How to Create a Home Office When You’re Short on Space

Dated: 05/23/2020

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Amid the COVID-19 outbreak, millions of employees are working out of their homes — and approximately 54 percent hope to continue working remotely even after the pandemic ends. From benefits such as increased productivity to better health and happiness, many employees are experiencing the advantages of remote work for the first time, and tech companies like Square and Twitter are already announcing permanent work-from-home policies.

While working from home certainly has its benefits, you need a dedicated office space if you plan on telecommuting for the long haul. Without the right office space to work in, you could suffer from neck and back pain, and you may face ongoing distractions that negatively affect your performance. Plus, it’s possible to create an in-home office that boosts productivity and contributes to a happier and healthier workday, even if you’re short on living space. To learn how to do it, read on!

Plan Your Home Office Renovation

To create the ultimate home office, even when you’re short on space, you’ll need to start by considering your options and setting a budget. Whether your home is small or you’re out of unused space, a few possible locations for your home office could include a spare wall or nook, quiet attic, extra closet in a bedroom or hallway, or unused corner in a living room, kitchen, or bedroom. Plus, many compact desks and tables are available to accommodate office spaces of all shapes and sizes.

If you’re out of indoor space, you could convert an existing garage into an office or construct a new prefab steel building if you have the room for it in your backyard. Separating your new office from the rest of your home could actually make you more productive during the workday and help you to disconnect from household distractions — especially if you have kids at home. Depending on where you live, however, you may need to pay to heat and cool the garage, and you’ll likely need to invest in some good lighting to brighten the space and boost productivity.

Financing Your New Home Office

There are several ways to finance your home renovation if you’ll be converting a garage, attic, or part of an unfinished basement into a functional home workspace. For these larger home renovations, for instance, you could see if you qualify for a cash-out refinance or home equity line of credit. As another option, Bankrate recommends using credit cards that offer cashback rewards on qualifying home office purchases.

To save money on your renovation, especially if you’re paying in cash, The Spruce offers the following tips for creating a home office on a budget:

     Think about the projects you can DIY, such as painting your office walls

     Find creative ways to use the furniture, accessories, and decor you already own

     Purchase used office furniture on Facebook Marketplace and shop at your local flea markets and thrift stores

     Shop online at furniture outlets and discount stores

Enjoy the Benefits of Working from Home

To enjoy the many benefits of working from home, you’ll need to decorate your new workspace in a way that inspires and motivates you. This could mean painting the office walls, hanging some of your favorite photographs and other works of art, and investing in some table lamps, wall organizers, and bulletin boards. What’s most important is that you design your office in a way that fits your personality and maximizes your productivity.

By creating a functional home office space that you enjoy spending time in, you’ll feel much more productive and motivated to get work done — and you won’t mind putting in a few extra hours when your job requires it. Plus, you can easily create an office in your home or backyard — even if you’re short on living space or don’t have a whole lot of money to spend on a renovation. These tips will help you to do it!

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