For Your Home’s Value
The pace of work in Silicon Valley is often the topic of national magazine articles such as Fortune, ComputerWorld, and Money. We’re not strangers to being “on” 24/7. Telecommuting is common. So is working after we’ve arrived home for the night. For many home buyers having a space dedicated as a home office is often at the top of their wish list.
Not convinced that a home office adds value? Here are a few interesting facts:
- Workers on average would take an 8% pay cut if they could work from home according to joint Harvard and Princeton study.
- According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 24% of employed people did some or all of their work at home in 2015.
- 3.7 million employees now work from home at least half the time according to GlobalWorkplaceAnalytics.com’s latest telecommuting statistics.
- 80-90% of the U.S. workforce would like to telework two to three times a week.
- FlexJobs, a service dedicated to listing telecommuting, flexible schedule, part-time and freelance work opportunities saw a 36% increase. Companies such as Amazon, IBM, Dell, Intuit, and Shutterstock made their top 100 client list.
Creating an Attractive & Productive Home Office
- Less Clutter – with the use of technology, the need for paper is reduced. Bulky filing cabinets are out and the minimalist look is “in.” Use equipment that has multiple functions and store them in cabinets to reduce visual clutter. Hiding unsightly wires is now easier with wireless technology. Have a small space? Utilize space vertically as well as horizontally.
- Computer screens rather than a TV – now that streaming is mainstream and more consumers are cutting the cord, our screen time is switching from TVs to monitors and mobile devices. Big-screen TVs are now smart and are moving to the living room rather than a home office. Of course, there are exceptions when the home office doubles as a man cave 😉 For those who exclusively work from home, multiple screens are common. New on the market are curved, ultra-wide monitors which provide the best of all worlds: one screen, the ability to have multiple workspaces, and a sleek design.
- Less office like and more living space – making a home office as a getaway space that’s healthy (hydraulic desks that transition from sitting to standing), comfortable couches for visitors and power naps, and other ways to integrate California living aesthetics are more desirable.
- Separate & quiet – if your property’s footprint is large enough, having a separate space is capturing our home office imaginations. Similar to a tiny house, Studio Shed is a company developing prefab structures designed to accommodate electrical hookups that offer the convenience of working from home but without the distractions.
- Lighting, Color & Views – Take advantage of natural light whenever possible. For evening work, make sure there’s sufficient lighting to avoid eye strain. Painting walls a color you love will make the space more inviting. A bright and comfortable space aids in productivity. Lastly, if you can position your desk so you have a view, all the better. For windowless rooms, well-placed artwork can provide the visual appeal you need.
Home Offices & Real Estate Value
While adding a home office can add an attribute you can leverage when selling, keep in mind some things not to do:
- Don’t remove the closet. A closet is one the elements needed to designate a room as a bedroom. The number of bedrooms is directly tied to home value.
- Don’t convert the garage by walling up the roll up door. If your garage is the only space for a home office, make only superficial changes rather than structural ones. That way buyers have the option of converting it back into a usable garage.
- Avoid crazy or fad colors. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Love lime green? If you must paint your space with unusually bright colors, be prepared to repaint before you sell.
Photo credit: Nick Keppol