Friday, March 22, 2013

Four Ways to Build or Remodel to Create a Fantastic Home Office

Home Office?  You Deserve to Make It Amazing



Work life is changing, and telecommuting is becoming more common.  Or maybe you are in business for yourself and have the luxury of working from your home all or most of the time.  Think of the money you would have spent on an office space away from home to make it comfy or efficient.  Why shouldn't you spend that or more on yourself to create a fantastic workspace environment.  After all, you may be spending 6, 8, 10 or more hours per day in that office. 

There are three or four basic approaches to setting up a home office.  Here are some of the pros and cons of each option

A Room Addition as a Home Office

Add on is the most expensive, but allows you to optimize the space in every possible way.  This approach also creates a clear write off (not intended as tax advice), and becomes an asset if you sell.  When adding this room, you may want to go so far as to add a wet bar or mini kitchen, and even an additional bathroom if you want to give yourself a "walled off" experience.  Many books on working from home recommend that you dress for work and go to your office space, just like if you were going out to the office.  This helps to separate your home life from your business life.

When building a room from scratch you have the advantage of wiring it for an office.  Of course our living rooms often need almost as much internet and computer wiring as an office today.  Give yourself tons of outlets and options for electrical hook ups, cable, computer, internet, speakers, and phone.  Ironically, phone may be the one you now need the least.  


Lighting is key.  Make sure the office is well lit.  We all love to have windows with natural light in an office setting.  Be sure you are taking into consideration where you will be looking into your computer screen.  Otherwise you may either be looking over the screen into direct sunlight or direct sunlight might be behind you interfering with the quality of your view.  

Some may choose to use an aluminum sun room for the office addition.  Keep in mind the potential cost to heat and cool such a room.  The money you save on construction may be eaten up by poor insulation.  

Don't box yourself in to only one option for desk and chair placements.  If you like to work on a laptop, where will you do that?  At a desk or in your Lazy Boy?  Design in options for all the furniture so you don't get bored.

We can help.  Send an email to UniqueProperties1@Verizon.net and tell us your plans.  We'll get right back to you. Or call 214-533-0716

Remodel and Entire Room into an Office

Maybe you have a spare bedroom or large attic space that can be converted.  This will be less expensive than the room addition, but will be more limiting in how you can design it.  Almost all of the considerations above will apply.  You will kick yourself if you skimp on pre wiring and pre plumbing the room.  An existing room is unlikely to have adequate or appropriate lighting.  Remember you are going to spend most of your day here.  Don't have a dingy environment or one that strains your eyes.

Remodel Your Garage into and Office

Some folks have turned their garages into fantastic offices.  The big limitation here is usually outdoor natural lighting.  Garages are rarely built with much in the way of windows, and also are not the easiest to add windows that will give great views or lighting.  The trash section on the side of the house isn't an inspiring place to stare at all day.  

There are ways to camouflage such areas that may at least beautify the view.  But getting much sunlight may still be an issue.  The good thing is that you can usually add all that pre wire at a much lower cost than in an attic or back bedroom.  You generally will end up with a far bigger space than you would have otherwise.  

Obviously, there are two big issues.  Temperature control and loss of your garage.  The space is large and very hard to insulate, so heating is going to be an issue.  AC may be an even bigger issue.  In some neighborhoods or towns, they frown on garage conversions, thinking that they don't want your cars hogging all the parking.  Make sure you know what the rules are in your community.

An Office Nook


Robinsons Bay Residence traditional home office
With the surge of mobile devices and laptops, the home office doesn't have to be that big.  And depending on the kind of work you do, you may not need all that cabling and internet wiring.    You might want to consider the office nook, which has become a very popular feature. Often the office nook will be located off the kitchen or living room, but you may even find it in a corner of the bedroom, in the attic, or in a part of the garage.

In some houses the office nook may act as a home command center, homework station, traditional office, or all three. Many people are installing office nooks in closets or dormers, but those who are building a new house may designate a special space for this purpose.



Here is a lovely example of how this trend might be incorporated into a traditional style home. If you want gorgeous remodeling in Dallas, give us a call. 214-533-0716


If you liked this article you might also like: 
How to Finance your Remodel with the Same Monthly Payments with North Dallas Home Value Increase


No comments:

Post a Comment