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Working from home is a rapidly expanding career field. Marketing, clerical work, administrative duties and e-commerce sales are just some of the home employment opportunities. Many people are choosing to work from home (full or part time) in order to skip the commute, reduce stress, enjoy flexible scheduling, eliminate the need for child care, increase production, lower costs and avoid office distractions. But where can you find the square footage to create the home-office you need? If the main floor of your home is already crowded, look to that subterranean space currently filled with exposed beams, electrical wires and duct work. The basement may be the perfect location for your home office allowing you a larger space than you might find on the upper floor and providing the quiet and privacy you need for your work. With a little careful planning, you can create a comfortable, efficient home office in your basement.
When designing your basement home office, there are steps that will streamline the process and ensure you create the space you need and desire.
Inspect the space: Examine the basement walls and ceiling for leaks, mold and mildew. Do you need to do some waterproofing before beginning the project? Will a dehumidifier be necessary? Make sure you have sufficient insulation to be warm and cozy in the cold winter months. Do you have an egress window to act as an emergency exit?
Determine what you require: Do you need a desk or a table? Will you install a computer and printer? Will you need storage for files, books or marketing material? Do you want a filing cabinet, shelves or both? Will a seating area for clients, guests, or customers be required?
Plan the layout: Measure the available space. Choose and purchase décor and furnishings. Consider space saving items such as a murphy table, fold away desk and/or storage options with a minimal footprint. Sketch a floor plan incorporating your furniture and taking into account good work flow. Use chalk to draw your plan on the basement floor. Walk through the layout making changes you deem necessary.
Determine electrical needs: Make sure you plan for proper electrical and network access. How many sockets do you need and where should they be placed? Can you get Wi-Fi signals directly from your router? Do you need a signal booster to extend the signal to your basement or will you install a “wired” internet connection?
Consider the entrance: If your work does not require meetings with clients/customers, the existing entrance is likely sufficient. If meetings will occur, it’s best to create an entrance separate from that used by family members.
Include storage space: Consider custom built storage units to make the best use of available space and assist in creating an organized and aesthetically pleasing office. Build more storage than you think you need! How about cubby style wall units with drawers, doors, baskets and shelves?
Optimize lighting: Let in as much natural light as possible. Layer your lighting fixtures; a good overhead light, a desk lamp, adjustable task lighting and under-cabinet fixtures.
Ponder soundproofing: Plan your basement office to be a distance from noisy zones such as the play area or media room. Add foam insulation to common walls to dampen sound.
Decide upon extras: Do you need to construct a small bathroom nearby? Would a kitchenette or coffee area be useful? Do you need a whiteboard, magnetic and/or cork board? What extras would make your office more efficient and comfortable?
Find a certified contractor: Look for a contractor who specializes in basement finishing and has built home offices. Talk to him about your ideas and your overall vision for the space. He’ll have tips to enhance the look and feel of the room and will help you build a basement office uniquely suited to your needs.
Whether you spend an hour or two at home with paper work or you work full time from home, there are ways to create a comfortable, efficient and elegant basement home office. When you are ready to create the basement office of your dreams, call the Calgary basement experts, Econo Basements at (403) 768-0256 or email at email@example.com. We have the experience, knowledge and proficiency to help you achieve the office you desire.