Maintaining a home
How to set up your home office for the long term
01 November 2021
If you’re sick of your makeshift home office, it may be time to evolve your space into a more long-term set up. There are a few things to keep in mind that’ll help set you up for success.
Create a productive environment
Making your space conducive to productivity will help you be your best self while working. Sharing the dining table with your kids or trying to take work calls from your backyard simply won’t work for long.
Do you have a rarely used room in your house? Maybe a guest room, garage, or space under your staircase? If so, see if you can repurpose it to become your permanent home office. Be sure to remove any clutter, have a suitable work surface, consider privacy and have your required tools of trade easily accessible.
Prioritise safety and comfort
Working from an uncomfortable desk (or couch) may be okay for a short period. But if you’re working from home on an ongoing basis, you’ll need to prioritise ergonomics, comfort and safety. There are a few ways to do this:
- Manage your cables to eliminate trip hazards.
- Adjust your work surface, monitor and chair to be the appropriate height for you.
- Invest in an ergonomic chair, sit-and-stand desk, or any other equipment that will elevate your comfort. Even a footstool or cushions if this helps you remain comfortable while you’re working.
- Ensure your work area receives good natural light, as this helps to reduce headaches and eyestrain.
- Mental wellbeing is also important so consider making sure your workspace makes you ‘feel good’. It could be some family photos or positive quotes on a wall or even as simple as a nice view out your window.
Strike a work life balance
While you don’t have a physical separation between your home and your office, you should still strive to create a balance between your professional and personal spaces.
This might mean strictly working within normal business hours, making sure to take a proper lunch break, or resisting the temptation to watch YouTube videos while on the clock. Some people even find taking a quick walk on their lunch break helps with that work life balance, not to mention the health benefits.
If you already have insurance and you’re going to be working from home for the foreseeable future, it might be a good idea to look at adjusting your insurances. If you have home and content insurance, does your policy cover specific high-value items like laptops? Or depending on your individual circumstances, does your employer’s business insurance extend to equipment outside of the office?
Stay on top of what your insurance does and does not cover, or if you need to upgrade, how you might do that, so you can avoid nasty surprises at claim time.
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