If you’re like many of us, you’re probably spending a good deal of time working from home. To be certain, there are plusses and minuses to that. There’s no commute and you get to work in your pajamas. But you also miss the interaction with others that fosters creativity and innovation.
With the right mindset, the right tools, and thoughtful design, it’s easy to create a home office that works for you.
Your first step should be an assessment of your needs. Do you really plan to “work” work from home, or are you just checking in? Is it a few minutes of responding to emails or do you have a full schedule? For some, a convenient cubby or workstation in the kitchen will suffice for bill-paying and occasional tasks. For some, an entire room might be called for.
If you’ve decided to dedicate a room towards creating your home office, location counts. Part of the beauty of having a home office is the ease of traveling from the den to work. Your break room is your own kitchen. But if your workload requires diligence, the proximity to the travel patterns in your home will come into play. Do you need a hide-away, free from the prying eyes and interruptions of others?
Being at work, even at home, doesn’t mean closing yourself completely off from the world. An unused corner or expanding storage space may be convenient for creating a home office, but consider the human need for sunlight. A delightful view might be just the thing to stir your creative juices.
Care should also be taken when choosing a desk. When you sit down with a lawyer, you expect to see shelves of legal books. When you visit with your doctor, you might be relieved to see some diplomas and medical journals. And both of those professionals are probably sitting behind a serious-looking desk.
Your home office, however, isn’t likely to see many clients. It’s just for you. Do you need the bulky executive desk in polished oak with a matching credenza? Will you be more comfortable with a sleek drafting table and a simple chair?
When designing the perfect custom home, we put a lot of thought into ergonomics. We study how the placement of walls, lighting controls, and appliances and the like fits into your workflow and lifestyle. If you enjoy cooking, you might grow weary of walking around the kitchen island every time you travel from the refrigerator to the stove.
This same consideration should play into your home office choices. Whether a huge desk or a small table, having enough room for your needs is important. You need space for your computer, a spot to jot down notes, and someplace safe to keep your favorite coffee mug. If you rely on books and reference materials, your storage solutions should be readily accessible. And the orientation of your desk and chair should make sense. If you have to crawl around something to get to work, you’ll be less inclined to do so.
Lastly, think color. Even though this is going to be a workspace, it’s still a part of your home. It’s an extension of your lifestyle and reflection of your personality. Wall colors, artwork, and smart lighting choices will make your home office every bit as warm and comfortable as the rest of your house.
We’ve helped many of our clients create the perfect home office. It may have been that kitchen nook. We’ve altered a garage plan to create a larger space for working. We’ve added a bedroom or additional den into a plan to accommodate a home office.
Each of our custom homes is designed with the needs of our client top-of-mind. Your home will be perfect for you.