I’ve heard people call working from home “the dream”. There are a lot of advantages to it, especially if you make your own hours, but an improper setup can cause a serious loss in productivity. There’s a lot of distractions in the home, from family members to chores you want to do to your home entertainment system; that’s why it’s a good idea to set up a home office. A few questions you’ll want to consider when setting up your home office:
- What will I be doing, and what equipment will I need to do it?
- Will anyone visit my office? If so, who?
- When will I be working in the office?
The first couple of questions will give you a good idea of how large a space you’ll need for your office. When your setup consists of a PC and a desk, a relatively small space will do. Work that requires a PC, a copier, a printer, teleconferencing equipment and space for multiple people will require a much larger room. When designing a home office, as in many things, function must come before form.
The last question will give you an idea about what kind of sonic and lighting elements will be necessary in the room. Those who plan on working when there’s going to be a lot of noise in and around the house will want to soundproof their rooms; those who plan on working late will want adequate lighting, and those who work in the day will want big windows to let in the sunlight.
Work-life balance is incredibly important, and those lines can become blurred when you’re work and your life all take place in the same building. Creating a division between spaces for leisure and spaces for work can be incredibly important, allowing you to separate the two mentally as well as physically. With separate spaces, you won’t literally see your two lives dragged in front of each other; cleaning time and chores for your home space should be taken care of at a different time than for your work space, and you should avoid bringing work related documents and items outside of your office and into the rest of your home.
You want to decorate the space in a way that’s invigorating and personal; obviously, if you’re going to have clients in the office, tastefulness is a must. Make sure not to over clutter the space; too much visual information can distract you from the task at hand. You should avoid putting games, TVs or other distractions in the room with you; the space should be a sanctuary in which you can dedicate yourself to your work.
When you have a home office, there may be a number of different tax deductions you can take, based on how much space the office takes up and how much time each day you spend there. You can also deduct home office related equipment for your business. Compass Accounting can help you discover all of the tax benefits that come with having a home office.