In most families, home offices play a wide variety of roles. If you work from home then it’s your 9-to-5 place of business; for others, it's simply a place to pay bills or sort mail. For kids, it's a homework spot or a place to play. Home office ideas are easy to come by — think library, sitting room or a place to nap. Whatever your preference, read these tips before you browse through home office design ideas to ensure you’re making the most of yours:
Storage should be top priority in all home office designs. With so many papers, books and supplies to store, be sure to accommodate it all with shelves, drawers and cabinets. A smart office wall design or storage system can also do wonders in keeping you organized. Once you've got all of that figured out, find a desk that's stocked with everything you need: plenty of surface space, deep drawers and a high-quality material. Finally, take the time to personalize your workspace with plenty of photographs and interesting knickknacks; check out lots of home office decorating ideas to help inspire your overall look or theme.
What’s the best layout for my home office design?
Your home office layout should serve your workflow and overall creative process. Ideally, this means home offices get their own dedicated room, but if space is limited they can be paired with a guest room or added into the nook of any bedroom, living room or kitchen. There are many options, so determine what's best for you and your family. Regardless of where you set up shop, place crucial electronics and equipment within easy reach; computer monitors should be positioned so there is no glare, and lamps should be placed strategically around the entire room so there is as much light as possible.
Your work area should also be ergonomically sound. Given that you may spend countless hours in your desk chair, it should have a comfortable cushion, lumbar support and the ability to swivel and roll so you can easily reach items instead of straining for them. Your chair should also have adjustable arm rests that allow for your shoulders to stay relaxed and elbows bent at 90 degrees. As for your keyboard, you want the “B” key be directly centered in front of you. Don’t worry about having to go with a frumpy, commercial-looking office chair either; plenty of great home office ideas use unique dining or accent chairs for an updated look.
Make sure to give yourself a view. If you have a window in your space, set up your desk so you can look out of it. If not, put up an inspiring gallery wall or a unique wall hanging to set your gaze on when taking breaks. If you’ll be having clients in your home office, make sure there are ample (and comfortable!) seating options that are conducive to productive meetings.
How do I add storage to my home office?
Home office organization is key, especially with all the bills, mail and statements you receive and keep throughout the year. The best way to store your papers is by investing in a filing cabinet. A rolling cabinet can help with convenience, or splurge on a more permanent, lockable one if you have a lot of sensitive documents. Be sure to label and color code so that everything is easy to find. With shelves and cabinets, built-ins are your best options. Built-in shelves are an elegant way to store your book collection while drawers with tray organizers keep track of staples like pens, pencils, highlighters, tape and calculators.
How do I choose the right desk for my home office design?
When picking out your desk (or desks, for a large family space), be sure to consider its overall function. If this is your only office, it’s important to select a sturdy desk that can contain all your work documents in one place; it should look professional and be double-sided so you can hold meetings. To prevent any work/home mix-ups, have a separate desk for the rest of the family to use, and ensure your workspace is off limits. If your kids use the room as a homework spot, try a two-person desk or even an extended built-in counter where several can sit at one time. If you primarily use the space for odds and ends, a smaller, fashionable secretary desk might do the trick, as long as you have additional storage options.
How do I decorate my home office?
When looking for home office decorating ideas, always think in terms of inspiration; your work area should be functional but also reflective of the things that motivate you. While home offices are conventionally formal spaces, you can definitely branch out with your decor. If you're looking for office wall colors, find a paint that energizes you or go with patterns or stripes for variation. Globes, maps and clocks are always go-to pieces, as are table lamps and vases.
To give your work area a personalized touch, bring in framed family photographs and travel souvenirs you've picked up along the way. For those must-have accessories, like pencil cups, paper trays and magazine holders, try using bright, vibrant patterns to add a pop of color or even novelty pieces that will make you smile every time you look at them. Bulletin boards, chalkboards or whiteboards are also great home office ideas; they're perfect for reminders and can also be used to hold pictures or artwork.
Whether you want inspiration for planning a home office renovation or are building a designer home office from scratch, Houzz has 251,641 images from the best designers, decorators, and architects in the country, including Johnston Home Interior Design and Jim Maliksi and Associates. Look through home office pictures in different colors and styles and when you find a home office design that inspires you, save it to an Ideabook or contact the Pro who made it happen to see what kind of design ideas they have for your home. Explore the beautiful home office photo gallery and find out exactly why Houzz is the best experience for home renovation and design.