Whether you telecommute as a full-time employee, operate your own business from home or engage in creative hobbies like web design, writing or painting at home, make sure that you build out your home office the right way. After all, you could easily spend 20 to 40 or more hours a week in your home office. Lack one key component and you could find yourself struggling to focus on your work. Lighten up your day Choose a room in your house that has at least one large window for your home office. Install quality fluorescent or LED lights. Hang light weight blinds at the window, instead of heavy drapes, to allow plenty of natural light to stream into your office. You’ll see better and feel better too. Home office ergonomics Go for an adjustable chair and a desk with a pull-out keyboard tray. While you’re shopping for home office furniture, check to see that the chair you plan on buying is comfortable and aligns well with the desk that you want. Proper desk and chair heights could help you to avoid back and neck discomfort, especially on days when you log lots of hours. Backup computer resources You won’t have to worry about this if your employer gives you an office computer or laptop. But, if you’re an independent contractor or entrepreneur who works from home, you’ll want access to a backup computer should your regular PC go on the blink. A tablet with office software applications, an extra laptop or a low cost desktop can do the trick. Easy filing space There may be times when you need to keep printed documents. For example, you might need to keep printed receipts for tax purposes and printed copies of signed client contracts. Expandable file folders save space. Metal six foot tall filing cabinets can be placed behind your home office door. Another option is to store paper documents in plastic storage bins. The best option depends on how long you need to keep the documents and the volume of printed materials you’ll keep. Great Wi-Fi You’ll get more done faster if you have great Wi-Fi. Internet and computer download speeds should be fast enough to not cause you to have to wait several seconds or a minute or longer before a web page pops up or a Word document opens. As a tip, you can speed up download times by deleting unnecessary files, removing unused and unneeded applications off your computer, turning off pop-up ads, installing good Internet security and anti-virus software and keeping your computer battery in good condition. Spice up your home office Place a few plants in your home office to spruce up the space. Family pictures, posters with motivational quotes on them and artistic gadgets and knick knacks also work well. Eliminate distractions to stay engaged in your work. Avoid checking email throughout the day, answering your cell phone and watching television. Try it and see if your production doesn’t improve.
Today’s smart homes feature pocket offices or small areas specially designed to accommodate a laptop and mobile device charging station. Many kitchen designs incorporate a workspace with a wall-mounted touchpad to control household activity from drawing a bath to scheduling dishwasher and laundry appliance operations for off-peak times when low electricity rates apply.
Glorious Kitchens And Grand Baths
Home buyers demand grand, distinctive spaces with a heightened interest in master bathrooms fitted with jumbo showers with body sprays, rain heads, steam cabinets and touchscreen technology to control lighting, music, water pressure as well as room and water temperature.
Kitchens that celebrate eye-catching islands with digitally controlled cooktops, app-controlled appliances, built-in beverage centers and other smart home technology elements that showcase the kitchen’s role as family gathering place are an integral element in today’s home designs.
Elegant Electronic Wine Rooms
Once found only in the catacombs of the dwellings of the very rich, in-home, digitally controlled wine rooms gain popularity in new construction plans. Often tucked under a grand stairway or as a retreat off the main dining room, these private “man caves” are digitally equipped with state-of-the-art sound systems, alarm systems, entertainment centers, soundproofing, ventilation systems that by-pass the main house system, and humidity, moisture and temperature storage for vintage wines, liquors and fine cigars.
Owners can relax and savor a cigar without offending others in the household or draw guests an icy cold brew or hot beverage from built-in keg taps or beverage brewers.
Built-in wine rooms or owner retreats, replace the home office or den as a place of solitude to escape the flurry of household activity and the demands of the outside world.
Home Entertainment Theaters Or Media Rooms
Space once used for the “family room” or den in older construction has a new purpose as defined by today’s building trends. The home entertainment theater, also known as the media room, provides a designated space for creating a true cinematic experience complete with drop-from-the-ceiling viewing screens, the finest in surround sound, mood lighting, and room temperature controlled with just a flick of a switch on your favorite mobile device.
The growing trend in physical fitness and maintaining a healthy lifestyle has given rise to the popularity of incorporating a home gym or physical fitness room into building design plans. In upscale designs, this area is often designed as a complete “mini-suite” equipped with a full bath, sauna, steam room and hot tub or physical therapy tub with all room functions controlled by an app activated by your smartphone.
Design features may include an infinity lap pool, digital scales, and cardiovascular monitoring with a recording feature to keep track of your physical fitness goals and progress. If you include different types of exercise equipment such as a tread climber, elliptical machine, exercise bike or stair master with digital controls, smart home technology allows you to synchronize and record the time spent daily on each activity as well as the number of calories burned in total.
Many smart homes include intercom and visually invisible camera interaction between rooms. Now you can get a full workout while monitoring that the baby is sleeping soundly, and the rest of the household is running smoothly.
With a smart home, you are only limited by your imagination. If there is a function in your home that operates electronically, your electrician or technology consultant, working with your builder, can incorporate it into your smart home design.
With the recent growth in telecommuting, home offices are also becoming a necessity rather than a luxury. Home buyers are looking for a place where they can work, a place to pay bills or simply surf the net. Investing in a home office will help you now and may pay off later. Have you always dreamed of a home office? Do you have an office that is overrun with papers? A home office is usually the place where junk finds its home. Getting that room into a place where organization is king can be easier than you think. Implementing an organizational system that has you working in peace with everything at your fingertips is easy if you follow these simple tips. 1. Choose the space. Think of all the things that you'll need to work comfortably in your home office. You want to make sure the space will allow for your desk and chair and anything else you will need in your office. 2. Organize your space. Part of organizing means decluttering. If you have three staplers, six pairs of scissors you will need to get rid of anything extra. Clutter is very distracting and reduces efficiency. Identify a space for all the necessities. You need to identify a place for the printer, file cabinet, reference books and supplies. 3. Schedule the date and time for your office organization. Set aside a specific time and date to plan your space. If you have lots of files and file cabinets, make a decision on how much you want to get done in the initial session. You may need to plan several dates to complete the whole task. 4. Reorganize. Clean and organize your office at the end of each day. It will only take a few minutes and keep you on track to staying organized. Plan on reorganizing your office every three months or so. By planning your home office space and getting it organized you'll enjoy it more. Your work will be better, you'll appreciate being at home, and you'll have the perfect place to work--your home. Now focus on success!