The COVID-19 pandemic has prompted a growth in people working from home, and the expectation is that this trend will continue post-pandemic as many businesses introduce hybrid working patterns for their employees.
Working from home comes with many benefits, however with many people now needing extra space within their homes to set up their workspace, often people are forced to work from their living rooms, bedrooms or dining rooms. We take a look at some of the other options out there that might be more suitable for setting up an office space within your home.
Using a Spare Bedroom as an office
Using a spare bedroom as an office space is one of the easiest and most cost-effective ways of creating an office within your home. No building work is required, meaning that most people can set an office up in less than a day – all that you need is a table, a desk chair and a spare bedroom. HappyBeds have some fantastic spare bedroom office design ideas that can help to get you started.
Using a spare bedroom as an office doesn’t have to limit the usage of the room, either. Introducing a sofa-bed to the room not only gives you extra space to sit in your new office, but also means that you can still utilise the room as a guest bedroom when needed.
There are, however, some disadvantages to using a spare bedroom as an office. Spare bedrooms are often spare because they are the smallest room in your house. Particularly in the UK, spare bedrooms are the ‘box-rooms’, used merely for storage. This means that creating an office space in a spare bedroom could be difficult and you could be limited by space. If you do manage to fit your office into the spare bedroom, you also have to consider the lack of space on a day-to-day basis. Most people like to work in large, bright and airy conditions – something that is difficult to achieve in a smaller spare bedroom.
Spare bedrooms are usually in the main space of the house, which means it can become difficult to separate your work and personal life on a day-to-day basis if people are passing by or making noise in other rooms in the house.
Using a Garden Room as an office
With the increase in people working from home, many have turned to installing garden rooms to use as an office space. Garden rooms can come in all shapes and sizes and the cost can differ massively depending on the specifications – some people make-do with a smaller, DIY shed and others go the full hog by installing a bespoke, multi-room space in their garden, complete with heating and plumbing.
The massive advantage to using a garden room as an office is that the room itself is not in the main house – meaning that work and personal life does not need to be intertwined. A garden room office can be a space that you can walk into in the morning, close off the outside world and focus on the working day. Having a room in the garden can also give you a much nice working environment than using a spare bedroom.
However, using a garden room as an office does not come without its negatives. A garden room is great if you have a large garden, but for those with smaller gardens it is usually unfeasible to build such a large structure without the usage of the garden itself being effected. The cost of a garden room that is genuinely usable in all weathers is also usually on the pricier side – garden rooms with electricity, plumbing and suitable insulation often costing £15,000+.
Using a garden room as an office can be a great option for those with larger budgets and larger gardens, but it isn’t for everyone.
Using a Conservatory as an office
A conservatory can be a great place to create a functional home office space, and if the conservatory is already in situ it doesn’t cost much to transform the space.
Using a conservatory as a home office has the benefits of both options above – the room is usually closest to the garden, with the glass walls giving you a nice working environment, and if the space is already in situ you are not having to find extra space on your land to house your office. Conservatories are also usually a good size for an office, with the most common conservatory being approximately 3X3m. This is an ideal amount of space to house a desk, shelving and enough space not to feel cramped within the room.
The most common problem with using a conservatory as a home office is the temperature extremes that come in the hot summer and cold winter. The polycarbonate or glass panels in a traditional conservatory cause heat to enter or leave the room much quicker than other rooms in the house, meaning that the room is either too hot or too cold – not a great environment if you are trying to work in one.
However, there are solutions to this. Green Space UK offer a complete panel replacement – taking out the existing polycarbonate or glass panels and replacing them with insulated aluminium panels. The Green Space panels help to limit the temperature transfer, meaning that the room is much cooler in the summer and much warmer in the winter. The solid panels have a gloss under-side, meaning that the room is still light and airy - the perfect environment for a home office in the conservatory. All of the work takes less than a day, causing minimum hassle, mess or fuss.
If you would like to find out how Green Space UK can help you to convert your conservatory into a home office – contact us today for a free, no-obligation quotation to go through your options.
Written by Lewis Treleaven, 17th June 2021