|Pursuing YOUR dream may require a home office/ workplace. Our guest blogger, Tina Martin, offers some very helpful tips on how to plan for or create the perfect space for you. Space matters!|
An increasing number of the United States workforce telecommutes. With benefits like less stress, higher employee morale, and fewer office-related distractions, it’s no wonder why the ability to work remotely is so important among today’s job-seekers. Plus, remote employees save approximately $476 on fuel expenses and 34 hours in commuting each month.
If you’re ready to dive into all those benefits, start with setting up an ideal space for your business needs, read on!
If You’re Buying or Building a New Home
If your current home lacks the space you need to designate an area to your business, buying or building a new home may be the best option for you. Before buying or building a home with added office space, however, it’s important to:
- Calculate how much square footage you need. To qualify for a home office tax deduction and to ensure that you’ll have plenty of space for your business needs—including additional room for storage—think about the minimum amount of square footage you need in a new home.
- Select a few possible locations for your home business. If you’ll be meeting with customers, patients, vendors, or other clients, look for properties (or a plot of land) in affordable, yet client-friendly locations.
- Keep parking in mind. If clients will be visiting you, look for properties that offer convenient parking for your guests—whether it be a driveway or ample street parking in front of the home. ProMatcher says asphalt lot prices start at around $1.60 per square foot.
- Research the price of available homes or land. Once you decide on the approximate square footage and location of your new home, research and compare prices in your desired areas. For a ballpark idea, Redfin points out homes in the Verona area sold for an average of $392K last month.
- Get pre-approved for a mortgage. Once you’re pre-approved for a home loan, meet with a qualified real estate agent to begin your search for a new home or plot of land.
After buying or building your new home, you can finally move in and begin to design your perfect home-based office.
If You’re Designing an Office in Your Current Home
Whether there’s just enough space in your home to build an office for your business needs or you’re designing the ultimate home office that will impress all your visitors, it’s important to choose a space that offers plenty of privacy—especially if you’ll be welcoming guests into your home. Some possible locations for creating a home office may include a loft, garage, or an unused bedroom.
After selecting a location for your home-based office, you can move onto the fun part—designing your workspace! When designing your office, think about the different types of furniture, tech equipment, and lighting you’ll need to get your work done each day. If you’ll be meeting with clients, you may need to invest in a couch, table and/or set of chairs for your visitors to use.
In addition to the furniture and equipment you’ll need, it’s important to think about the style and color of the room as well. For instance, you may choose to:
- Paint the walls a color that evokes emotion, productivity, or a sense of calmness.
- Hang artwork, wall shelving units, and/or bulletin boards.
- Use cord and cable organizers to enhance the look of your workstation.
- Position your desk near a window or piece of interesting artwork.
Will you build, buy, or simply slide an office into an existing space? While the look and feel of your space will depend largely on the nature of your work and whether you’ll be welcoming clients, patients, or other customers into your home, these simple tips will help you establish a functional space for your home-based business needs. Since you’ll be spending a great deal of time there, design it in a way that inspires you and lifts productivity.