At work, at home

Thanks to the pandemic, a dedicated office space in your house has become a necessity

At work, at home

At ease: Long hours of work demand a comfortable desk and seat, besides proper lighting

Shristi Nangalia

WITH the spread of coronavirus, all public and institutional places, including offices, have been shut until further notice. Working from home has become the new normal. With people being pushed indoors, the real estate industry is anticipating a spike in the demand of residences with dedicated home offices. Many Indian companies are reconsidering investment in commercial real estate as they look forward to effectuate work from home for their workforce on a long-term basis. Real estate developers and product manufacturers, too, are gearing up to provide suitable solutions for setting up of home offices.

According to a recent research by Anarock, financially strong and organised residential real estate players are likely to occupy 75-80 per cent market share, with a demand for townships to rise in the coming years. The work from home concept may become the next fulcrum for home-buying decisions, and there will be a rising need for functional and flexible homes with an ability to convert rooms into workspaces. Architects, interior designers and product designers are, simultaneously, filling the gaps by designing prefab outdoor sheds for backyard offices, studio room layouts for interiors and compact, agile workstations that can be installed at multiple spots across the house.

For homeowners, who have enough space to model a dedicated office space, get prepared for transition in terms of productivity and organisation. Here are some tips to keep in mind when designing your home office:

Finding the right spot

Depending upon the nature of work and space required, allocate an area in your house for work office. For those who can do with just a work desk and a chair, the space under the staircase, dead end of a hallway or a nook in the living of family room might be perfect to install your workstation. For those who need a more elaborate home office, find a place where you can integrate a secluded cabin or room. It can be by your terrace or balcony, in the backyard, or even the garage. Natural lighting and ventilation are a plus!

Go for adjustable desks

Long hours of work demand a comfortable desk and seat. A height-adjustable desk integrated with storage and a basic ergonomic office chair is generally fit for all home offices. Portable standing desk is also a convenient alternative. Make sure that both the standing and sitting positions of your desk don’t keep your neck or shoulders hunched over as you work. When picking the furniture, keep in mind extra seats for visiting colleagues or guests too. Besides your local manufacturers, a few trusted manufactures of office furniture are IKEA, AFC, Featherlite, Godrej Interio, Herman Miller, etc. Many DIY options are also available at online stores like Amazon, PepperFry, HomeTown and Home Centre.

Balance light & temperature

To manage tasks efficiently and increase wellbeing, lighting and temperature control are top considerations in structuring a home office. Maintaining the right balance of light and temperature induces better concentration, thereby boosting productivity.

Add storage space

Adequate storage in a workspace is a must. Not just to keep things organised and tidy, storage can be used to increase the aesthetic quality of the space too. Choose from free-standing cupboards to wall hung cabinets, designer open shelves to glass shelves… as per the décor you wish to actuate and the things you want to accommodate.

Make the space engrossing

Punching a few accentuating touches like a lively wallpaper, framed quotations or art, small planters, designer lamps, etc. can not only add personality and character to your home office, but also keep you focused and intrigued. Moreover, it helps you switch between home and work mode seamlessly.

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