With so many of us working from home more often in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, finding a separation between the two areas of our life can prove difficult. Of course, we’re no longer forced to make that tedious commute five times a week – saving us time and money – but doing our jobs remotely means the lines between the personal and the professional can easily become blurred.
A huge contributing factor is the physical space within which we operate. If that’s an area of your home that you use regularly – the kitchen or the living room, for example – those constant reminders of work are not easy to escape.
That’s partly why there’s been a significant rise in shed and garage conversions – although this has also contributed to a spike in outbuilding fires across the UK. If you want to create a designated workspace that’s separate from the home but doesn’t involve a long commute, here are a few handy tips to help you along the way.
Prepare the area
If your garden hasn’t received much care and attention recently, you might need to first set about creating the space for your outdoor office. Get rid of any overgrown foliage, branches and general vegetation using a combination of secateurs, saws, scythes and even a cordless chainsaw for any heavy-duty jobs.
Plan your space
Before you move into the construction phase, it’s important that you’re working to a detailed plan. Figure out how much floor space you’ll need as well as making room for any items of furniture. Is it just a desk and chair you require? Or does your occupation mean you need more specialist equipment such as a workbench or high-spec lighting?
Make it comfortable
It’s likely to become a permanent set-up, so you need to make sure your garden office is an enjoyable place to spend your time. Insulate the walls and ceiling with at least four-inch foam or fibreglass sheets, before covering with plasterboard. Plastering is a difficult skill, so it’s best to call in a professional plasterer, and from there you can decorate in a way that will aid your productivity without causing a distraction. You should also consider heating options while making sure they do not pose a fire hazard.
Get kitted out
Once all that’s done, you’ll need to make sure you have all the tech you need to get started. You could consider hooking up to the mains electricity directly, or running an extension lead from the house if suitable. You’ll also need a WiFi booster to ensure you can connect to the internet via your home network.
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