If you’re a parent like me and work from home permanently, a stylish home office is probably right down at the bottom of the “Things-to-do-when-I-have-extra-cash” list. But creating a space that encourages serenity and productivity can be super simple to do with these home office ideas on a budget.
In this article, I’ll share 12 home office ideas on a budget for women that will help you create a beautiful home office without breaking the bank.
Side note – if you’re looking for something a little more light and fun, this blog on the “32 Best Desk Gadgets – Fun & Function for the Home Office” is worth checking out. 😉
As we spend most of our time in our home office, it’s important to create a space that is peaceful, comfortable, and encourages creativity and productivity.
Finding a home office spot that works for you is essential and a few simple changes to your home office décor can help you avoid feeling cluttered, flustered, and yelling: “Serenity now!” at the top of your lungs.
Creating an inexpensive home office doesn’t need to be done overnight. Take your time and add to your home office as your budget allows. Keep these 12 home office ideas on a budget in mind.
The first on the list for home office ideas on a budget is an important one. Before setting up your home office, you’ll need to give some serious thought to its location. A well-located office (or workspace or two) will create a conducive working environment for you.
When thinking about an office layout, focus on your needs. For example, if you are someone who is easily distracted or needs “focused” work time, you’ll definitely need a quiet space and an empty spare room will be the best choice. Being able to close the door for a couple of hours will make the world of difference to your productivity and your virtual meetings.
Don’t have an extra room in your house? No problem. Like the image above, no matter the size of your home, with a bit of creativity, you’ll be able to create a corner of your bedroom or anywhere for that matter into your ideal home office.
Before you enthusiastically start moving your desk, chair, and other office items to your new workplace, plan how you can best use your office space or corner.
If you want to avoid spending the day shuffling furniture like these wooden building blocks, you will need to take a few measurements of the space you will use and figure out the best position for each item.
Work out the best spot for your desk or table, your chair, and any other equipment that you have. While some folk like to work facing a wall, others prefer to look out of a window or across the lounge.
Keep in mind plug points… there’s nothing worse than arranging all your home office furniture only to find that there’s no power in that particular spot!
Also, make sure there’s no glare on your screen or reflection from lights or outside lighting. This can be very tiring on your eyes and, initially, you might not notice it until you find you have a headache or very tired eyes.
Lastly, make sure there’s enough space to move around easily so that you don’t feel crowded or need to navigate through a number of obstacles to get to your desk.
Good lighting is one of the most important aspects to consider when designing your office. Poor lighting can dampen your mood, cause eye strain, headaches, and even reduce your energy.
To keep natural light flowing into your room, ensure all window areas are unobstructed. Sunlight is warm lighting that will naturally lift your spirits and help you feel more productive. You can also look outside and give your eyes a break from the screen.
In cases where you don’t have enough natural light, consider artificial lights. Be sure to choose a light that works for you and fits into your budget. Selecting a desk lamp will be more affordable than re-installing overhead lighting. But, sometimes swapping out a different color lightbulb can make a world of difference too.
You might also give your office decorative lighting to improve its visual appeal. Using picture lights can also be a good idea, as it draws attention to objects in the room and sometimes a standing lamp or two can create a great ambiance.
One of the best ways to create an inexpensive home office is to refurbish or repurpose the furniture you already have… also known as upcycling. When we moved into our new home, the previous owners left behind a huge heavy dining room table, so I repurposed our old table (similar to the one above) for a desk that’s large enough to hold my adjustable standing desk with extra room on the side.
If you’re into a little DIY, doing a few trips to secondhand stores or markets is a great way to pick up affordable furniture. All it takes is a little sandpaper, varnish, and the proverbial elbow grease to bring new life to old furniture.
Here are some ideas:
Although this article is about home office ideas on a budget, one piece of advice that I can give is to do some research before you purchase a home office chair and don’t choose the cheapest option.
When we first started investing in our home office, we enthusiastically found the most affordable office chairs we could find. Unfortunately, they weren’t as adjustable as they should have been so my back got super sore and after a couple of months they started to fall apart.
Needless to say, the office chairs are now in storage and up for donation. I use a simple dining room chair with a scatter cushion that works for me and I try to stand for some of my day.
If you’re going to be investing in a home office chair, look for one that’s fully adjustable and will fit beautifully into your home office. We have a few articles on our blog with some gorgeous chairs that are stylish and won’t break your budget.
If you’re planning to spend some of your workday standing, it might be worth investing in a yoga ball as a chair instead or repurposing a dining room chair as I have done. A bright scatter cushion or two can make an ordinary chair look great.
Curtains can make a world of difference to a room and you don’t need to break the bank to purchase expensive ones.
Look for colors that can go with any color scheme. Here are few aspects to consider:
Fabric: Choose fabrics that are low maintenance and are easy to clean. If you are a busy work-from-home mom, you’ve probably already ditched the ironing so why spend your days ironing curtains? Look for non-iron fabrics that can be washed in the washing machine or sent to be cleaned.
Color: Color can easily affect your productivity and concentration. Therefore, pick colors that you love and make you feel positive.
Insulation: If you live in a home that doesn’t have central heating, then thicker curtains will be great for winter and even keeping out the heat in summer. They help maintain a comfortable working environment, given that temperatures are likely to fluctuate from time to time.
Curtain hooks versus bands: Back in the day, you could only find curtains that had curtain hooks. The longest aspect of curtain hanging used to be finding and then inserting the hooks, only to find that you had to undo them and reinsert them because the spacing was incorrect. I think I wasted days doing this! Some modern curtains just come with bands of fabric that slide over the curtain rail. Trust me, it will seriously save you time.
Along with the theme of repurposing furniture, you can also repurpose household items for an inexpensive home office. Like the photograph above, simple tins can make great pen holders, and random planks can be glued together to make a laptop stand.
Here are a few more ideas and you can even rope the kids in if they’re into arts and crafts:
A few key purchases to decorate your home office can make it stylish and elegant. For example, the little plants above will look great on your desk or even your office bookshelf.
Here are a few more ideas:
If your home office seems cluttered, use some of these ideas to help improve the organization of your workspace.
The first step is to go through everything you already have in your home office.
You’ll need to put these items into groups — those to keep and those you don’t need. This way, you will easily get rid of things that you no longer require. Recycle old papers, donate unused office equipment to charity and clean out the clutter.
Office shelf organization ideas can significantly help you save on space and keep your office organized. It’s worth purchasing some bookshelves or even a bookcase plus a few home office storage containers.
For example, in the photograph above, simple wicker baskets have been used for storage. There’s also a basket underneath the desk that could double up as a footrest.
Artwork doesn’t necessarily mean heading out to your local gallery and investing in a painting — of course, if that works for you, totally go for it. As this article is on home office ideas on a budget, simple prints and photographs can bring color and life to your office too.
In the home office above, I love the way simple graphics have been put onto a corkboard that’s painted white. This is a great option if you are renting and can’t put up hooks for paintings.
The picture above is also a good example of office bookshelf decorating ideas. Note the mirrors at the top, the simple yet elegant gift boxes for storage, and the use of plants. I also love the way the white color scheme brings light to the workspace.
Talking about bringing light into your home office, mirrors are fairly affordable and even if you can’t mount one on the wall, you could get a standing mirror that can double up as a way to check your outfit.
Here are a few more reasons to consider having a mirror in your office:
Maximize lighting: Mirrors reflect light that comes into a room, so you won’t have to turn the lights on during the day. This will not only make the room visible but also help you save on energy costs.
Creates an illusion of space: A mirror can make your office appear to be more spacious than it actually is. For example, if you have a small room, hang a mirror on the wall or place a large mirror in the room. Plus, if you’re a mom and need “eyes at the back of your head” a mirror is a good option.
Practical use: Yes, we’ve all been there… about to jump onto a Zoom call and then dashed madly to the nearest mirror for that last-minute check. A mirror in your home office can be very useful.
We’ve already touched on this but bringing some greenery into your home office is a lovely way to bring a sense of calmness. Some plants also keep the air clean and help boost oxygen levels during the day.
Not all of us have green fingers (sadly I definitely don’t), so even putting greenery into vases instead of flowers is a great way to bring some nature inside. Of course, there are also artificial plants available that can be very lifelike and, the best part is, there’s no watering or maintenance required.
One of the many benefits of working from home is being able to create a space you love where you can work in peace and be productive. The above 12 ideas are just some of the ways that you can achieve this in your home office when the budget is tight.
Let your home office be somewhere you always want to be by making it warm and inviting. And before long, you will be amazed by your productivity and creativity. You’ll probably find the rest of the family hanging out with you and enjoying the space as well.
I encourage you to implement some of them to make your home office organized and gorgeous.
I hope you enjoyed some of these ideas. Feel free to share this post with your friends and family members who might be looking for home office ideas on a budget for women, we’d greatly appreciate it.