Whether you work from home or just spend large amounts of time on the computer, having a home office is useful. The space allows you to retreat from distractions in your home to work in a more focused environment. When remodeling a room into a home office, there are plenty of variables to consider. Which room will the office occupy? How should it be organized? What features are most important? Here’s a few ideas to get the ball rolling.
When deciding where to design your home office, consider spaces that aren’t being used. Guest bedrooms, attics, basements or dens are great places to convert to a home office. Redesigning one of these spaces doesn’t require you to discard or replace a functional room.
Guest room: A guest bedroom is a great place for an office because it is most likely sitting empty. Instead of letting the room collect dust, create a custom furniture piece – such as an armoire – that opens to reveal a desk, then closes when not in use. When a family member or friend stays the night, you can close the doors on your work to return the room to its original purpose.
Attic or basement: If you do not have rooms you want to convert to a home office, consider the attic or basement. The benefit of this method is that the space is secluded, giving you privacy. However, you may have to address issues of instillation, lighting and electrical wiring.
You may already have a room designated for your home office. In this case, make functionality a priority when considering design elements.
One of the most important features of a room is how it is lit. This is also true of a home office. If you’ll be spending a lot of time poring over a computer or paperwork, you’ll want pleasant lighting that keeps you alert and motivated. Trying to read without enough illumination can strain your eyes.
When choosing lighting options, natural is the way to go. Be sure your home office has plenty of windows to give yourself a view and all the sunlight you need to stay focused. Of course, sunlight can cause glare on a computer screen. Consider using Phantom’s retractable window screens – you can get mesh to block out the harsh light of the sun and reduce glare on your computer, letting you get back to work. Early in the morning or later at night when you want natural light to come in, you can retract the screen completely out of sight.
You’ll need a place to keep your office supplies, papers, files and electronics. Design your home office with storage and organization in mind. For a polished look, consider adding built-in book cases to the room. A wall of custom shelving units will give the room a clean and finished look. Be sure the units feature file cabinets and other sections that have doors. This way, you can hide loose files from sight.
Electronic devices common in a home office come with cords. When designing your home office remodel, find a way to hide the wires. One way is to keep a power strip in a drawer of your desk. Plug your computer, printer and chargers into the strip and have them run out the back of the drawer. This way, the power strip will be invisible yet easily accessible.
Retractable screens keep glare off your computer, but they can also add natural ventilation to your home office. When the screens are retracted, you’ll still get a great breeze in the room. When the screens are down you can enjoy having your window wide open without the bother of bugs!