Having a home office is a luxury to some while it’s an essential for others. But if getting a home office was simple, everyone would have one. This begs the question; do I need a home office? Many people immediately dismiss the idea of a home office.
They think of it as something fancy or notiony people have. Let’s find out where you sit on the spectrum of nice to have and need to have a home office. Plus, discover some tactful tips on how to survive without a home office.
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Do I Need A Home Office?
A home office is generally required if you regularly work from home at least a few days a week. Having a home office will allow you to establish a more ergonomic setup and minimize ergonomic injuries. A home office is also valuable if you have many documents or important equipment that you need to work on or store in a secure room.
Additionally, if you have regular meetings which involves clients calling to your home or you have confidential information to discuss on calls, a home office is often a necessity. A home office will also be valuable if there is limited space in existing rooms or these are occupied or subject to noise and distractions.
Having an office at home will be a no-brainer for certain professions. But not everyone needs a home office, and they can probably make do with using a room in their house.
But this archaic thinking really isn’t the case in a world where working from home is becoming more prevalent. Read on to see if you could benefit from a home office!
An estimated 22% of the workforce will be working remotely in 2025. Source
A home office is needed if you:
Work from home regularly
If you work from your home on a full-time basis, then a home office is going to be a necessity for most people. Most people working permanently at home will have an office at home. But some people won’t have space or be able to afford a home office.
Instead, they kit out a desk in a less frequently used room in their home.
This desk can be in any room, and indeed many people end up working from their bedroom.
But as you’re probably aware, it’s highly recommended to work in a separate room to your bedroom.
Here’s where the home office comes in…
If you can convert a room to a home office, it offers that separation from home life.
Plus, it also enables you to have an ergonomic workstation that’s not dismantled every time you want to use your dining room for visitors.
If you’re only working at home a few days a week, you may be on the fence as to whether you can justify the expense of a home office.
Most people can get away without a home office if they are working at home for just one day a week.
Besides, many workplaces won’t provide much equipment if employees are working from home for just that one day.
The aforementioned reasons will still apply, particularly the ergonomic workstation setup.
Can you establish a workstation in a corner of a room (preferably not your bedroom)? If so, then you could get away without a home office if you only work a few days at home.
If not, then you could always invest in a home office if you have a spare room available.
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Require an ergonomic setup
If you have any existing health conditions, such as back or neck pain, a proper workstation will be vital to preventing your condition being exacerbated.
I cannot stress enough the importance of setting up your workstation properly.
In my many years of completing ergonomic assessments, the majority of people I have spoken with have all experienced some form of discomfort or pain due to being seated at a poorly setup desk.
At a bare minimum, you’ll have a desk with your computer or laptop setup, an adjustable chair such as the CoolMesh Pro Multi-Function Chair (link on OfficeFurniture2Go).
Add to that a keyboard and mouse which will allow you a desk setup ergonomically to suit your needs.
Tip: If you’re sharing a workstation with someone, ensure you readjust it each time they use it.
Require a room for a work mindset
When you go to work in an office, you subliminally adopt a work mindset. This is because you associate the area with work. Similarly, when you are at home, you often won’t associate the area with work, unless you frequently bring work home or you have worked from home for a long period of time.
It can be difficult to get into a frame of mind for work when you’re working in a kitchen, dining room or bedroom.
As I mentioned previously, working from a bedroom is discouraged anyway as it clouds the lines between a work and a restful environment.
Additionally, distractions in the area can interrupt your focus and make it difficult to get work done.
Having a home office establishes a work life balance and an atmosphere where work is to be performed.
Furthermore, if you treat the room as a workplace and only use it for this purpose, then you’ll be surprised at just how focused and motivated you are to work.
Have many documents to work on or store
With data privacy laws and document retention growing in importance, there’s a greater awareness and focus on protecting important and confidential information.
Therefore, having your paperwork sprawled all over the kitchen table or in a room where kids or pets could easily tear it up is a massive no-no!
Besides, you’re probably too old to explain to your boss that the dog ate your homework…
A home office allows you the ability to lock away such information. This comes in rather useful when you have an array of documents that you have spread out and still need to work on the next day.
Plus, you can securely store accumulating documents in filing cabinets that are fire-retardant.
By being stored here, they won’t take up space in your home or look out of place like they would in your bedroom or dining room.
Plus, if there are students in the house or you want a dedicated location for filing personal documents, then a home office can be used for much more than just an office for work!
Have significant amounts or important equipment
Depending on your job or hobby, you could own or use a large amount of equipment. Such equipment could be expensive, large in size or sensitive to damage or calibration.
Whether you’re a coder with expensive computer screens and laptops, a DJ with decks, cabling and speakers, or a remote worker who needs printers, scanners etc., you’ll want to protect this kit.
Similar to the preceding section about storing documents, it’s much more secure and offers peace of mind to be able to have a dedicated room to lock away such instruments.
Plus, a locked home office minimizes the risk of people or busy bodies tampering or damaging them.
Additionally, it won’t consume space in your home. On top of that, if it’s stored in a dedicated room, you won’t have constant reminder of work every time you walk into your bedroom or dining room.
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Have regular meetings with clients in your home
The nature of your work will dictate whether you have clients visiting you. If it’s a regular occurrence, the type of service you provide and the impression you want to give them will influence the need for a home office.
Types of business that would require a home office include:
- Therapy, counselling, hypnosis, meditation
- Physiotherapy or physical handling of a client
- Accounting, bookkeeping, legal advice or discussing confidential information
- Nail salon, tanning
Some types of work will also require equipment. For instance, if you’re a therapist and need a bed or a couch for your patient to rest on.
If there’s a lot of equipment, then this will typically warrant a dedicated room for storing them.
Some of these businesses mentioned in the preceding section can also be completed online, e.g., bookkeeping, counselling. If that’s the case, then you could at least eliminate in-person visits.
Then, all you would need is a quiet, private space in your home while the calls are being held.
Have frequent confidential calls
Regardless of whether you have clients calling to your home or not, there may be scenarios and roles where you will engage in calls, be they confidential or not.
You will need to consider where you can take these calls that will be private, quiet and have a good connection. Also, consider lighting and background if you will be going on video calls.
In a world where we have lived off Zoom and Teams calls and will do so on a growing scale, this is an inevitable part of many people’s roles.
If you have only had a couple of calls to date, then you probably won’t need a home office and can manage from a room at home.
But, if you are someone in a role where your day is practically consumed with calls, particularly video calls, then a home office or at least a quiet room will be a must.
Rooms which are occupied or noisy
If you have your home to yourself most of the day or don’t have kids, pets or noisy people, it makes working at home much easier. When you are sharing the house with others, they inevitably create distractions.
Noise and distractions are especially prevalent if you are working in a room that:
- People frequently use, e.g., kitchen
- Is next to noisy rooms, such as kitchens or bathrooms
- Being shared with someone else, e.g., bedroom
If you can’t execute your work in these rooms or all the rooms tend to be occupied, then this makes for an excellent rationale to getting a home office.
Some people go to the extent of building on a home office to escape such noise and have a comfortable haven to work productively in.
While I’m not suggesting you go to that level, if there’s an existing room that can be redesigned into a home office, it could stop people using it for leisure and you could use it for work.
The room could be multi-purpose too…
If there are kids, teenager or other workers in the house, they could also use it for work, study or reading room if you were open to sharing it!
The more functionality that the room can offer, the greater the argument you can make for investing in it.
A home office is undeniably a useful room that will become increasing valuable in a work culture where working from home is growing. The above article has laid out the scenarios where a home office is essential and using this guide should help you make your decision.
Home offices are generally an essential for people who work at home full time, have clients visiting them or have a lot of documents or equipment associated with their work.
People who only work at home a few days a week can often manage by having a good desk setup in a corner of a room.
What should also be considered is how the home office can be used for multiple purposes, such as a study room, reading room and a storage area for documents.
If you’d like to broaden your knowledge further on working from home and useful and innovative trends, then these articles below are without a doubt worth a look!
Here are some other useful articles I wrote that you should go check out:
- Pros And Cons Of Sharing A Home Office + Surprising Insights
- Where To Study With A Dog – 5 Of The Best Spots For Any Pet!
- Why Is My Desk Messy? The Top 6 Reasons & Helpful Solutions
- Essential work at home gadgets – 5 must-haves!
- Is It Better To Work By A Window? – Proven Expert Studies!
- Corner desk with lifetime guarantee
- LED light, flicker-free, dimmable + lifetime warranty
- Bivi Table for Two by Office Designs
- 48″ 2-Person Workstation – Office Furniture 2 Go
- CoolMesh Pro Multi-Function Chair (link on OfficeFurniture2Go)