Creating a Home Office that Works
Creating a home office takes some careful planning. Use these tips to designing a functional and comfortable home office that works for you.
Practical guidelines for creating a home office. To be successful a home office needs to be both functional and practical. You are going to be working in this environment for several hours each day so it is important that you make it as comfortable as possible. Here are some useful tips to make your home office work for you.
Select your space
First you need to decide where your home office will be situated. If you do not a have a room to spare then you need to find an area as far removed from distractions and noise as possible. How about under the stairs, or the corner of a large bedroom, is there unused space in the basement? Even a big closet can be converted into a home office with clever planning.
Plan your home office design
When creating a home office you need to plan where your furniture and equipment will go. Make a rough sketch so you can visualise the layout. Take into consideration aspects like power points, lighting, ventilation, access and storage space. Play around with your floor plan until you have something that works.
Organize your work and storage space
Selecting the right desk for your home office is vital. It has to be the right size to both accommodate your computer and peripherals such as a printer, keyboard and mouse and to fit into the space you have. Apart from allowing for adequate space for your computer the desk should have enough space to make notes on paper. Your desk should have at least one deep drawer for documents that you need quick access to and another smaller drawer for stationery. Check you have adequate leg space under the desk to sit comfortably. Keep wiring and power cords tidy and out of the way with the use of cable ties or conduit material.
A small filing cabinet is useful for storing your other business documents. A small cupboard also works for this purpose. If you have very limited floor space considering hanging some shelves for extra storage. If you are not a DIY fan then a carpenter can put shelves in your office fairly cheaply. Consider storing as many documents as possible electronically as this greatly reduces the need for storage space. You can store hundreds of documents on one CD and only print the document when you need it.
Make it fun as well as functional
Personalize your work space when creating a home office - it has to suit your personality and be a pleasant place to spend all that time. Hang a couple of pictures or posters. Display your own mission statement and goals. Just be careful not to clutter your working area. The more clutter-free your home office the easier it is to be organized and the more focused and productive you will feel.
Be ergonomics wise
Prevent backache and eyestrain by simply ensuring you are sitting with the correct posture and have adequate lighting. Your chair should offer good lumbar support and be at the right height. You should be able to sit with your feet flat on the ground with your knees bent at a ninety degree angle. The top of your computer screen should be level with your eye. Often the existing lighting in the area you have selected for your home office is inadequate for work space needs. You may need to install new or additional light fixtures or use a good desk lamp to provide adequate lighting.
Creating a home office that is right for you takes careful planning. Use these examples of transforming an area in your home into a functional home office to help you at Designing a Home Office
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Julia Derby has many years experience working in small business development. She has successfully started and developed a number of home businesses. Her free website http://www.my-home-business-ideas.com/ provides good ideas and advice for people who want to make money from home.