Working from home is more common now than it has ever been, and many people are choosing to set themselves up an office space in their basement due to a lack of space anywhere else in their house. Basements tend to be a better spot for home offices than you might immediately think. They’re well removed from the rest of the house, which provides a good mental separation between your work space and your living space, and they tend to be significantly quieter than the rest of your house as well, so distractions like your kids or pets making noise or the neighbor running a leafblower don’t disrupt you while you’re trying to focus or listen to an important meeting. With remote work largely becoming the new normal, finishing your basement and setting up an office might be a great option for you! Here are some ideas for how to get the most out of this space in your home.
How Much of the Basement Should I Finish?
One of the first big choices you’ll face is whether you should plan on finishing your entire basement or just a portion of it. If you’re on a tight budget and only need a small area to work in, finishing one section of the basement and partitioning it off into its own room might be a good idea for you. On the other hand, there’s a huge amount of utility you can get from a completely finished basement, so you might find it’s worth it to do the whole thing. For instance, if you need to keep an eye on your kids during the workday, you can set up a playroom off to the side of your office space, that way you have them nearby but can close the door if you need to. Ultimately it’ll come down to whichever option works the best for you.
What are the Most Effective Changes?
Finishing a basement can be very transformative, but there are some practicalities you still have to keep in mind. For example, when choosing walls and floors, you can’t simply go with what looks good– you also have to consider what will function well. Things like hardwood floors are not recommended in basements even though they look great, because the moisture in the basement will usually result in warped floorboards. Conversely, carpet is a very popular choice in basements because it’s not only budget friendly, but it helps to promote warmth and coziness in a part of the house that would otherwise be very cold.
Lighting is also very important in a finished basement. If done well, it can transform your space from a dark and dingy cave to a comfortable room that matches the rest of the house beautifully. If you have any form of window or natural light in your basement, it might be a good idea to designate the surrounding area as your office space. Having access to some sunlight will help you to keep track of time better and is good for your mental health. For the rest of the space, consider your light fixtures and their spacing carefully so that you can make your basement space feel well lit and open.
Necessities and Fun Options
At the most basic level, your home office is going to need a desk and a chair. This might be your only actual necessity, depending on the kind of work you do, but here are some other options that you can include to spice up your space a little!
Shelves or filing cabinets can serve double duty in a home office, especially if you’re not planning to wall your space off from the rest of the basement. They can serve as a partition while also being useful for storage, and you can even decorate by adding books, plants, art, or knick-knacks to them.
Your job might entail you to have clients over to your home office occasionally. If this is the case, having some chairs where they can sit while you have a discussion is a great idea. If you’ve got the room for it and you plan on holding group meetings from time to time, you could even set up a conference table with multiple chairs! If you’re the kind of person who doesn’t love sitting in the same chair all day, a standing desk could be a good option for you, or you might like to include a sofa so that you can sprawl out to work or to relax at the end of a long day.
With these ideas in mind, you should be ready to start planning your basement home office! If you’re planning a basement finishing project or other remodeling projects near Berks County, PA, contact Eagle Construction today! We’re happy to help you get started.