Creative Solutions To Finding Space For Your New Home Office
Have you been trying to figure out how to squeeze a new home office into an already cozy living area? You’ve tried sharing the kitchen table, and it’s a constant battle between your work, the kids, meals, and other projects. Maybe it’s time to take a step back and do a little out-of-the-box thinking. Here are two ways to find home office space you probably hadn’t thought of.
In the western U.S., roughly 50% of homes have more than one level. Farther east, that number goes up to 80%. And of those that are only one level, many have space that could be converted into a loft.
If you have an existing, traditional stair case, it occupies a space of at least 30 and as much as 60 square feet. What if you could capture a chunk of that that’s the perfect size for a trendy or classic desk? First, take a look at some ideas for staircases for small spaces, because the objective is to shrink the amount of space that’s being taken up by the stairs. For the most part, this involves changing the stair configuration from the old-fashioned closed-in, straight, square, and stodgy look to something that’s more free form and open.
The image above show how space that used to be a difficult to use under-stairway storage area is now available for a workspace table or desk. So you not only gain space for your home office, you’ve really updated the look of your home.
What if you don’t have an upstairs or basement? If you have a vaulted ceiling, consider adding a cozy loft. Again, finding staircase ideas that don’t take up a lot of space is critical, because you want to gain more in the new loft that you lose to the new stairs. Below is an outstanding example of how a loft transforms a huge vaulted ceiling into more usable space.
If you don’t have a vaulted ceiling, there’s still a similar option. Take a peek in your attic and see what kind of space is up there. Very often, with a little creative thinking, a modest getaway can be sculpted out around the existing roof framing.
The Closet Office Option
One of the reasons “the cube” became so popular is that it naturally encourages you to stay focused and productive. If your home office is a shared-function space, it’s challenging to accomplish that. Even worse, if your home office is just a roll-top desk and much of what you need is in an adjacent closet or even another room, productivity suffers.
While it may be impractical to claim an entire room for your home office, there are creative alternatives. I’ve claimed the by-pass door closet in a spare bedroom, essentially creating my own cube. The ends house printers and storage, and there are shelves both on the sides and above. The desk fits completely inside so I can close it off out of sight when I’m not working. Again, the key is to be open to solutions you may have been overlooking.