Home Office Nook: Taking Care of Business

home office NookOne of the more sought-after spaces in a home is an office or home office nook. It could be for the purpose of running a home based business or a designated place to do household business. However, with the average home around 2,400 square feet, many homeowners lack the space for this specific room. Those greedy rooms called the bedroom, the family room, the kitchen, and dining areas can eat up valuable square footage. So from a design perspective, we have to be creative.  Instead of thinking about a room, try thinking about a nook…a home office nook! Since your home based business isn’t a fortune 500 company, a small alcove of sorts would serve you well.

Office nooks are sometimes considered workstations. Like workstations, office nook designs are often in an a straight line or L-shape. It provides enough desk space and cabinet storage to operate many task. By condensing such a limited amount of work space, not much room or square footage is needed for your nook. It is a good use of space from a design standpoint, giving more value to your home.

Sizing your home office nook

home office nook under staircaseWhen working with a limited amount of design space in your home, think of all the equipment and furniture you will need to make the work space right for you. You will likely need room for your computer (desktop and/or laptop), a printer/copier combo, a desk, chair, cabinet storage, bookshelves, and other less typical items that may be specific to your needs. Use the size of these pieces to establish guidelines in your design layout and nook size.

Another way to control the size of your office nook is to design the space with built-in furniture. A straight or L-shape desk with base cabinets that include a filing cabinet is a good example. Above the desk you can add wall cabinets with shelving for books and other items that need storing. Because the desk, cabinets, and shelves use a wall as an anchor, not much space is needed to add a chair and a walk path to move around. A practical size for this type of arrangement can be as small as 5’x6′, a mere 30 square feet. In fact, the nook can even have a door for privacy if the entire floor plan is designed with forethought.

Office nook ideas

home office nook in closetExamples of office nook ideas include using the space underneath a staircase or an unused small storage space. In both cases, the space can be open or you can hide the work space behind a closed door until you need to use it.

The kitchen is another area where a nook for an office can be implemented, especially if you have a large kitchen design. I would be remiss if I didn’t mentioned the breakfast room. Depending on the size of the space, built-ins can be designed within the room to provide a comfortable workstation.

Though the space of an office nook is limited, the possibilities of squeezing one into your home design is not. With a little forward thinking and ingenuity, who knows what can happen with 30 square feet.

On a side note, one of my stock plans the Symone has a “work station”, aka home office nook. This design exhibits a good example of how to include a work space in a small home. Before going to the page to see the plan, take another look at the picture of the office nook at the top of this article. It is virtually the concept I had envisioned during the design of the Symone floor plan and its 30 plus sq ft office nook.