How a Backyard Shed Can Make a Great Home Office
Working from home has become the new normal for many of us in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. And while it’s great to be able to roll out of bed and head to your home office in your PJs, there are some definite downsides to working from home full time. Chief among them is the lack of separation between work life and home life. It can be hard to stay focused and motivated when your workspace is also your living space. That’s why more and more people are considering backyard sheds as potential home office space. A shed can give you the extra square footage you need to spread out (without the huge expense of an addition), plus some much-needed separation between work and play. Here are a few things to keep in mind if you’re thinking about turning a shed into a home office.
Location, Location, Location
One of the best things about backyard sheds is that they can be placed just about anywhere on your property. But when you’re choosing a spot for your Shed-turned-office, there are a few things to keep in mind. First, you’ll want to make sure how far away from your house to place your shed. In New England winters you will have snow to remove to get to your shed. So, you definitely want a decent walkway out to your Shed so you can shovel the snow with ease. You’ll also want to choose a spot that gets good natural light during the day; after all, who wants to work in a dark, dreary space? And try to find a spot that’s relatively level that has enough land around it so you can add some landscaping design on the outside. A few shrubs and planter containers or cute window boxes for annuals during the spring and summer.
Another thing to consider with placement of your new office shed is access for visitors. If you have customers who will be coming to your home office, you will want to have the office shed close enough to your driveway or have an extended parking area near your shed for easy access.
Another great thing about Sheds is that they come in all shapes and sizes. When you’re choosing a Shed for your home office, size definitely matters—you’ll want to make sure the Shed is large enough to comfortably fit all of your office essentials, including a desk, chair, computer, lamp, and any other supplies you may need. Don’t forget to leave room for nonessentials too, like a coffee maker or mini fridge or an extra chair or two for clients to sit in comfortably. And decide if you need a small two-piece bathroom so you or any clients won’t have to go in the house to use a bathroom. This will also give you running water for the coffee maker and be able to do light dish cleaning.
This one is important! Depending on where you live, Sheds can get pretty hot in the summer and cold in the winter. That’s why it’s important to choose a shed with good temperature control features like windows that open and close and insulation. Trust me, you don’t want to be stuck working in an unbearable environment—temperature-controlled sheds will make all the difference when it comes to your comfort (and productivity!) while working from home. And think ahead for all the placement of electrical outlets that you will need as well as Wi-Fi for your internet needs.
Once you’ve found the perfect shed for your needs, it’s time to make it truly yours by customizing it with all of the must-haves for any comfortable workspace. From rugs and curtains to paintings and photos, adding personal touches will help turn your shed into a place you actually enjoy spending time in—which means more productive workdays for you! And if you work from home but need to have Zoom meetings with other colleagues, you’ll want to have a professional looking “staged” background wall behind you like maybe a nice painting and lighting or window, vs all your storage and printer equipment.
A home office shed might vary for different work needs. Some people will need just the basic office desk and credenza for supplies and printers. but for some other more creative occupations, you might set it up like open studio style and let fun begin!
If you are a photographer and will have clients coming in for portrait shoots, you will want to have some open space for your camera equipment and props, backdrop choices and lighting equipment while using just a small desk area and storage above rather than an elaborate office equipment.
If you’re an artist you’ll want good lighting and skylights, storage for a print drying area and a working sink for all the clean-up. And plenty of space to set up that easel and get creative!
If your work involves producing music, make sure you are well insulated and use materials on the walls and ceiling for good acoustics. Maybe have a voice recording closet built-in to your Shed. And wow, having your own studio Shed will help get those creative juices running without disturbing your family and your neighbors!
And imagine if you are a fiction writer and you have a peaceful office space with open and airy windows looking out into your back yard while you drift away in your work—with no interruptions from your creative thought process! You could also create a reading nook for yourself with bookshelves for all your books and decorations. Heck, I’m ready to purchase an office shed after just talking about all these fun possibilities!
If you’re considering adding a home office but don’t have the extra space inside your house, think about using a backyard shed instead! With their easy placement options and variety of sizes and styles available, sheds make great home offices – and with a few simple customizations, they can be transformed into cozy, productive workspaces in no time. So, what are you waiting for? Start planning your dream home office today!
Need help deciding where to start? Contact us today to speak with a shed design expert!