We’ve talked before about creating the perfect exterior office, so it seems to make sense to examine the flip side: the interior office! For most people, this will be the first choice when it comes to creating an office in their home— but getting an interior office right is often easier said than done.
An office is a work space, which means it has to — first and foremost — serve an important purpose in your life. However, the office is also a part of your home, thus it needs to have a degree of flexibility to how it can be used and the purposes it is suitable for. You also have to try to balance the practical requirements with your preferred decor trends. Essentially, creating a home office that suits all of these purposes can be incredibly difficult— but here’s what you need to keep in mind to make it work…
Ensuring Your Home Office Fits Your Home
Designate the space
First and foremost, your home office needs to be in a designated area. This, however, is often easier said than done.
- If you have a room that you can dedicate solely to your office, then this is — obviously — going to be the best option wherever possible.
- If you don’t have an individual room, then your best bet might be to create a room within an existing room. Opt for room dividers or, better yet, a glass wall installation that allows you to separate off a section of a room to be used as your office space.
When you have designated the space you are going to use for your office, you can move on to…
Look at practical matters first
Your first step should always be dealing with the practical matters first. Here are a few questions you’re going to need to answer:
- Where are you going to keep the desk?
- How much storage do you need?
- What do you need in terms of electric supply; for example, are you going to need an extension cord or a power hub?
- Is the Wifi signal in the room (or area of a room) you have chosen sufficient?
- How will you maintain the temperature of the room at a level you are comfortable working at?
That may sound like a lot to run through but, realistically, it’s actually fairly basic considerations. The key thing is to answer these questions and plot the practicalities of your new home office first. If you do this, you can be confident that every other decision you make will be compatible with your actual requirements.
Choose storage large enough to have spare space
Above, we mentioned that you have to consider how much storage you’re going to need. When you have got an idea in mind to answer this question, double it.
You will always need far more storage in an office than in any other room— it’s inevitable. Furthermore, you will need storage not just for items related to the office itself. Home offices have a habit of collecting junk from other rooms that has no other natural home, so you’re going to want to incorporate the need for a large amount of storage space into your initial plans.
If in doubt, it’s best to opt for shelves as storage space. You can then store items in boxes or just out on display, and if you need more space, you can always hang another shelf.
Examine the comfort issues
When you have the storage and the practicalities taken care of, you can move to thinking about ensuring that your office is as comfortable as possible.
- The single most important comfort consideration is your office chair. Choosing an office chair is not a process you should do online; if possible, go to showrooms and try out as many chairs as you can before committing to buy. Given that a bad office chair can damage your neck, back, and arms, you’re definitely going to want to ensure you get this decision right.
- The next point for comfort is how you are going to use a computer. When using a keyboard, your wrists will be incredibly vulnerable, so you may want to consider investing in ergonomic supports, keyboards, or mice; these can help to ensure you don’t suffer any repetitive motion injuries as a result of long hours working.
- You may also want to consider a foot stool to be placed beneath your desk, especially if you suspect you’re going to spend long hours sitting down at a time.
- Another aspect of comfort you should consider is the comfort related to convenience. You may want to install a mini fridge in your office so that you don’t have to go to the kitchen when you need a fresh water, for example. Coffee machines are also common additions to a home office. So think about your convenience when setting up the area; you want the use of your office to be simple, enjoyable, and carefree.
Add the finishing decorative touches
When you have considered all of the above, you can finally move onto the part of creating a home office that’s actually fun… decoration.
- Think about the color that you choose for the walls, as colors can influence mood. You may want to choose light greens and blues, which should help to create a calm, relaxing environment that lets you focus on your work.
- Try to keep patterns to a minimum; they can be distracting in your peripheral vision, which is less than ideal if you’re trying to focus on a big project.
- Finishing touches and decorative ornaments that have no function beyond you liking the way they look absolutely have a place in your home office. Making the room for a few things that bring you joy is always going to be worth doing; you don’t have to opt for practical choices every time!
While the elements you have in your home office will always, in some ways, be subjective, the factors as mentioned above are excellent additions that can help make your home office as good as it can possibly be. When you plan your renovation, focusing on covering the areas as described will ensure that you are able to achieve a home office that is perfectly able to blend function, style, usability, and flexibility— enjoy it!