Working from home remains a popular option for many, but have you looked at ways to make the most out of your space?
A lot of us have learnt that working from home isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. With constant distractions like kids or the TV, and problems such as lack of space, it can be hard to concentrate and stay motivated.
But setting up a dedicated space that you love will work wonders for your productivity. And the best part? It doesn’t have to cost much. Here’s how you can create a home office on a budget.
Be creative with space - create an 'office nook'
It doesn’t matter where you set up your home office, as long as it’s a dedicated space for you to work in. Not everyone has a whole room they can dedicate to their work, so it could be in a summerhouse in the garden, under the stairs, or in the corner of your living room. With some creative thinking, even the smallest of spaces can be transformed into a functional working area.
Don’t overlook a desk
Many people have been working on their kitchen or dining tables, or even on their laps on the sofa. You might feel you don’t have the space for an office desk, but they don’t need to be big and bulky in order to get the job done. A cute little dressing table can be used as a desk, or a nice piece of wood erected in an alcove can work perfectly well. Desks come in all shapes and sizes and having your own desk area means it will be a lot easier to organise your work life.
For a budget desk, keep an eye on second-hand sites or visit some charity shops. With a bit of elbow grease and a tin of paint, you could create a unique desk for very little money.
Light up your life
Look after your eyes and avoid headaches by buying a cheap desk lamp so you can keep your work area well-lit. Budget or free lamps can often be found on secondhand sites but you can also find new ones for under £10 in stores like Matalan and Argos.
Have a place for all your bits and pieces so they don’t go missing and you don’t waste time looking for them. You could buy a nice pot for your pens (or use an old jam jar to save even more money!) and trays for your paperwork. Put up some shelving to hold files and make sure they’re all labelled clearly. Narrow drawers like these from IKEA work well for storage when space is tight.
Staying organised and avoiding clutter will help to keep your mind clear to focus on the task at hand.
Use the wall space
If your home office area is small (and even if it isn’t), make good use of the vertical space around you. Apart from attaching shelving to the walls, you could also hang noticeboards, or perhaps paint a wall with blackboard paint to create a useful area to scribble important notes. You can buy a tin of blackboard paint for £6.69 on Amazon.
Add a personal touch
Make your workspace an area you’re going to enjoy. Buy yourself a cool mug for your morning drink, a coaster with a motivational quote on it, or put up pictures of family or far-flung destinations that inspire you to keep going. A simple vase of flowers cut from the garden or even a cheap cactus plant from IKEA will add interest to the area and make it more pleasurable to be in.
Be safe and comfortable
You may not be in the office having to abide by their health and safety rules, but that doesn’t mean your physical health shouldn’t be considered. Investing in a good chair will help to support your posture and keep you comfortable – important if you’re going to be spending many hours sat at your desk - but don’t forget to take regular breaks!
Find out how to choose the best office chair. Although this may be the most expensive item you buy for your home office, it’s also the most important, and you could easily find one to fit your budget on secondhand sites.
Creating a home office on a budget is easier if you spend some time looking for pre-loved items. You could save a lot of money this way, and who doesn’t love grabbing a bargain? Some of the sites to look on include Facebook Marketplace, local groups on Facebook, Gumtree, and eBay.
If you want to save more money, find out how to shop smarter and cut down on food waste too.
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