Plan Your Space
Redefine Your Space
You probably already have a space that you use as a home office. It may be a dedicated room, or it may simply be the spot in your home that best fits your computer desk. For others still, the home office is split between the kitchen table and the file cabinet in the closet. No matter what your space is like, it’s time to redefine it. By making a few layout choices, you can improve your comfort and productivity.
Choose Your Home Office Space
The first part of setting up your home office is choosing the right space. If you already have a dedicated home office room, reconsider how you use the space you have. If you’re moving into a new house or have some flexibility in the placement of your home office, consider the following options:
1. Assess Light Levels: Natural light tends to provide the best tone for being productive, and it’s often considered most pleasing to the eye. Still, natural light can make it more difficult to see your computer screen. Excess light can raise the temperature in your home office — a big consideration, as computers and peripherals also put out heat.
2. Central or Remote? A central room is excellent for a home office that sees a lot of use. If you place a wireless router in your home office, a central location may ensure good wireless coverage. Looking for peace and seclusion? Remote rooms generally offer the best privacy and the least noise.
3. Single or Dual-Purpose Room? Your home office doesn’t have to be a room of its own. A dual-purpose room can serve as living room, guest room or even game room. When setting up a home office in a dual-purpose room, choose office furniture that maximizes your use of space, such as a smaller computer desk. You can even find home office furniture that matches the dominant design theme of your room — such as wood filing cabinets. Remember that the other uses of your dual-purpose home office room may impact your ability to perform home office tasks. For instance, if your home office is also a guest room, you may be barred from using it when you have overnight visitors.
Choose Home Office Colors
Paint colors can play a big part in how you feel about your home office space. When choosing, take into account not only wall and furniture colors, but computer and accessory colors as well. And while you can simply choose to decorate your home office with your favorite colors, you might also want to consider the effect color can have on your mood and energy level.
White, Off-White, Cream
Open. Whites reflect light; brightening your home office and making it seem larger.
You have a dim or dark office that needs to be brightened. White can raise the energy level without adding color.
Your room has too much light, or if you need to raise the energy level in the room.
Gray, Tan, Brown
Tranquil. Neutrals tend to be low energy colors.
You need to lower the energy level in your room to get work done.
You use your home office to perform tedious or uninspiring tasks. Neutrals can put you to sleep.
Blue, Green, Purple
Calming. Cool colors tend to be docile and contemplative, without being negative or depressing.
You need stimulation while working without raising your anxiety level. Cool colors (especially green) are the most highly recommended for home offices.
You must up the energy level in your office in order to get anything done.
Yellow, Orange, Red
Active. Warm colors raise the energy levels of rooms and make them appear cozier.
You need extra energy to get things done. You enjoy a little extra stimulation.
You require tranquility and calm to focus on work.
Bright Yellow, Bright Orange, Hot Red
Energetic. Bright colors can be stimulating, aggressive or even distracting.
You are not easily distracted and need a greatly increased energy level.
You are especially susceptible to anxiety in your office environment. We recommend using bright colors sparingly when decorating your home office.
Navy, Dark Blue, Black
Focused. Dark colors direct attention away from themselves, toward whatever you may be working on.
You need a focused work environment that allows for very little distraction.
You feel too isolated in your home office. Black is generally not recommended as a major component of any home office color scheme.