Working from home is not a trend anymore; it's the new normal for the time being. We would all love a spacious space with a big window and ample storage, but the ground reality is altogether different for most people. The sudden outbreak of Coronavirus pandemic has resulted in most office workers to alter a certain space in their home into a makeshift home office. This might not be the ideal situation as a lack of space is a big issue for productivity and motivation. The key is to embrace the notion that a home office is more about a state of mind than it is about real estate.
Without an organized workspace, the home/work environment can quickly become disorganized and stressful. Additionally, for those who live in a smaller home or apartment, it might not even be possible to dedicate an entire room solely to work. We get that for most people working from home, the reality is not a large room dedicated solely to getting stuff done; it's a tiny desk and a spare dining room chair in the corner of your living room. But just because space is short, that doesn't mean you can't create a fab inspiring home office. Choosing a smart design and following some simple rules is the key to transform your small office space into a functional, practical, and beautiful space.
If space is not a constraint for you, check out our blog for an ideal WFH setup
In this article, we discuss simple and effective tips and tricks for a home workspace if you don't have the luxury of a big space or room in your house. Here are 15 ideas for a fabulous workspace in a small space at home:
Create an office zone in your living room
Turn an area of your living room, or hallway into a small office using a comfortable chair and an attractive office desk. You can get desks in every size and style, so it is not hard to find unobtrusive office furniture that will match your room and your existing furnishings.
Look for an Unused space
Those small 'dead' spaces we all have in our homes – next to the wardrobe, under the stairs – are all potential temporary (or maybe permanent) office spaces. It just needs it to be wide enough to squeeze in a desk! Add in a stool, desk lamp, and some cozy carpet and you are good to go.
Manage your cables
Nothing slows down productivity like a space that's messy and doesn't feel comfortable. Tuck your cables and wires away behind your desk and around the walls. You can tie those up and even use clips to help manage them and keep them from tangling up.
Find the right chair that tucks in nicely
When setting up a home office in a small space, it's important to maximize your workspace as much as possible. You can do this by opting for an ergonomic office chair that slides easily under the desk. Avoid wide, bulky office chairs that take up more space. Choosing a desk chair that doubles as a dining chair or sitting chair is a great way to save space in a small home.
Right colors help
The best home office setups are customized to suit the tastes of the people working there. You want to make space feel yours by using colors that you associate with warmth and happiness. This encourages creativity, creates a sense of cohesiveness, and helps you feel calm and comfortable.
Use a partition
If you have a slightly larger living room (or other bigger spaces), then you can carve up the space to create an office nook using a bookcase as a visual divider. Or opt for an open bookcase for two-sided storage and a more open feel. Another option is to use a folding screen.
Choose a sleek small desk
Plenty of desks incorporate storage, but in a small space, you will want to find a slim one that doesn't dominate the space. It simply needs to have a large enough surface area to accommodate what you need at hand—for most people, a laptop—and be 28 to 30 inches above the floor. That means it can be as little as 20 inches (or less) deep and as wide as you have room for.
Try your closet
While this might not be a preferable solution for most people, it's a useful idea. This can be done by removing all the shelves from an existing closet; and by installing a floating shelf that can work as a desktop. The closet can be kept closed with a sliding door so that it is out of sight when not in use.
You do not have to keep all your files and documents in paper form. Today, you can securely keep them in the cloud. Cloud storage will also allow ease of accessibility. By minimizing the number of paper files, you will surely get more spaces for other office supplies and essentials or keep your office looking bigger and clear.
If you do need papers and folders for your day-to-day work, then selecting a desk with built-in file storage can go a long way towards reducing the square footage needed to create a proper workspace in a smaller setting. Mobile pedestals for files and folders mean everything is at your fingertips when you need it and can be neatly tucked away when you don't.
Lighting is critical
A change in lighting can significantly shift the appearance of small office space. Use general lighting to enhance the place; bright lights for tasks requiring it; and quiet back-lighting on the monitors to prevent eye strain. When dealing with spaces with little to no natural light, lighting is vitally important.
Install shelving that goes high up, stack your drawers, and make use of the space below the desk. By building vertically instead of horizontally, you're still using the same amount of floor space in your home while optimizing storage space, keeping everything you need nearby.
Use an existing table
Don't have room for a desk? Turn an existing table into a desk. Dining tables, coffee tables, and nightstands are all examples of existing tables that can be turned into temporary or permanent workstations. Having a piece of furniture that works double-duty is the best way to save space.
Featured product: Ducky chair
If your home office is just your kitchen table but you still need space to keep your papers, stationery, and tech, using an ottoman that can just sit at the end of your bed is an easy solution. Just fill it with desk organizers and use the lid to pop your notes and calendar.
The effect that mirrors can make is surprising. Mirrors make the room appear bigger since it reflects light. And they tend to be extremely decorative. Be sure, however, to choose the right size mirror and position it in the right location.
Introducing elements of bright colors, proper lighting for work, and getting rid of clutter will go a long way towards achieving a functional and enjoyable office even if you are tight on space. Having the right furniture for a small space can turn any home office set-up into success for you. A small space should not have to be a productivity killer.
Happy Working at Home!