment is crucial during your working day. If you need a printer but only for limited use, you may want to look at some budget varieties that can handle the job but won’t break the bank. Many remote workers now use internet services for their phone lines rather than having another line installed in their homes. There are many affordable options available to get a personal work phone number without the need for additional lines, and this can save a lot of money and gives you a personal phone for work, rather than sharing the home phone.
Decorate Before Starting
While your office is empty, it would be a good idea to decorate it to give the area a clean look. Paint the walls a neutral color that won’t distract you while you work. If you have a window near where your desk will be and depending on how much sun comes through, you’ll need to decide if you need to install some shading options. Make a list of what electrical appliances you will need and if additional power sockets are required. Getting your electric outlets arranged so that they accommodate all your equipment is ideally done before you start painting or laying carpet.
Keep the Ongoing Costs Low
Have a look for the best broadband and telephone deals available before committing to one. There are low-cost internet telephony services available tailored for remote workers. Use LED lighting in all the light fittings to help keep your electricity bills as small as possible. Buy a desk fan rather than switching the air conditioning on every time, these savings alone could be massive over a year. In the wintertime, make sure you wear socks and a jumper instead of reaching for the central heating thermostat every time the temperature drops, heating costs can be huge when it is cold outside.
Personalize your Space
As you would if working at a desk in an office building, bring a few items from around your home to keep you happy. Photos of family or pictures your children have drawn help to give your office that personal touch. Keep fresh flowers or a desk plant to give your space extra oxygen while brightening up the area. Although you are working from home, it is essential to keep a few personal items that have meaning or that can provide a positive lift when you see them.
The key to having a great space to work is all in the planning. Be thorough when deciding how your office needs to work for you and don’t include items that are unnecessary or provide little value. Your working environment should be highly functional and comfortable when you need to spend all day sitting in front of a computer.