Today, a growing number of households consider a home office a necessary part of family life. If you work from home, need a space to pay bills, store documents, house a computer or just create a family hub, a dedicated home office space can serve your needs.
Whether you’re fortunate enough to have a room solely dedicated as a home office, shouldn’t deter you from carving out a space for work in your home. Many households find that a corner of the living room, bedroom or kitchen will suffice. Regardless of size or placement, here are some elements you’ll find helpful to create a great working environment at home.
A great home office starts with the desk, the workhorse of any office space. Everyone needs a place to set their laptop, monitor or a place to write. Even if you predominately work with a tablet or laptop, a desktop surface gives you a place to corral your supplies, spread out and work. Storage for office supplies can be incorporated into your desk via drawers, shelving, and baskets. Technology has altered many of the ways we handle documents, but most households are still trying to tame the paper tiger. A good filing system is a must.
Designers will tell you lighting is key. You should try and incorporate three types of lighting. Ambient lighting from the overhead or peripheral lighting in your room. Natural lighting from the daylight entering your room through windows and skylights. If possible, place your office area near a window. You’ll benefit from the natural lighting and hopefully enjoy a lovely view. Most important in an office environment is task lighting. You’ll want to have a lamp nearby to meet your needs.
Unless you like to work standing up, you’re going to want a comfy chair! It’s important that it provide a comfortable seat and be ergonomically suited to your needs. If several family members share your home office, an adjustable chair is wise. There are many practical,stylish office chairs on the market. Don’t feel that yours must look like it came from Dunder Mifflin! And if you can find an appropriately comfortable chair, feel free to branch away from the office supply aisle.
Many home offices serve as a family command center. A Grand Central Station to keep track of the comings and goings of today’s busy families. Add a family calendar so you’ll know who needs to be where and when. Files or in/out boxes for family members, keep track of permission slips, team schedules, and other important, but clutter inducing paperwork. Meal-planning, mail-sorting, bill-paying, and homework are accomplished easier with a purposeful space in your home.
Lastly, don’t forget to inject your own personality and use your favorite colors. Just because it’s a home office doesn’t mean it has to be boring! Share family photos or display your children’s masterpieces. Get yourself a funky stapler if that makes you happy. Often, it’s the little details that make a space your own.