Those who work from home have a variety of reasons for doing so – perhaps you are a small business owner working from home in order to save money on an office lease, a freelancer, or a single parent looking for ways to comfortably make money whilst looking after your kids. Either way, the one thing in common that most people who work from home have is the desire to keep costs as low as possible. Just as it’s vital that a home office appears professional, it’s also important for it to be economical as possible – it’s easy not to notice expenses piling up. If you’re thinking of refurbishing or setting up a home office, here are some tips on how to do it as cheaply as possible.
The best advice that anyone working from a home office can use is to keep things simple when it comes to cutting costs. Don’t overspend money on furniture that you’ll never use, or splash out on gadgets that aren’t really that important in order to give your office a more corporate feel. Do you really need a brand new printer or could a HP printer fuser fix your old one? Create a list of ‘needs’ and ‘wants’ before you go about buying things for your new home office to ensure that you’re only spending what is absolutely necessary.
When setting up a new home office it can be tempting to impulsively splash out on buying new things for it whenever you’re out, but these costs can start to add up in the long run. Make sure that you’re clear on what your budget is and make a list of everything that you need, making sure that it all fits into the budget. Only buy the products on this list – that large wall canvas might look nice, but at $100, will it blow the budget?
If you don’t have clients visiting your office on a regular basis, there is no need to splash the cash on expensive, branded products when it’s entirely possible to purchase unbranded products at half the price that do just as good a job. Don’t be fooled into paying for a name – especially if you’re the only person who’s going to be there to be impressed by it. You can also save a lot of money by searching for second hand office equipment and supplies that are still in great, useable condition but are being sold for a fraction of the retailing price when new.
Many home office owners today are choosing to go green not only to help the environment, but also because it’s an effective strategy to save money. Using energy efficient lighting, recycling and reusing paper, and using energy efficient appliances are just some ways that you can save money by going green.
How did you save money when setting up your home office? What steps did you take in order to keep costs as low as possible, and how did they work for you? We’d love to hear from you in the comments.