Women Working from Home: Designing Your Home Office

Women seeking to work from home often choose to start their own home-based businesses. Though the benefits of running a home business are numerous, many women soon realize that finding a balance between work and family can be difficult. Solving this dilemma depends to a large extent on the physical space in which the business operates.

A woman who wants to run a successful home-based business should try designate a specific space in her house that is solely for business purposes. Not only will this help her to be organized and professional, but it will also help to create a vital balance between her personal and professional life.

If you are a work-at-home mother who owns a new or growing home-based business, and you are looking to create a home office, then it is important to clarify your needs and resources before you start designing your space. The following are a few things to consider:

Where will the office be? Ideally, you will want a space that is either completely separate from your general living area, like a detached garage, or at the very least a room with a door that can be closed.

Obviously, a lot is going to depend on the nature of your business and your available space.

If only a common area is available for your business, a den, then at least try to design a set up that allows you to “lock up” the space once you have finished working.

If you are renovating a space, then choose a design that provides for adequate lighting, ventilation, heat and air conditioning. Make sure to also include phone jacks and electrical outlets.

What equipment and furniture do you need? Another important aspect of getting the right space for your home-office is acquiring the right equipment and furniture. Equipment includes a computer system as well as standard office equipment, such as a printer, scanner, or fax. Furnishing includes any tables, chairs, and file cabinets as well as lighting fixtures.

Who will use the space? If other people will be coming to your office, such as employees, customers, or vendors, then having a space that is separate, functional, and ascetically pleasing is extremely important.

When other people are involved with your business to the extent that you need to physically meet with them in your office, then the need for privacy is that much greater. Imagine trying to have a meeting while your four year old puts on a “performance” for the “interesting guest”.

What is your budget? If you need to acquire any equipment or furniture, or if you are planning renovations, then you will need a significant amount of capital. Make sure that you have the necessary funds to cover any costs associated with your home office.

If you are having difficulty securing traditional financing, then know that there are several alternative financing options available, such as equipment leasing, invoice factoring, and a business cash advance based on future credit card sales. Each one can help you to create the office you need to run your home business successfully.

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