Guest blog post by Alice Robertson, Tidy Home (http://tidyhome.info/)
For many of us, our home is more than just a place where we relax, sleep and eat. If it’s also where you plan to work, you probably need a dedicated home office. Even if you have a small space and a limited budget, everyone has nooks and crannies that can work. You just have to be creative about design and use these money-saving tips to make it happen.
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Tip # 1 – You Need a Plan
If you don’t have a whole room for a home office, there are plenty of other options. You can convert a closet, use a landing at the top of the stairs, or even a nook within an unused part of a room. Once you have the space picked out, come up with a plan for furnishing and supplies, layout, storage and decor ideas. Writing it all out will help you get a feel for costs so you can stay on budget. This will also make sure you get everything you need without spending money on anything unnecessary that would just take up space.
If you don’t have space inside your home for a workspace, don’t fret — you can easily take things outside! Even if you don’t have space in your garage for an office, you can opt for a smaller prefab steel building that will provide you with enough space to get everything up and running. Once you have the structure in place, all you have to do is provide the electricity and equipment — then you’re all set to get things rolling.
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Tip # 2 – Shop Smart for Furnishings
Planning is important when it comes to purchases too. Local retailers may have what you need, but larger stores like Bed, Bath & Beyond are likely to have better deals, both online and in-store. Alternatively, instead of buying everything new, you may also want to repurpose what you can from another room of your home or from consignment stores.
Your desk will take up the most space in your home office, so your number one goal is to keep it small and functional. Some of the best desks for small offices include wall-mounted options, floating desks, and ones with built-in storage.
Tip # 3 – Make Organization a Top Priority
A small workspace can get cluttered fast if you don’t set up a good organization system. Using walls for storage is an efficient use of space when square footage is at a premium. Search for an inexpensive wall shelving unit, or install floating shelves to house necessities along with decorative touches. Adding stylish baskets to shelves is another affordable way to keep unsightly things in their place.
Another savings tip is to stock up on office supplies whenever they’re on sale. The blogger Busy Budgeter recommends finding out when stores have special promotions and grabbing necessities then. Making sure you have extra storage, even in a small space, is crucial to being able to take advantage of these deals.
You also want a plan for keeping cords and electronics under control. Without a cord management system that keeps them neat and out of sight, electronic clutter can easily detract from the productive feel you’re going for, especially in a small space.
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Tip # 4 – Style Your Office With Functional Decor
When you’re on a budget, you want your decorating dime to stretch as much as possible. These are a few of the top decor ideas that are both functional and high impact:
- Use paint to establish your look – Painting is one of the most affordable ways to decorate, and the right color forms the backdrop you want to create in your space.
- Bring out your personality with office accessories – You don’t need designer furniture to have a room that’s high on style. Instead, spend just a little on affordable office accessories that inspire you, such as these folders featured on Elle Decor.
- Optimize lighting – Make use of natural light as much as possible. Adding mirrors can make a room feel larger and reflect light at the same time. Having the right lamps is also essential to giving your room a warm feel and helping you stay productive.
The great thing about setting up your home office is that you don’t have to settle for boring decor. Not to mention, when you plan ahead and shop smart, you can get the style you want on a budget. From planning and budgeting to settling in, these money-saving tips will help you create the perfect home office in any space.