With more of us working from home and the future looking like this will become the new way of working for many of us. There will be no more hot desking it or those long commutes.
We just now need to turn our attention into creating a working environment that fits in with our home – whether it be building something totally new hidden in our gardens or converting the garage that you said when you bought the home would be a great space for the kids to have a playroom! But you find it still full of boxes, bicycles that have seen better days, the all important power tools you bought on offer to start one of many DIY projects! And the kids are now at the stage where their left hand has now developed a grip tighter than Mike Tyson, fingers that type quicker than the speed of light and if without it they feel completely isolated from all forms of society (the smart phone!)
So we now need to look at how we can create the perfect work environment in our home without compromising the balance of where we live.
First we need to consider our budget – is this something that you have already factored in and there are funds already in a pot? Or has this pandemic caused you to re-evaluate your situation and this is a new cost you will need to factor in?
My first and most important piece of advice – is what ever your budget is – you definitely need to create a separate space from home to office – this helps on both sides. When you’re working it will enable you to focus on the tasks in hand, you’re less likely to get distracted getting caught up in everyday tasks, and when you’re not working you will be less likely to get dragged back into doing extra hours when you should be focusing on home time.
Home Office with a budget –
So when there is money in the pot and you have the space to either convert or add the first point of call is contacting a recommended local builder. Having a builder with experience and knowledge of the area will not only be a great network for putting you in touch with architects to draw up plans and to give you ideas– they will know the type of grounds your house is built on, the materials which were used for building your home and have experience of dealing with local planners and applications.
Once you have found your builder – the next stage is to use either their in-house architect or one that they recommend. Many builders offer this service as well as project management. Something else you need to factor in to your time and budget is how much involvement in the build you want to have and be honest with yourself as we are I know we are all guilty of seeing George Clarke or Kevin McCloud on Grand Designs and thinking I will have a go at that! But then you see the build still not complete 12 months later and the families have 2 more kids and one on the way! It might be better to suck it up and let the experts get on with the task in hand; a good building company will ensure they keep you informed every step of the way.
(Just always insure you have an absolute maximum budget, planning has been approved, everything has met building regulations and you have a maximum time frame so that everyone is on the same page.)
Office with out a budget
Get a desk! By this I mean don’t use the kitchen table to discover last nights dinner has now stained those documents you need to post. Keep your home life as separate as possible. Look for a space or corner in your home that you can designate to being your place of work. Find a desk and chair that is practical – it’s really important to remain focused while seated to ensure “we are all sitting comfortably”!
There are now some great independents that specifically deal in office furniture so it doesn’t necessarily have to be flat pack or commercial looking.
Upgrade your Wifi – you have been meaning to call BT for months to review your TV package! So give them a call and check you are on the best broadband as this is something they are constantly updating and there is nothing worse than slow service and it will keep you better focused when the day is running smoothly.
Lighting – look at your lights; if you are spending hours at your desk consider changing your light bulbs to a softer tone to help with your focus.
And make sure you can get some fresh air or nature near – its important to still make time for lunch and move away from your work area in order to perform better in all areas.
And remember “No one on his deathbed ever said, 'I wish I had spent more time at the office.” ... So enjoy your new freedom of being able to work from home.