Readers Digest
Magazine subscription Podcast
HomeMoneyProperty

Mini home office: How to create a great tiny workspace

BY Ned Browne

14th Sep 2022 Property

Mini home office: How to create a great tiny workspace

Working from home in a small space can be really challenging. Here’s our advice for making the most of a mini home office

The race for space was one of the legacies of the pandemic. Places to work became coveted. According to the Office for National Statistics, almost half of working adults were working from home at times during the pandemic. And, of those, 8 in 10 said they planned to "hybrid work" in the future.

"The race for space was one of the legacies of the pandemic"

No wonder properties with office rooms are still selling for a premium. Here’s how to create your own miniature home office.  

Creating a workstation 

If you don’t have a spare room, don’t think you can’t have a workstation.  

You don't need a spare room to create a workstation

You don't need a spare room to create your workstation

During the pandemic, some people created workspaces in unused shower rooms and understairs cupboards. Others sub-divided or reconfigured existing rooms. Part bedroom, part office—why not? 

Power outlets

The first thing you need is lots of power outlets. Remember, you could need power for a fan, a mobile, a laptop, a printer, a router and a desk lamp.  

If adding new sockets isn’t in your budget, you can always replace an existing socket with one that incorporates USB A or C sockets. This effectively creates four power outlets from one double socket. 

Wi-Fi connection

Test the Wi-Fi before committing to an area for your home office. You may have to relocate your router or buy a Wi-Fi extender. Alternatively, you may find that you can hotspot from your mobile, especially if you have access to 5G and a decent data package.  

Woman on a video call

Make sure you have stable Wi-Fi and a good webcam for those Zoom meetings

Also, get decent speakers and update your webcam. There’s nothing more unprofessional than someone’s inability to communicate properly when they’re working from home.  

Speaking of which, if there are kids in the house, you might need a lock on the door. Or at least a "Do Not Disturb" sign! 

Comfort is key 

If you’re going to sit at your desk for hours on end, it’s vital that you have a comfy, supportive seat and that you’re not over reaching. Raise or lower the height of your desk accordingly.  

Buy a fan too, ideally in winter or spring, when you’ll still be able to track one down.  

"You don’t necessarily need to buy a desk. You could repurpose an existing table [or] create a desk space from MDF"

Of course, you don’t necessarily need to buy a desk. You could repurpose an existing table or, if you have an alcove, install brackets on each side and create a desk space from MDF. If you’re feeling more ambitious, putting up a stud wall to create an alcove is also pretty straight forward. 

Lighting 

If your workspace area has a window, great—unless, that is, you find yourself staring out of it instead of cracking on with your work.  

Woman staring out of window

Don't get too distracted by the view!

You’ll need a decent blind too, to countenance the glare on computer screens (and the risk of daydreaming). If you don't have a window, think carefully about lighting. You don't want it too bright, nor too dark. 

Storage and shelving 

Ideally your desk will be free from clutter. Keep your stapler and other detritus in a draw and your paperwork in box files or similar on the shelves. You will need shelving, too. Use the high up shelves for soon-to-be-archived work.

Pictures and plants 

If you spend hour after hour in one space, make sure it’s a beautiful place. Surround yourself with pictures and plants and redecorate if necessary.

Home office with plants

Decorate your space with houseplants and photos

At the end of every workday, clean your desk and work space. It will make the following workday so much more pleasant. 

Final thoughts 

Creating a home office will not only increase the functionality of your home, it will also add value. You don’t have to spend much money to make this a reality. It’s a no-brainer! 

Keep up with the top stories from Reader's Digest by subscribing to our weekly newsletter

*This post contains affiliate links, so we may earn a small commission when you make a purchase through links on our site at no additional cost to you.

 

Loading up next...
Stories by email|Subscription
Readers Digest

Launched in 1922, Reader's Digest has built 100 years of trust with a loyal audience and has become the largest circulating magazine in the world

Readers Digest
Reader’s Digest is a member of the Independent Press Standards Organisation (which regulates the UK’s magazine and newspaper industry). We abide by the Editors’ Code of Practice and are committed to upholding the highest standards of journalism. If you think that we have not met those standards, please contact 0203 289 0940. If we are unable to resolve your complaint, or if you would like more information about IPSO or the Editors’ Code, contact IPSO on 0300 123 2220 or visit ipso.co.uk