How much does it cost to build or remodel a home office?
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Home Office Cost Guide
Updated: August 18, 2022
Building a home office can be a major advantage in being successful when working from home. Having a dedicated, quiet space helps you stay focused and productive. Using your own ideas along with considering what exactly you need in your home office, you can have your dream office right at home.
The average cost to build a home office depends on whether it’s a remodel, conversion, or an entirely new build. The average cost to convert a room into a home office is $2,500-$4,000, with the average homeowner paying $3,500 to convert a bedroom into a home office with a fresh coat of paint and flooring upgrades. The lowest cost for a home office is $2,000 to remodel an existing home office, including a new desk and lighting upgrades. On the high-end is the average cost for constructing a home office from scratch, which is $20,000 for a 12 x 12 square foot office with a solid desk and a bookcase.
Home Office Prices
|Home Office Costs
|National average cost
Cost to Convert Room vs Remodel vs Build a Home Office
Homeowners have several options when it comes to creating a dedicated home office space. First, they can convert an existing room into a home office. The average cost of converting a room into a home office is $3,500 to convert a bedroom to a home office with painting and flooring enhancements. They can also remodel their current office, with average costs of around $2,000, depending on how much you want to change. There’s also the option to build a new home office from scratch, which is generally more expensive with an average range of $18,000 to $35,000. The average homeowner shells out $20,000 to add a 12- x 12-foot office to their home.
Deciding which project works best for your house depends on your budget and your home office requirements. A remodel is generally the most budget-friendly and takes less time. The foundation of the home office is already in place. You’re just making changes to the room’s flooring, lighting, paint, furniture, or electrical aspects. Converting an existing room into a home office typically costs more because more contracting work and manual labor are involved, such as installing new electrical or HVAC systems to support a home office properly. If you’re converting a bathroom or garage, there may be significant flooring or lighting upgrades to do too. Finally, building a new home office from the ground up costs the most but allows you to customize your plans with a builder. If you want to add space to your home, increasing your square footage and giving you more privacy, then it may be worth the higher costs.
Labor Cost to Build or Remodel a Home Office
The average cost for a remodel is $66 per sq. ft., and for a home office addition, it is $300 per sq. ft. or a range of 10-20% or more of the cost of the project. The difference is in the amount of work involved as well as additional materials. An addition requires more professionals, such as electricians, roofers, and HVAC installers. These rates vary by state and the scope of the project. Your home addition may require an architectural designer. Your contractor can determine if this is necessary. Expect to pay $150 an hour for this service.
Professional contractors need to obtain a permit and will have insurance to cover themselves and their workers during the building process. When you use a professional for the job, you can expect top-quality, safe installation, and finishing.
The process of adding an addition or remodeling an existing place is similar, with some exceptions. The first step for both is to determine a budget. If you need to obtain funding, now is the time to do that. With a remodeling project, there is no need to establish a foundation, build a roof, or make changes to HVAC. However, you still need to decide if you want any built-in bookshelves or desks, additional electrical outlets, choose the flooring and paint colors. The process will most likely be quicker and less cumbersome than building an addition.
The difference between adding an addition or remodeling an existing room is in the cost and the work involved. Once the budget, size, and layout are determined, you need to decide on options including flooring, paint or wallpaper, type of foundation, and insulation. This takes time, and it may seem to drag on, especially if the weather does not cooperate. It can take 1-2 months or longer.
Home Office Conversion Cost by Room
While some homeowners choose to build an entirely new home office from start to finish, others prefer to take an existing space and transform it into their ideal home office. Like any home project, a few pros and cons must be considered for both options. While it may be less expensive and less time-consuming to use an existing space, the average cost of around $400 to $3,000 means you may not end up getting everything you want. Eventually, these converted home offices may prove to be too small or too close to bedrooms, hallways, and front doors. The overall success of this project depends on which space you choose to convert, and your home’s overall layout and design.
|Costs (Including Labor)
|$500 - $5,000
|$1,000 - $10,000
|$1,000 - $10,000
|$1,000 - $12,000
|Formal Living Room
|$2,000 - $10,000
|$2,000 - $15,000
|$5,000 - $15,000
Convert Bedroom to Home Office
It’s easier than one may think to convert a closet to a desk and home office. This is a good option if you just need a small workspace, mainly a desk for your computer with a little bit of storage and a comfy chair. To fit out the new office space, you would probably need some cabinetry to replace the current closet space and make it more suitable for your work needs. You can convert an entire bedroom to a home office if you want to make the most use of your space and enjoy a private area to pursue your professional goals. Converting a bedroom to a home office gives you a good amount of storage too. Depending on your plans, you could pay between $500 and $5,000 to finalize this bedroom conversion.
Attic Office Conversion
If your home has an attic and you want to get better use out of the space, you can try converting it to an upstairs office. The feasibility of this project depends on the condition of your attic and how much work would have to be done to ensure it is a safe working space. If you live in an old home and there are concerns about your attic being structurally sound for you to walk around and work up there, this may not make as much sense. If you have a clean, safe, and spacious attic, this can serve as a great solution for your home office needs. You can be separated from the rest of the house with a lot of privacy. The final price depends on how much work you need to do to the attic, so it’s wise to budget anywhere from $1,000 to $10,000.
Shed to Office Conversion
For the many homeowners who have a shed on their property, this storage space presents an opportunity to tuck away things that aren’t needed all the time, such as outdoor equipment or moving boxes. A shed is also a good space to convert into something else, such as a home office or a workout room. What’s nice about converting a shed to an office is that it’s already its own separate space with considerable privacy. On the downside, if it doesn’t have an adequate electrical supply, you may end up with a fairly expensive project, especially if you need an HVAC system installed too. A shed to office conversion may cost between $1,000 and $10,000.
Garage Conversion to Office
If you have a decent-sized garage and want to use this space to your advantage, you can turn it into a home office. Some garages have an elevated area that works well for your workspace. Otherwise, you can make a partition to separate your office from the rest of the garage. This offers privacy and a good-sized home office. Although extra costs may be involved to get the garage up to standard in terms of office amenities, such as electrical supply and heating or cooling. Once you get a professional contractor to take a look, you can expect their estimate for a garage conversion to an office to range from $1,000 to $12,000.
Converting Formal Living Room into Office
Some houses have a formal living room that doesn’t get used all that often. Even if you host family dinners and get-togethers regularly, you may decide that your formal living room would be the best spot for a home office. If you only want to use a portion of the room, you could invest in partitions to divide the room and give you the quiet workspace you need. A project on a smaller scale like that may cost you between $500 and $2,000. If you want to turn the entire formal living room into a large home office with a long desk, bookshelves, and sitting space, you’re looking at costs more around $2,000 to $10,000 to get the right setup for long-term use.
Convert Bathroom to Office
There’s also the option of converting a bathroom to a home office. While many homeowners feel like they don’t have enough bathroom space, others have the luxury of too many bathrooms. If you have a spare bathroom and feel it would be better used as an office, bring in a professional team to convert it. Just be prepared that this project may cost you between $2,000 and $15,000, depending on the scope and scale of the work. They will have to remove or conceal the plumbing and bathroom fixtures to function as a home office. That makes this project a little more challenging than converting a standard bedroom or living room, but it can be done if that’s what works best for your household.
Convert Shipping Container to Office
Shipping containers are becoming more respected in modern-day design. They are being used for full homes and smaller amenities, such as swimming pools or guest quarters. You can convert a shipping container to an office, a fun and unique project that gives you privacy and some decent workspace. Most shipping containers won’t have the electrical setup that you need to run a home office, so that’s one big cost to keep in mind. This conversion project usually costs between $5,000 and $15,000.
Cost to Build Home Office by Size
It’s important to think about size when building a nice home office. How small or large your office is sets the scene for the entire space and sets the stage for your working experience. Depending on the existing square footage you have to work with or how much you want to add on, you can have a small, medium, or large home office. A small home office is typically the most budget-friendly and saves space while taking up only a portion of an existing room. At 300 square feet or less, a small home office requires less flooring, lighting, and furniture than a medium office, typically between 300 and 600 square feet. Medium and large offices over 800 square feet are usually standalone rooms with the option of luxurious add-ons and finishes at the higher end of the price range.
|Costs (Labor and Materials)
|9 x 9 feet
|10 x 10 feet
|11 x 11 feet
|12 x 12 feet
|15 x 15 feet
|20 x 20 feet
|25 x 25 feet
|28 x 28 feet
Your foundation should match your current home in most cases. If you think you might want to switch up the foundation, talk with your contractor to find out if this is possible. If feasible, look at photos of homes with different foundations. This helps you determine if your home will look the way you want it to. There are basically three foundation choices.
Concrete slabs with footers are the least expensive and are widely used in modern homes. Cons include cracking due to tree roots or shifting soil as well as repairs being more expensive. The cost for concrete slabs is $7,500-$12,000. A pier and beam foundation allows for easy detection of termites and access to repairs. Concerns include that it can be less stable due to moisture, and sagging can occur. The cost for an entire house with pier and beam foundations is $7,000-$13,000. A crawl space foundation is recommended for flood-prone areas but is more likely to get termites. The cost for a crawl space foundation is $10,000-$25,000.
Home Office Walls
There are several considerations for the walls in your new home office addition. You want to think about what type of wall will work best for your remote space.
Inside wall finishing is normally drywall at a cost of $40-$60 per panel. However, brick ($12-$17 per sq. ft.) and paneling ($5-$12 per sq. ft.) are great choices as well.
The outer wall finishing should match or complement the rest of your house. Traditional choices include concrete, brick, and siding. The cost for concrete blocks is $20-$30 per square foot. For brick, expect to pay $20-$30 per square foot. Siding costs $6.50-$12.50 per square foot.
Insulated Home Office
Insulation is imperative for energy efficiency, as it protects the temperature-controlled air inside the home from escaping and outside air from getting in. If you want your home office to be comfortable, no matter the season with the right temperature, you definitely need an insulated home office. The thickness or R-value determine the cost of the insulation. There are several types of insulation materials, but the three most common are fiberglass, foam, and cellulose. Fiberglass and cellulose are often used to fill attics, ceilings and walls and installed using a machine that blows the materials in place. Meanwhile, foam can be sprayed into place but this costs more than fiberglass or cellulose. The cost for these insulation options varies between $0.12-$6.87 per square foot,with foam at the higher end of the price range.
Soundproof Home Office
Soundproofing is also important in a home office. You want to have privacy and quiet to stay focused. In addition, you may want to keep your phone calls and other noise from reaching others in the house. Acoustic panels can be installed, foam insulation can be blown into the walls, and mass loaded vinyl can be added to the floors, walls, and ceiling. When converting an existing room, you can add a soundproof wall. Also, drapes, carpet, rugs, and wall hangings can be used to muffle sounds. To soundproof a room, it will cost $1,000 to $2,500, including labor, materials, and tools.
When adding a home office, you must decide how to heat and cool the new room. The effectiveness of your HVAC connection is vital to your comfort while working so you can ensure adequate heating, ventilation, and air conditioning throughout the office and the rest of your house. Bringing in an HVAC professional is important. Their expert opinion ensures that you’re not left with a home office that’s uncomfortably hot or cold.
Home Office Ventilation
Whether you live in a hot or cold climate, your home office should be properly ventilated to give you healthy air quality and keep you feeling good on long workdays. Some older offices may overlook ventilation and feel stuffy, but an HVAC professional can help create the perfect environment for your home office addition. Their ventilation solutions depend on the overall HVAC system in the rest of the home. They want the entire system to connect seamlessly. Any existing windows or doors in the office may impact airflow. Remember that the HVAC ventilation eliminates smells and circulates the air in the room, so it's a good thing to prioritize.
When adding a home office, you can link to your existing HVAC by adding vents to the new room. Check the capacity of your unit as you may need a larger or additional unit. Keep in mind that ventilation installation such as ceiling fans average around $460 while double-hung windows that open partially cost between $125 and $670 to install.
Home Office Air Conditioner
Sitting in a hot home office on a sunny summer day isn’t very conducive to getting a lot of work done. Feeling sticky and sweaty isn’t nice, especially if you’re trying to have important meetings or put deals together. That’s why a home office air conditioner is a great investment. You could choose an AC and heating combo or get a solo AC unit if you live somewhere with a warm climate. Installing a window air conditioner in your home office ranges from $200 to $1,000. You could also look into a split or ductless air conditioning system, which costs between $1,000 and $3,000, especially if you need to upgrade your current home system.
Home Office Heating
In many climates, heating is just as important, if not more so, than cooling. Not only does a functioning home office heater keep you from getting chilly, but maintaining the correct temperature helps keep moisture under control. A quality heater allows you to set your office up to be a productive space year-round. Some people prefer a small, portable heater, especially if there are only a few cold days a year. Others look at central heating or radiant floor heating to create a warm working space. Floor heating starts at $800 for a small room, such as an office or bathroom, while an electric furnace averages $1,600 to $3,200 for installation.
Home Office Wiring
A home office runs on technology, and that means a lot of electricity and wiring to keep you connected at all times. You need space for your computer, monitor, telephone, and any other machinery that may be useful in your office, whether it’s for printing, scanning, or making products. For cable management in your home office, a few conveniently located electrical outlets and a smart cabling system help avoid running wires all over the place. Electrical outlet installation costs around $120 to $200 on average. You can also look at upgrading your wiring to install grounded plugs for $100 to $200 or putting these plugs in your newly built home office. By doing this, you can plug in your devices without creating tripping hazards.
Office Supplies Cost
With the right electrical supply in place, you can keep your office organized with all the electronic equipment like printers, scanners, and screens, as well as filing cabinets and your actual workspace. If you just need a quiet space to work on your computer, without much printing, scanning, or filing, then you can get away with less office equipment. If you need to print hundreds of pages a day, scan documents often, and host virtual conferences, this changes your need for office equipment. If it’s just you in your home office, you may need less equipment than if you plan to bring in additional employees.
It’s also nice to have storage for all your smaller office supplies such as papers, folders, notebooks, envelopes, and pens. Your office equipment cost depends on how much you need to buy and what you already have. The same goes for your office supplies. You can keep the prices down by only buying what you need and have room for, rather than cluttering your new home office space and making it difficult to work. With more space to work with, you get more bang for your buck.
Home Office Internet
One of the most important considerations for your new home office is the ability to connect via email, phone, and face-to-face meetings. Think about how well your internet will work in your new space because it will affect your productivity.
You need electrical outlet locations convenient to items like the desk, table, chair, and couch. Adding an electrical outlet ranges from $120-$200. In addition, you may need additional electricity options. It is best to consult with a professional about your current electrical capacity’s ability to handle additional work.
The spacing of your internet connections/phone lines is vital because a router that is too far away can influence how well your connection works. You may consider wired internet to ensure excellent connectivity at all times.
Next, think about your network setup. Many home office workers need a computer, printer/scanner, and television. When everything is in sync, you are more likely to be productive. Your current router may need a wi-fi whole home booster or ‘switch’ to create a network that works better for your new home office. Costs for a wi-fi home booster are around $75, while a switch is $50-$90.
Home Office Lighting
Another essential aspect of your office is the lighting. Having the wrong kind of lighting can create an inability to see or cause eye discomfort. Some things to consider include the natural light coming in from windows and skylights. Natural sunlight improves your mood and offers encouragement, but it’s hard to depend on that alone. On dark, gloomy days, you likely need artificial light to maintain a functional workspace. Lamps are a good choice as they reduce glare and adjust to different heights. You can add dimmer switches that cost between $10 and $25 each and allow you to change the light to suit your needs.
Other ways to improve your home office lighting include selecting light or matte paint colors to minimize shadows and avoiding Edison lights. These trendy lights have a cool look to them but typically do not offer enough lighting for your workspace. Make sure you arrange your office furniture in a way that gives you the most access to the natural light. Think about the glare from the afternoon sunshine and how that affects your computer screen. Of course, proper blinds or shades can help you control the light coming into the room.
Home Office Flooring Cost by Material
There are many choices for flooring, but some are better options than others. If only you will use the office, choose a product that is more luxurious and less sturdy. If there will be visitors or officemates, pick a more hardy flooring.
|Type of Flooring
|Cost per Square Foot (Only Materials)
|$0.69 - $2.50
|$3 - $16
|$7 - $12
|$8 - $25
|$8.50 - $12
Laminate flooring costs $0.69 to $2.50 per sq. ft. Laminate flooring is considered an economical choice and comes from lower-grade particleboards with a top layer protecting the base. Benefits of laminate include low-maintenance and the fact that they are ideal for home offices with high traffic. Laminate flooring is less expensive than carpet or hardwood. It looks like hardwood but without the cost. Its lifespan is about 10 years.
The cost is $3 to $16 per sq. ft. for hardwood flooring. Hardwood works well in rooms styled as traditional offices. A key benefit of hardwood flooring is that most types are designed to last upwards of 15 years, even in high traffic rooms like a residential office. Hardwood is a beautiful, durable flooring. It is expensive but lasts a long time. This flooring is easy to maintain, but when scratched, refinishing is required.
Home Office Carpet
The cost of carpet depends on the brand and pile, but you can expect to pay $7 to $12 per sq. ft. Carpet allows you to truly style your office to your personal preferences with countless colors, materials, and designs available. Invest in a good carpet pad for the office to reduce noise levels and protect underlayment. Home office carpet is not a good idea if you want a rugged choice. It is not easily cleaned, particularly from spills.
Typical costs for ceramic tile are $8 to $25 per sq. ft. Ceramic tile is an easy-to-clean flooring and is extremely tough. Concerns include that it is unyielding, so if something is dropped on it, it will most likely break. If you stand a lot in your job, ceramic tile might not be the best choice. Costs vary according to the type, grade, and brand. Ceramic tile is a less popular choice for home offices but can be perfect for those looking to add accents like throw rugs.
Costs vary depending on your choice, but the average price is $8.50 to $12.00 per sq. ft. Vinyl is an easy-maintenance choice. It is also a softer flooring compared to ceramic tile. Instead of thin planks like laminate, vinyl planks are thicker and longer-lasting. They are more expensive than laminate but last longer if you have children or pets who may be in the home office at times.
Home Office Furniture
Before starting your home office addition or remodel, consider your furniture and storage needs. Your home office is not complete without a desk and chair, but what else do you need? How much working space do you want? Some people prefer a large desk space with little clutter to spread all their papers out, while others need and want a lot of storage to keep their papers and personal belongings. Your home office furniture changes the look and feel of the space, so plan accordingly.
Home Office Desk
Will your desk need drawers? Do you want a large or compact desk? There are many types and sizes of desks. You can purchase an antique desk that is heavy if you want your home office to look and feel traditional. A glass or lacquer desk creates a modern environment. If you want a larger space, an L-shaped desk is a great choice. If you decide on a wooden desk, what type of wood, and do you want to top it with veneer? Consider not only what you like but what will last for a long time and hold up under coffee spills. Also, ensure your mouse can run smoothly on the surface. The height of your desk is also important. Many people purchase an adjustable standing desk to avoid sitting all the time. Think about comfort and convenience items like sliding keyboard trays and places to store things that you need close by, such as your CPU, printer, paper, and files.
Home Office Working Table
To make sure you have plenty of space to do your work, you may need a working table. First, choose a size that works for you. Having the space to spread out your photos, catalogs, or drawings helps you work smarter. Think about the material you want this table to be made of. This might be a simple answer if you want it to match or complement the other furniture in the room but also choose something that will work for you.
Home Office Chair
Research which type of chair works best for the kind of work you do as well as the number of hours you will be sitting in it. Most office chairs are rated according to these considerations. There are many choices for office chairs. Do you want a headrest, armrests, and lumbar support? If you buy one with armrests, make sure it fits under your desk and working table. Consider the material for your chair and think about how long it will last. An antique wooden chair may go well with your desk, but will it be comfortable? Leather lasts forever and is timeless but may be too hot or sticky. There are ergonomic chairs and executive chairs, as well as office chairs for tall and petite people. You can buy a chair that is contemporary and comes in bright colors or something more toned down in gray or black.
Home Office Storage
Storage is key to organization because clutter is a deterrent to working efficiently. Purchasing cabinets, bookshelves, and file cabinets to store paperwork, files, and books keeps your office nice and neat. Think about what you will need and what will work for your office. There are tall, skinny options if you do not have much room. If you want to hide the clutter, a cabinet with doors is a great choice. There are many materials and sizes to choose from, so pick something you believe will last as well as provide the correct storage solution for your needs.
Chill Out Area Furniture
Will you need a comfy chair or couch for quiet time or for when you have guests? If so, having a space for informal meetings may be a wise decision. Add a coffee table with magazines and a plant to create interest for your guests. If this area will be for you to relax and unwind after working for hours on a project, include items that will aid in destressing, such as an essential oil diffuser and water dispenser. Look at materials that will last and think about the size to make sure it fits in your space.
Custom Home Office Furniture Cost
If you want to keep your home office project as inexpensive as possible, then you may want to limit your furniture purchases to only the things you need. If you prefer to deck out your home office and make the space feel very personal and professional, then custom home furniture may be perfect for you.
|Custom Office Furniture
|Cost (Materials and Labor)
|$150 - $800
|$200 - $800
|$400 - $2,000
|$450 - $2,500
|$450 - $3,000
Many home offices feature bookshelves, giving you the space to display books, photo frames, and memorabilia and store folders and files without dominating the entire room. Some people like a small bookshelf tucked away in the corner, while others want multiple bookshelves in a larger home office. Depending on your preference and how much shelf space you need, you can expect to pay between $150 and $800 for a custom bookshelf project to complement your home office.
Custom Office Chairs
Custom home office chairs may not be as common as custom desks or cabinets. However, they are a smart choice for those who aren’t satisfied with standard office chairs for sale at furniture stores. Maybe you need extra support and prefer a certain type of padding, or perhaps you want a certain design aesthetic to pull the room together. Whatever you’re thinking, you can look forward to customizing your home office chair for somewhere between $200 and $800. Just remember that you will pay more for special padding and adjustment options.
Custom Desk for Home Office
Every home office needs a desk. Your desk is the main piece that you center the rest of your office around. If you mainly work from a laptop and want somewhere to sit down and concentrate, then a small desk should do the trick. If your work involves drawing or assembly or having multiple devices to switch between, then a larger desk is more your style. Either way, you can get a custom desk made to your size and design specifications. Some custom desks for home offices feature built-in drawers or cable entries where you can lead electrical wires right up and through the desk. Wood and metal are the most common materials for custom home office desks. The cost can be anywhere from $400 to $2,000 depending on your requirements and the furniture company.
Custom Home Office Cabinets
Home office cabinets are another area you can customize. Many people like at least some form of cabinetry in their home office. They want a place to store their equipment and supplies without too much clutter. You can select from custom standalone cabinets or custom closet designs built from cabinets if you need a considerable amount of storage and have the room. You can choose from many different wood varieties for your custom cabinets. The cost ranges from $450 to $2,500 or even more. The custom closet cost per square foot is around $15 to $30. Custom closet projects can range from $500 to $5,000 based on the square footage.
Bookshelves are generally more ladder style and single mounted to the wall, whereas bookcases are larger, free-standing pieces with built-in shelves. Pricewise, custom bookshelves are usually less expensive, around $150 to $800. Typical bookcase designs dictate that the cost of bookcases will be higher than bookshelves. However, many homeowners find it’s worth it when they see the finished result. Smooth cherry or mahogany are great choices for a stylish finish to complete a custom bookcase project. The cost will be between $450 and $3,000 based on the materials, bookcase size, quantity, and the custom furniture maker.
Home Office Bathroom
If the office is located farther away or you have clients who visit, you may need a bathroom. It may be that you only need a half bath with only a toilet and sink. The cost for adding a half bath is $12,000 for 12 sq.ft., and a full bath is $47,000 for 48 sq.ft. Building a powder room or full bath to go with your home office can be kept more affordable if you choose budget-friendly finishes. On the other hand, you can go all out with a splashy style, but you have to be prepared to pay more for fancy bathroom fixtures and features. If you only have one bathroom in your home and decide to add a home office, this may be a good opportunity to build a new bathroom.
Home Office Addition Pros and Cons
Adding an extra room is a big decision. An office addition to a house is worthwhile and requires a lot of work in many circumstances. You need to be prepared. You may have an existing space that you can use to get the home office you need, or you might need to start from scratch and build an entirely new addition for your office.
Pros and cons can be noted on either side, especially when you keep in mind that a home office addition could cost you anywhere from $11,520 to $47,520 when it’s all said and done. While a home office addition increases your home’s value and offers a new private space, especially if you decide to hire people in the future, the control over the design comes with a higher price tag that can take time to finish. An addition could be messy and disruptive to your daily routine and increase property tax and homeowners insurance. There’s no guarantee you will get your desired return on investment. Despite those few downsides, many people find that the greater flexibility and freedom offered by a new home office make a positive difference in their lifestyle, both when working and when spending time with loved ones.
What to Do Before Building a Home Office
You want to consider several things before you start on your home office addition. Except for helping you determine the size of the office and budgeting, most contractors will not offer to do the following prep work for you.
- Determine the office size. Decide the best position for the window and door. Measure the furniture you want to use and add it to the floor space.
- Create a budget that you can live with and talk with your contractor about how to make sure everything is included.
- Prepare for construction by removing items that may be in the way on the inside and outside of your home. The contractor may put up tarps or plywood to protect other areas.
- Expect dust during construction. You may want to consider staying somewhere else until the construction is complete.
- Protect carpet and flooring, personal belongings, drapery, and furniture when creating a home office in an existing room.
- Children and pets might need to stay with friends or family due to the noise and dust.
- Most home additions require site prep. If your worksite requires excavation to prepare for concrete pouring, this will be at a cost of $50-$200 per cubic yard. Demolition may be needed if you have any existing walls or concrete to remove. This typically costs between $2-$17 per square foot.
Working from Home and Productivity
As more and more people work remotely, it is important to understand how to achieve maximum productivity while you are somewhat unmonitored. Motivation is a major factor in productivity. One thing you can do is to have a dedicated home office area that is quiet and free from distractions. This can be difficult, especially if you have children or a spouse at home while you work. That is why a home office is a key factor in meeting your work-from-home goals.
An essential aspect of a home office is the furniture. At a bare minimum, most people want to have a desk and chair. However, think about the type of work you do. If you need a large space to lay items out, you may want to add a work table. This could be a pulldown table that can be stored upright on the wall when not in use or something more permanent.
Additionally, you want to think about comfort. While sitting at a desk chair is sometimes necessary, you want to have a comfortable, well-cushioned chair or couch to sit on while you work. People with laptops often prefer this.
Next, think about your lighting. While computers have backlighting, you may have times when you are writing or viewing items other than your computer. Also, you want lighting that will not cause a glare on your computer screen. Recessed lighting may help with lighting all areas of the room. Natural light is a good option for bright days, but you need other lighting for dreary days.
If you work from home alone, sound is not usually a problem unless you are recording something, and the lawn guys come to mow the grass. Conversely, if there are others in your home, you may consider adding soundproofing to your home office. There are many options, but the most common is acoustic panels or built-in insulation.
Connectivity is almost certainly a major concern in any work situation. Having a reliable internet connection is vital to working successfully from home. Make sure your home office has access to plenty of electrical outlets and is wired for internet and cable.
Most people are accustomed to using technology for meetings and discussions. Apps like FaceTime and Zoom are great tools to throw around ideas, ask questions, and even lighten the mood with an appropriate joke or two. These tools can also be used for encouragement and to help you stay on task.
Home Office Security System
When you’re operating a business out of your home, you need to consider security measures. A home office security system is intended to keep out burglars and ward off unwanted individuals from entering a home office. Home office security doesn’t have to be complex and can be as simple as putting on a smart lock. Smart locks are managed through wireless networks. RFID, and keypads. The price will be around $200 to have a smart lock professionally installed in your home office.
If you have sensitive materials inside the office, you may want to upgrade security to include cameras and alarms. Surveillance cameras can send a motion detection alert when it senses someone entering the office. The camera can also be set to record when activity is detected within the space. Depending on the camera and setup, you can expect to pay anywhere from $150 to $600 to monitor your home office. If you already have a home security system in place, you could also inquire about adding an alarm for the office. Typically, adding an alarm costs less than $75.
Inside the office, you should consider security measures. Locking filing cabinets can be useful for keeping documents secured. Desks often include a locking drawer too, which can hold sensitive items.
Home Office Ideas
Since you will spend a lot of time in this room, consider the style of your home office. There are many ways to make your space uniquely you. Of course, you can always consider hiring an interior designer to help you figure out the design that fits your needs best.
Use different paint colors, wallpaper, or a combination to make the walls of your office pleasant and fun. Adding accessories, such as pillows, artwork, and knickknacks, will add your personality and create visual interest. Use wall calendars, whiteboards, and bulletin boards for organization. There are many decorative options for these, so they do not have to be dull and boring.
Industrial Home Office
One type of option to choose from is an industrial look with lots of metal and natural-looking wood. Industrial offices have minimalist designs without a lot of clutter as part of the aesthetic. Metal and wooden desks are commonly seen in this type of office. Many industrial offices have an accent wall, possibly made from exposed brick. Wall colors are almost always neutral, with grays and browns most often seen.
Scandinavian Home Office
A Scandinavian home office has some similarities to industrial office types. For one, both designs are minimalist without too many knick-knacks or furniture pieces cluttering the area. A Scandinavian home office differs in that the room will always have a light color scheme. Walls are typically white or cream-colored. Furniture pieces are also frequently white, including chairs and desks. Choosing a botany concept gives your home office a relaxed and stress-free feel as you work. A bamboo desk surrounded by live plants brings the outside in and provides fresh air to breathe.
Minimalist Home Office
A minimalist home office will not have oversized desks and bulky chairs. Instead, consider simple desk designs or types built into the wall of the room. Leather chairs are used occasionally, but most minimalist designs use basic stationery chairs. Another feature of minimalist home offices is built-in shelving. The main idea when designing a minimalist home office is to consider function. Nothing in the home office will be for aesthetic reasons alone.
Farmhouse Home Office
A farmhouse home office keeps with the aesthetic of the rest of your space, despite having modern elements such as computers and printers. Office desks are often made from reclaimed wood in this type of space. Oversized desks with hutches are another common feature. Rustic decor items are traditionally used, including framed artwork and old-fashioned clocks. Decor items are used in abundance, including house plants and frilly curtains. Wall colors may be neutral but often including a wallpaper border. Barn doors and shiplap are common design features seen in home offices that subscribe to the farmhouse style.
Bohemian Home Office
Bohemian home offices have a fun and flirty design. The aesthetic has a feminine appeal and includes many accent pieces to give off a bohemian vibe. Furniture and wall colors are usually light as a way to draw the eye to other decor items. Plenty of house plants are usually found in this type of home office, along with walls adorned with framed artwork or photographs. Accent pieces could include a shag area rug, fluffy pillows, and floor chairs. Moroccan style inspirations are usually found in these home offices with jeweled accent tones.
Feng Shui Home Office
Before designing your home office in a Feng Shui style, you should book a consultation with a professional. A two-hour consultation costs about $200. The consultant covers the rules of Feng Shui in detail. The basic idea of the Feng Shui design is to create the space in a way that allows positive energy. The first part of Feng Shui involves choosing the right space. Ideally, a Zen home office should be away from the bedroom and have a separate entrance. Inspiring decor items should be around the space, including any awards, family photos, and quotes. Allow for natural light and keep the space open without having the desk face the wall. The recommended Feng Shui office colors are usually blue and green. The green color means you’ll attract new beginnings and success. Blue attracts security. White accents are popular in feng shui offices since it encourages focus.
Glam Home Office
A glam home office has a very distinguished look. The style will be classic and timeless with expensive pieces of furniture, like a desk made from cherry or oak. Instead of light-colored walls, the paint will be deep, rich colors, like darker browns and reds. Crystal fixtures could be seen, along with a chandelier centered in the room. Built-in cabinetry may be a part of the room too. Glam offices embrace jewel tones and rely on expensive materials to give a luxurious look to the space. You’ll see a lot of gold and silver accents. Furnishings and accent pieces will be crafted from high-end materials such as silk and velvet to give a glam vibe.
Mid-Century Modern Home Office
Mid-century modern uses style inspiration from the 1950s and 1960s homes. Minimalism is a notable aspect of this design style, with furniture pieces simple and sturdy. Wall colors remain neutral while dark furniture pieces draw in the eye. A few accent pieces may be in white or black, such as a chair or side table. Not many decor items will be around the room, besides a few simple pieces like a houseplant or accent floor lamp.
Traditional Home Office
A traditional home office is a type that you can find in most modern homes. The style is distinguished and can be decorated with personal touches such as framed awards, degrees, or photographs. Traditional home offices feature leather and wood as the two main materials used for decoration purposes. Wooden desks with leather wingback chairs are a classic style. Beige and cream colors are often seen on the walls. Carpet is usually selected for flooring purposes. Wood furniture will be not stained but rather a natural shade.
Coastal Home Office
Coastal home offices give off a beachy, relaxed vibe with linen and natural wood furniture. These offices are usually found in shore houses or summer homes. Blues and greens will be used in a lot of the designs, especially for wall color selections. White is often seen as either the central color or an accent option for desks, picture frames, and wall decor.
Small Home Office Ideas
While there are plenty of possibilities for a big home office, even if you’re short on space, you can still make your office vision a reality. Just by being creative and planning ahead, you can optimize your space and still enjoy everything you need for years of comfort and productivity in your home office.
First, come up with your list of priorities. What do you absolutely have to have in your home office? What are your main goals, and what are you hoping to get out of your workspace? If you want to write a book and all you need is somewhere to jot down your thoughts and maybe keep a few papers, then you know your priorities are your computer, a desk, and a chair with ample natural light. If you want to print lots of materials for your projects, you need to put room for a printer and table space ahead of other features like bookcases or extra chairs. It’s all about being smart with your space and only putting in what you need to get started. You can add more later once you have the necessities in place.
Smaller spaces require thinking outside the box. Consider built-ins or a fold-down desk if you are tight on space. The cost of built-ins varies according to the size and materials. The average price is $2,510.You may need a place for plants, books, and photos. If you have a smaller space, your walls are the best option for these items. The cost is $14.45-$23.00 per linear foot of shelving, including installation.
Home Office Ideas on a Budget
You don’t have to have a ton of money to get your home office done, either. If you have a certain budget, you need to stick to it. Most contractors and furniture companies will work with you to offer solutions within your price point. Things like standard furniture instead of custom and using your current HVAC and electrical systems help you keep costs down. Instead of building a brand new office from the ground up, which would require a lot of materials and labor to ensure the electrical and ventilation are up to scratch, you can explore your options to convert a portion of another room into your home office. Approaching your home office project with a less is more attitude helps you save money in the long run.
Efficient Home Office
As we become more conscious of the need for energy efficiency, it is important to look at ways you can make your home office more energy-efficient. Some ways to do this include selecting energy-efficient insulation, roofing, and lighting options. When purchasing your computer, monitor, and printer, look for EnergyStar products that indicate a good energy rating. Plus, passive solar home design is a way of making use of the climate and home site location to decrease heating and cooling costs. Your contractor can help you figure out the best way to accomplish this. You may even be able to add solar panels to increase the energy efficiency in your office and throughout the entire home.
Home Office Alternatives
If you are unsure about adding a home addition, consider other less expensive options, such as a bump-out. This an area extending from an existing space like a bedroom or dining room. A contractor can use an existing foundation and roofing by extending a room you already have. A bump-out is usually about 2-3 feet wide and 10-12 feet long. They do not require additional HVAC. The cost is $17,000-$30,000, depending on the size and amount of work needed. If your budget is limited, tuck an office under the stairs by adding a built-in desk with drawers under the stairwell. You can even use a kitchen nook, a space under a window, or a corner may work as well. Look around your home for places that a desk could be installed to suffice as your home office.
Enhancement and Improvement Costs
Home Office Ergonomic Chair
When thinking about home office furniture, more and more people turn to ergonomic chairs with additional lumbar support and easy adjustment mechanisms. These chairs are meant to offer more support and comfort for those who spend long hours sitting down. They are especially good for people with poor posture or those who have back problems. Ergonomic chairs usually cost between $150 and $700.
Home Office Standing Desk
In addition to an ergonomic chair, a standing desk is a great solution if you’re looking to switch things up and stay healthy while working. Standing is good for your body and mind. Desks with adjustable heights allow you to choose between sitting and standing. Standing desks can be anywhere from $225 to $700.
Home Office Whiteboard
Whiteboards work well in classrooms as well as home offices. If you’re a visual person and like to draw out your plans and make to-do lists, then putting a whiteboard on your wall could be a good idea. You can jot out your ideas and brainstorm with a quality whiteboard fixed on the wall, priced around $25 to $75. You can also try an entire whiteboard wall covering that maybe $150 to $500 depending on the final size and retailer.
Home Office Video Conference Setup
Many professionals who work from home are adding video conferencing tools to their home offices. The video conference setup allows for easy communications while connecting with team members through Zoom and Google Meet. To get a video conferencing setup in your home office, you’ll need a webcam, microphone, speakers, and high-speed internet access. For a quality setup, you’ll spend around $1,000 for all the tools needed to communicate clearly and effectively from home.
Treadmill desks have become increasingly popular with at-home workers. Instead of sitting down all day, you’re able to work in some fitness while keeping up with your job duties. A treadmill desk is usually a floor-type with a flat tray attached that allows you to place your laptop and other items. Controls allow you to set the speed of the treadmill to your preferences when in use. Expect to pay an average of $1,000 to $2,500 for the treadmill desk, including delivery and setup.
A cycling desk works like a treadmill desk. You’ll have the option to get a workout in on a spin bike while using your laptop or tablet. A bicycle desk looks the same as a traditional bike with the inclusion of a flat tray to store your work materials. Other types of spin bikes are designed for use with a desk and won’t include handlebars or front controls. On average, you’ll spend $300 to $600 for a bicycle desk with delivery and setup.
Additional Considerations and Costs
- Permits are always required when adding onto your home. Ensure that your contractor has a valid license for building an addition and obtains a permit before starting construction. If you are remodeling an existing space, it will depend on the type of work being done. Most counties have certain items that require a permit, such as adding plumbing, demolition of a wall, or new electrical wiring. Check with your local permitting office to find out the specifics.
- Many areas have zoning laws and code requirements. A licensed professional contractor will have a firm understanding of these. Discuss this with your contractor prior to building.
- A dumpster may be parked on your driveway for the duration of the job. If so, you will not be able to get in or out of your garage, and your concrete driveway may crack.
- DIY may be cheaper but will leave you with a mess, clean-up, and no warranty. It will also be a time-consuming project that may cost you more in the long run.
- Child-Proof Home Office to keep little ones safe. Outlet covers protect children from playing with exposed sockets. Cables and wires shouldn’t be loose but instead secured and hidden from view. Use furniture corner pads to protect from lacerations on sharp corners. Also, never leave a paper shredder unattended. Most importantly, you need to secure heavy furniture pieces to the wall as a way to prevent them from falling over.
- Is it cheaper to add on or build up?
It is almost always cheaper to add on than to build up. The average cost for an add on is $20,000, while a build up’s average cost is $44,500.
- How can I extend my house cheaply?
A less expensive extension would be a bump-out. A bump-out is smaller than an addition and uses the existing foundation and roof to enlarge a room of your home. The cost for a bump-out is $17,000-$30,000.
- Is adding an addition worth it?
Adding an addition is a great way to increase the value of your home. It usually requires a sacrifice on the homeowner’s part because your home will be noisy and messy for several weeks.
- How long does it take to add a room to a house?
Depending on the scope of the project, it takes around 1-2 months. If the weather does not cooperate, it could be longer.
- How do I plan an addition to my house?
Consulting with a professional contractor will give you the direction you need to add an addition. They will walk you through the process and stay on top of the details for you.
- How far can you bump-out a room?
A bump-out room can go out about 2-3 feet.
- How do I estimate the building costs?
Your contractor will help you with an estimate. As you make choices, they can advise you on ways to stay within your budget. The cost depends on the flooring, fixtures, roofing, and other options.
- Does a house extension add value?
When you add square footage to your home, it will most likely add value. This is because the value is calculated by the square footage. Additionally, having a home office provides value for potential buyers who are looking for this specific upgrade.
- Should I build an addition or move?
If you love your current home, it may be better to stay and add an addition, particularly if you have space to add on.
- How do you pay for a room addition?
Banks and credit unions lend money for home additions. You can use a credit card as well but will most likely pay a higher interest rate than with a loan or line of credit.