Now is a critical time within our careers to have a convenient location to work away from the normal office. In addition, the continuing COVID-19 pandemic has made it more common to work remotely. However, to sustain the same effectiveness and productivity levels at home as we had in the office environment requires a more than sufficient home office setting.
Your home office can be as large or as small as you need it to be. The space you will need will depend on the type of work one does. A writer, for example, may only require a corner space to fit a desk and chair, with a laptop and a writing pad nearby. An architect, though, would need extensive space to fit viewing large blueprints on and possibly walk around it as well.
A home office is not just simply a temporary environment where you can ably work, yet it does not need to be a permanent setting that you cannot roam from when one sees fit. Instead, it has to be functional but with a view to the setting being useful in the future, when life returns back to normal.
As a side thought, having a dedicated office area has been seen to increase the value of a property; if you are planning on moving, you can get a free valuation from companies such as Spring who can tell you how much of an impact your new home office has had.
The focus when creating a healthy home work environment is not on comfort – even though we previously spent considerable time at work, we probably were oblivious to how we can make this time healthier.
A few minor changes and possibly furniture upgrades can modify your physical and mental health while working from home, boosting your productivity and overall satisfaction.
By making a few adjustments to your working set-up, you can significantly reduce the ergonomic risks and ensure your home office set-up is so much better:
- Make sure that the computer screen is situated at eye level and situated on a specific monitor stand,
- Regularly place your shoulders towards the back of your chair,
- Put your feet flat on the floor, with no crossing of your feet.
A home office set-up can be as expensive (or cheap) as you desire. Basically, all that is required is a suitable work desk to place your laptop on and a sturdy chair. But, of course, this strategy is not the optimal approach to work effectively from home.
Work desks can be purchased quite reasonably, and the costs will vary depending on what material it is made from, and how many ‘extras’ it has. An adjustable stand-up work desk can cost anywhere from £400 to £800, while a standard wooden desk will set you back approximately £100 to £200.
Office chairs will significantly differ in value – and it might be the best investment you will make when furnishing your personal home office. Depending on how technical they are, chairs that are large, comfortable and supportive will cost approximately £150 to £200.
Shelves and storage units add décor and style to your home office and the cheaper units will only cost around £50 apiece. Such a small investment will make working from home that much more pleasant and satisfying.
Within the current working climate, your employer should be supportive when establishing a home office – even more so if it is based on their needs and interests. Each business will provide information about what they can and cannot provide you as a home worker – especially if you have been given no choice as to whether you can work from home or not.
If you have been ‘shoved’ into a home working situation with no other practical alternatives, you can claim some tax assistance with specific bills – like your home gas and electricity. If you can, discuss with a financial advisor or accountant about the potential tax breaks you may be entitled to.
And if you are looking to sell your home quickly, then there are a few clever renovation tasks that you can apply to either your study or office quarters that will definitely increase the value of your whole residence.
Throughout these unsettled times, introducing a home office environment has never been more important to you and your career. You will not require considerable space or a substantial budget; what you do need is a workable desk and a peaceful and ambient environment. There is a definite attraction to creating an office workspace that is not only practical, but one you can call your own.