Having moved 4 times in 2 years as well as sacrificing space for the location (downtown Vancouver rent is no joke), I’ve had to set up many home offices in different homes, and I’ve helped one of my clients set their home office up as well, and I’d like to share that expertise with you.
The KEY element to using space effectively in an home office (or for that matter, anything else) is to use the vertical space as well as the horizontal space. Think 3D more, and try to make the best of the vertical height and leverage it.
- A desk with a tall bookshelf attached to it as well as a drawer. The bottom drawer has a metal rail installed in it to convert it into a mini filing cabinet. I don’t have space for a whole filing cabinet nor the need for it so this works well.
The tall shelf serves to store all my books, DVDs, CDs, etc. Beaneath the desk board, there are 2 shelves that hold some more documents/printer paper/sub-woofer/more books.
- To provide direct lighting to my desk, which I absolutely need at night, I use a shelf-clipping light fixture instead of a desk-top light, to save space on my desktop.
- To store my documents and letters as well as other items that I need to pay attention to sooner or later, I use a pinboard as well as 3 document sleeves attached to my wall. It’s better than having those inbox/outbox trays on my desk, because, once again, it saves space, and uses the surface of a vertical wall instead of a horizontal plane on my desk.
- My printer does not sit on my desk. It sits in a wall-mounted shelf, as do my speakers. My speakers came with metal stands for putting on the desk surface but I chose to install it on the walls with screws.
- To be able to run multiple equipments without running long wires, use multi-plug power bars. Most office equipment (laptop, printer, light, speakers, headphones, external hard-drive) does not consume too many amperes of electricity, so it won’t overload the circuit breaker or cause fire, which is contrary to what some people are afraid of. It’s the heaters, stoves, ovens as well as vacumm cleaners that take up a lot of amperes and should be used with caution when using with other items plugged in.
So with these little tricks, I’ve turned a corner of my bedroom into a very practical home office space, and I’m getting great use out of it. When I’m making more dough I’ll be able to move into a place with a spare den or a room for an office, but until then I need to be frugal with space.