Home Office: Space-Saving Solutions

how to fit an office at home

Fitting a home office into a small space can be challenging, but it's certainly possible with some creativity and smart solutions. Whether you live in a studio apartment, a small house, or just want to optimise your space, there are numerous ways to create a functional and stylish home office.

One approach is to utilise multi-purpose furniture and spaces. For example, you could repurpose a bedroom vanity, dining table, or kitchen counter as a workspace, or invest in a folding table that can be easily stored when not in use. Floating your sofa and placing a narrow console table behind it can also create an instant desk area.

Another strategy is to embrace compact and ergonomic designs. Slim desks, wall-mounted desks, and L-shaped layouts can maximise space efficiency. Opting for transparent or slim-profile furniture can also create a sense of openness and minimise visual clutter.

Additionally, consider the power of organisation and decoration. Ditching the clutter, embracing natural light, and adding personal touches or inspiration boards can make your workspace more inviting and productive.

Ultimately, creating a home office in a small space is about embracing creativity and finding solutions that work for your unique situation.

Characteristics Values
Location Living room, bedroom, dining room, hallway, closet, kitchen, basement, attic, sunroom, laundry room, nook, alcove, pass-through space
Furniture Desk, chair, shelves, storage, lamp, bed, sofa, table, room divider, side table, nightstand, bookcase, stool
Design Minimalist, colourful, ergonomic, gallery wall, double duty, floating shelves, wallpaper, mirrors, natural light, neutral colours


Declutter your space

A tidy workspace improves your mental health and productivity. Here are some tips to help you declutter your home office:

Identify how you use the home office

First, understand how you use your home office. Observe the items in your office for a week or two. Note down the items or take a picture of your desk at the end of each day. This will help you identify the items you need and those that can be kept away or removed.

Prioritise and place

Once you know how you use your office space, decide where everything should go. Keep the items you frequently use within easy reach. For example, if you use your printer regularly, keep it on a utility cart or in a drawer. If you rarely use it, consider selling it and going to an internet cafe instead to free up desk space.

Sell, donate, recycle

Over time, home offices accumulate items that don't belong there. Go through your office space and identify the odd ones out. Remove any items that don't work or need to be thrown away. Divide the remaining items into piles to move to a different room, donate to a charity shop, or sell online.

Deal with paper clutter

Paper is one of the biggest sources of clutter in a home office. Identify categories of documents that can be digitised, such as bills and receipts, and sort and group them by type. There are various apps available that can quickly scan documents and store them on your phone. You can also switch to note-taking apps such as Evernote, Google Docs, and Google Keep.

Create a system for paperwork

Create a system to separate and tackle paperwork daily. A simple way to do this is to create a three-tray system with "In", "Out", and "Work in Progress" trays. You can also add more trays, such as "On Hold" or "Archive", depending on your needs.

Manage cables

Visible wires can make your home office look cluttered. Deal with cords and cables by running them through raceways, hiding them under carpets, or taping them to your furniture. Label your wires to reduce the risk of unplugging the wrong ones. Use cable boxes, cable clips, cable sleeves, and under-desk trays to manage unruly wires.

Make use of your walls

If you have a small home office, make use of your wall space. Hang up your calendars, to-do lists, and a wall shelf for your stationery and supplies. You can also use a wall organiser or a pegboard that you can customise to your needs.


Embrace natural light

Natural light is essential for your health and productivity, so it's important to embrace it when setting up your home office.

Firstly, consider the position of your desk. While it might be tempting to place it directly under a window, this can cause your computer screen to be backlit, making it difficult to see what you're working on. Instead, opt for a layout where your desk is adjacent to the window. This will allow you to take advantage of the natural light without experiencing any glare or backlighting issues. If possible, try to position your desk as close to the window as you can to maximise the amount of natural light you receive throughout the day.

If your home office doesn't have easy access to a window, don't worry. You can still benefit from natural light by choosing the right window treatments. Shutters or blinds that block glare while still allowing in natural light are a great option, especially if your computer is near a window. Solar shades are another good choice, as they soften and reduce heat from the sun without compromising on light and view. You could also try a simple blind or a standing screen, which will help diffuse the sunlight shining through.

In addition to window treatments, you can also maximise natural light in your home office by incorporating reflective surfaces. For example, glass lighting fixtures can reflect illumination and bounce light around the room, brightening up the space. Similarly, glass shelves and mirrored back panels can help open up the space and reflect light, making the room feel more spacious and airy.

Finally, don't forget to consider the direction of the sunlight when setting up your workstation. Positioning your desk so that it faces north or south will ensure that sunlight doesn't throw a shadow at any point during the day. This will provide consistent lighting conditions throughout your workday, reducing glare and improving your overall work environment.

By following these tips and embracing natural light in your home office, you'll be able to boost your productivity, improve your physical and mental health, and create a bright and inviting workspace.


Make your bed

Making your bed is a simple task, and it can help you start your day on a productive note. Here is a step-by-step guide on how to make your bed, with tips on styling your bedding and keeping your sheets looking neat and fresh.

Firstly, clear your bed of anything that might get in the way. Take off the duvet, blanket, top sheet, and pillows, and set them aside on a clean surface. You can leave the fitted sheet on the bed if you are not replacing it.

Next, put on the fitted sheet. Tuck the elastic ends of the sheet around the four corners of the mattress, and smooth out any creases or wrinkles. Fitted sheets can be tricky to manage, so you may need a helping hand.

Now, add the top sheet and smooth it out. Spread the sheet over the bed, with the side featuring the large hem at the top, and ensure there is an equal amount of sheet hanging over both sides of the bed. If you have patterned sheets, put the patterned side face down so that you can see the pattern when the top of the sheet is folded back.

To make your bed look neat and luxurious, tuck in the top sheet to create hospital corners. Tuck the bottom end of the top sheet between the mattress and the box spring. Then, on one side, grab the top sheet about 16 inches (40.6 cm) from the foot of the bed, and fold it over the top of the mattress, forming a 45-degree angle. Tuck in any excess sheet, and repeat on the other side.

Place the duvet or comforter on top, and smooth it out. Set the top edge about 6 inches (15 cm) away from the edge of the top sheet at the head of the bed. If you prefer a tighter look, fold the edges of the duvet or comforter under the bed.

Fluff up your pillows and place them at the head of the bed. You can stack pillows on top of each other, or lean them vertically against the headboard to make your bed look bigger.

Finally, add any decorative pillows, quilts, or throw blankets to style your bed. Making your bed every morning can help you develop a positive habit and boost your happiness levels. Remember to wash your sheets every 1-2 weeks to keep them fresh and clean.

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Use multi-purpose furniture

Multi-purpose furniture is a great way to save space and add functionality to your home office. Here are some ideas to help you get started:

Murphy Beds and Sofas

Murphy beds are a fantastic option for a home office. They can be folded up against the wall when not in use, providing maximum floor space for your office setup. Consider a Murphy bed with an attached sofa, which can serve as a comfortable seating area for guests or a place to relax during breaks. This setup can be easily transformed into a bed when needed, providing a dual-purpose solution for your home office.

Mobile Furniture

Casters or wheels on your desk can make it mobile, allowing you to easily move it around. This is especially useful if you need to rearrange your office layout or create more space for other activities. Locking casters will ensure that your desk stays in place while you work, providing a stable work surface.

Dual-Purpose Study Units

A study unit with an attached space-saving bookshelf can be a great addition to your home office. Look for a design that includes a floating wooden desk with handleless drawers and open shelves. You can also find units with a tall bookshelf for extra storage. Additionally, some study units come with a wardrobe attached, creating a functional bedroom furniture ensemble.

Multi-Functional Wardrobes

Consider investing in a wardrobe with a built-in TV unit. This design saves space by combining two pieces of furniture into one sleek unit. Look for a wardrobe with a sliding door mechanism to save even more space. You can easily hide the TV when it's not in use, creating a neat and clutter-free design.

Folding Desks

If you're looking for a space-saving option, consider a folding desk. These desks can easily collapse, making them ideal for small spaces or portable office setups. You can fold them up and store them away when not in use, providing flexibility and maximizing your available space.


Assign a quiet corner

When creating a home office, it's important to find a quiet spot that allows you to focus without distractions. A quiet corner can be the perfect solution, offering a dedicated workspace that blends seamlessly into your home. Here are some tips to help you assign a quiet corner for your home office:

Choose the Right Location

Select a quiet area of your home that is away from high-traffic areas and potential distractions. This could be a corner in your living room, bedroom, or even a quiet spot in your kitchen. If you have a small apartment, consider using an under-utilised nook or corner, such as an empty hallway or an area behind your sofa.

Furniture and Layout

Opt for slim and functional furniture that can be tucked into your chosen corner. A narrow desk with storage options, such as floating shelves or a wall-mounted desk, can help maximise space. You can also consider a standing desk, which can be affixed to the wall and folded up when not in use. Choose a comfortable chair that fits the space neatly and maintains good ergonomics.

Colour and Decor

When it comes to colour, neutral and light shades can help create a calm and airy atmosphere. You can also add a pop of colour with accent walls or colourful furniture to make your workspace more inviting. Decorate your space with personal touches, such as plants, artwork, or inspirational items.

Lighting and Accessories

Ensure your corner office has adequate lighting, preferably with natural light. A simple desk lamp can also be a great addition. To manage cables, opt for extension cords that blend well with your decor. Noise-cancelling headphones can also be a worthwhile investment to create a peaceful working environment.

Storage Solutions

To keep your corner office organised and clutter-free, incorporate storage solutions such as shelves, baskets, or a small desk organiser. Utilise vertical space with floating shelves or wall-mounted storage units. If you're short on space, consider a portable or foldable office setup that can be easily stored away when not in use.

By following these tips, you can create a functional and inspiring home office in a quiet corner of your home, maximising your space and promoting a productive work environment.

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Frequently asked questions

If you have a small space, you can set up your home office in your living room, bedroom, dining room, or even a closet. If you have a dining table, you can dedicate one side for your office space. You can also repurpose your vanity or nightstand as a desk.

When setting up your home office, ensure that your monitor is at eye level to prevent neck strain. Your elbows should be at a 90-degree angle and close to your body, with your hands flat on the keyboard. Take breaks and change your position every 25 to 30 minutes.

You can decorate your home office with art, mirrors, or wallpaper to add a personal touch. Play with different colour palettes, textures, and lighting options to create a stylish and functional workspace.

To maximise space, consider using a slim desk or a folding table that can be stored away when not in use. Floating your sofa or bed can also create space for a narrow console table or desk behind it. Utilise vertical space by adding shelves or cabinets above your desk.

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