10 Ways To Avoid a Ho Hum Home Office
Working from home has many benefits. Your work-life balance tips more to the life side, there’s no commute, and most importantly you get to design your own office. New homes have many areas that can be used for a home office. If you’re building a custom home, you can convert an attic or basement area during the design process. Even quick move in homes usually have a spare bedroom or nook that will make a great home office with a little redecorating. If you’re thinking of adding a place to work in your new home, here are 10 smart strategies to avoid a ho hum home office.
1. Ergonomics Matter
Homes are primarily designed for relaxation and rest. It’s important to keep in mind that even if you’re at home, your home office will be a workplace. Make sure your work space works for you. Don’t skimp on desks and chairs, or worry more about your home’s decorating scheme than workplace efficiency. Your desk should make it possible for your keyboard and mouse to be arranged so your arms are parallel to the floor. Your office chair should be comfortable, encourage good posture, and have proper back support. Find a chair that makes is possible for your feet to rest flat on the floor.
One of the most important ergonomic considerations in your new home office is selecting the proper monitor. Keep your monitor at or below eye level to reduce neck and eye strain. When the focal point of a monitor is slightly lower than your eyes, your eyelids naturally close a little as you look down at the screen. This helps moisten your eyes and reduces eye fatigue.
2. Use Natural Light
Office workers have a love-hate relationship with cubicles. They increase privacy in open workspaces, but they feel like pigpens for people sometimes. Cubicles work best when lighting is very bright and directly overhead. Unless you’re working in your front yard, that’s not how you’ll light your work area. Don’t mimic a work cubicle by putting your desk in a dark corner. Whenever possible, place your desk near a window, or parallel to it. A desk next to a window makes use of healthy natural light instead of harsh artificial light. It also gives you a nice excuse to look outside from time to time.
3. Lamps Make an Instant Office
Setting up shop on day one in quick move in homes is easy if you have the right artificial lighting. Natural light rules, but the sun won’t shine all day, every day. Attractive, functional tabletop lighting is the most important desktop accessory in your new home office. Watch out for lamps that look great in the showroom but take up too much space on the desktop.
4. Be Careful on Pinterest
It’s easy to get caught up browsing Pinterest. It only takes minutes to find an overwhelming number of great looking home office ideas. It’s dangerous to concentrate too much on appearances in the home office. You’re going to need to get stuff done, not just sit in it and enjoy the way it looks. A vintage desk that looks great in a Pinterest Pin might not deliver enough space for your lappie and printer. Chairs chosen for their appearance might not be so great for your posture. Bright colors might look great in photos, but can end up irritating you after looking at it for hours every day. Too much environmental stimulation can be distracting and make it difficult to get work done. When in doubt, simplify.
5. Don’t Overlook Storage
Working from home means you don’t have to stick to conventional office storage. Filing cabinets are effective, but not very attractive. There are plenty of ways to keep your paperwork handy without letting them turn into clutter. Get hanging magazine racks and bookshelves that are sized to accommodate your books and papers. Don’t try to work backwards and fit your stuff in whatever shelves you’ve got handy. One other reason to keep things neat on your shelves: They’re often in the background of your video conferences.
6. Make It Comfortable
The best part of designing offices for quick move in homes is making sure you’ve got a place to spread your legs when you’re not actively working. Keep a nice comfy chair in a corner, maybe even with an ottoman. If you’ve got room, a coffee table and a floor lamp is great for reading away from your desk. In your home office, you’re the boss. There’s no reason you shouldn’t have the equivalent of a corner office instead of a lowly cubicle.
7. Plan for Office Supplies
If you’re new to working from a home office, storing office supplies might be an afterthought. Even though you’re working alone, you’re going to need one or two of everything a big office requires. Like big offices, your home office should keep a ready supply of office supplies close at hand. It’s disruptive to have to visit the store every time you need a pencil, and productivity suffers when supplies aren’t handy.
8. Add Plants
Science has shown that plants make people happier. Bringing a little outside inside will liven up your home office. Most plants only require a little care and feeding. Choose plants that can go for short periods without watering, so you can close off your office for the weekend without worrying about them.
9. Accentuate the Positive
Many office machines and accessories are utilitarian-looking at best. Some are plain ugly. Your office is going to have things you don’t like to look at. There are bound to be connecting wires, cables, and extension cords. In custom homes, a lot of wiring for home offices can be built into the walls, ceilings, or floors. In quick move in homes, you might have to improvise. Stash ugly appliances in cabinets and closets if you can, along with the office supplies. Use raceways and cable ties to keep cords out of sight.
10. Freshen It Up From Time to Time
It’s great to have photos of the family or awards in your office. They help keep you grounded in what’s important, and provide something pleasant to look at when you’re feeling stressed. However, if pictures and mementos never change, they begin to blend in with the rest of the office. Make sure your personal objects never go stale by rotating pictures in and out.
If you’re in the market for custom or quick move in homes in Pennsylvania or Delaware, contact Chetty Builders to find out more. Chetty Builders has many standard plans that can modified to make the home office of your dreams come true.
Categorised in: Homeowner Tips
This post was written by Chetty Builders