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Home Office Set Up

3 Steps To Get You Started

by Lloyd Burrell

Your laptop is ready and clients are waiting... it's time to set up your home office. Whether you've negotiated a remote work arrangement with your employer or have decided to become your own boss, a little thought about what you really need will help you set up a productive work area at home. You'll find millions of pages of home office organization advice online – everything from ridding yourself of clutter to finding workplace zen - but before you lose yourself in the finer points of Feng Shui, I suggest you get started with these 3 simple steps.

Step #1 – Define Your Work

Begin by thinking about what you're actually going to get paid for.

When you're finally sitting at your desk, it's easy to lose time dealing with administrative details or getting distracted by “productivity tools”.

Take the time before you start to define your priorities.

This will help you design your home office in a way that supports you in avoiding unprofitable activities and staying productive.

lady sitting at desk

Ask yourself these questions:

What is the product or service that I'm selling, and what specific activities are required to produce it?

What tools, reference material and supplies do I need access to?

Will clients visit me in my home office?

Will installing specialized equipment or services help keep me on track?

Whatever your circumstances, at the most basic level you are probably setting up a home office in order to make money. The more clearly you can define the nature of the work you're getting paid for, the better you will be able to make this happen. Defining your work will also guide you in investing in the most useful tools and accessories for your specific needs.

Step #2 – Fit Your Space

Now that you know what you need to get done, it's time to look for a place to do it. While size and floor plan have an obvious influence on where you set up your home office, your options are not as limited as you may think. Even if you don't have an entire room to dedicate to a home office, you can still make sure your most practical needs are met by choosing the right furniture and accessories to give you the space, storage and functionality that you need.
man on mobile phone at desk Whether you've decided that your first priority is a large desktop work area, plenty of file storage or simply finding a way to fit a complete office into the corner of your bedroom, a little bit of online research will show you a variety of affordable options.

Even a small space can yield a generous desktop work surface by installing a wall-hugging L-shaped desk in the corner.

If you'll be meeting with clients, you'll find that there are very affordable office furniture sets available which manage to look elegant and traditional (or if you prefer, contemporary and artistic) without breaking your budget.

If buying online, remember to consider all aspects of the shopping experience to ensure that you're completely satisfied. Look for a low price combined with responsive customer service, easy returns, and free shipping.

Step #3 – Choose Your Tools

The next question is:

What do you need to have on hand to make your home office really work for you?

The answer may be as simple as “just a clear head and an internet connection”.

There are affordable desks available which combine remarkably efficient use of space with style and practicality. If you don't need regular access to files or specialized equipment, you may decide that a compact, efficient work station with an ergonomic chair are all that you need to get started.

On the other hand, if you use a scanner, printer, webcam, phone and reference material every day, you'll want to design a layout that gives you easy access to these tools without having to cross the room every time you need them.

With a little research, you'll find a variety of options for desks with built-in storage designed for modern office tools and accessories .

Be wary of cluttering your desktop – if the desk itself doesn't have enough built-in storage, keep frequently used items close at hand with under-desk filing cabinets, wall-hanging shelves and rolling supply carts.

lady in office

With a little planning, you really can design to fit your needs while using a very small amount of floor space.

Following these three simple steps in setting up your home office will get you off to a great start. There's always time to add bells and whistles as you go along, but if you've made it this far you'll be able to work productively and enjoy all the benefits of being able to work at home.

About the Author:

Lloyd Burrell edits the Internet's leading home office desk furniture website. He is a big fan of corner office desk models and other practical space-saving office tools. Having said that, you'll only find him in his home office when he's not otherwise occupied traveling with his wife and two children, practicing guitar, or enjoying the beauty of his home in Charente Maritime (near Bordeaux), on the beautiful Atlantic coast of France. T




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