When people first started working from home their home office was usually a spot on the end of the dining room table. Or if they had a laptop, maybe it was on the most comfy seat in the living room. However, the home office has now evolved to become a dedicated space more suited to the user’s needs. Where you put your home office will depend a lot on your lifestyle and stage of life as well as on what you use the office for.
If you have children at home that need to be supervised, your home office will need to be somewhere in the home from whence you can see them and tend to their needs, rather than a room you can go into and shut the door. A corner of the family room would be a good place. Here you can set up your desk and have some kind of storage. You may also want a box of toys to distract the children with so you can get on with what you are doing.
If your children are at the stage where they can amuse themselves or are going to school, you can still have your home office in the corner of the living room as there will be no distractions through the day. However, if you have a spare room you might consider converting it to a real office space, especially if you need to use it a lot. You can have a space that is all your own and be sure that there will be no disturbances.
If your children are grown up or if you have no children, the home office can be anywhere you want it to be. You might like to have an outside garden shed converted into a space that is all your own. You will not be disturbed by the home phone or by anyone knocking on the door. If you are writing a thriller it can really put you off your plot to answer the door right as the bad guys are creeping up on the heroine. And you can hardly tell that caller to go away because you are in the middle of a murder. That said, if it is an unwanted salesman that would be a really good way to get rid of them.
Some people have solved the problem of where to put their home office by setting up their computer inside a built-in wardrobe cavity. They can then close the doors when they leave it, so the toddlers can’t pull down the cables or chew them, or unplug anything. Now there are backlit laptops you can even have your office out on the deck in warm weather. This allows the kids to go play on the swing or trampoline while you are – for the most part – supervising them.
In fact, if you are short of space you can fit a computer desk and shelving under the stairs or in any other small space that is available – or that you can make available. Just be sure that there is enough light that you don’t strain your eyes.