After a year of being forced to work from home, a dedicated home office is high on the wishlists of many Australian homebuyers.
Demand for home office space is growing among Aussie homebuyers as COVID-19 is making many of us rethink our home priorities.
Research from the Real Estate Buyers Agents Association (REBAA) has found that a home office is third on the list of the top ten property features on buyers wishlists: two years ago, a home office didn’t even make the top ten.
The idea of a home office or study isn’t new, but with one or more people now working from home most days, having a dedicated space to work is becoming essential. But a study nook or a desk in the corner of the living room isn’t enough for many homebuyers: research indicates that most buyers are looking for a separate office away from the main living areas or a spare bedroom that can be converted into one.
Benefits of a dedicated home office
Working from home creates a huge set of challenges when you’ve got kids, pets, partners, or annoying housemates that take all their phone calls on speaker and crank up the TV when you’re clearly trying to work.
Having a dedicated office space where you can close the doors is the most ideal situation and means you can focus and work more efficiently and productively with minimal distractions.
If you don’t have space in your home for a dedicated office with a closed door, try to pick somewhere away from the main flow of traffic.
Working from the kitchen table or a desk in the main living area can blur the lines between work and home life: creating a dedicated place to work from will also help you establish an effective work from home routine because you know that’s the space you go to work, and when you close the doors at the end of the day you’re officially off duty.
Home office tax deduction
A dedicated space to work from also makes it easier to claim home office expense deductions when tax time rolls around. If you have a specific room set aside as a home office, you can more easily calculate the work related proportion of household costs than if you are using a room with a dual purpose (like the dining room) or a room shared with others because you can only claim the expenses for the hours you had exclusive use of the area.
How to decorate your home office
You’ll be spending up to eight hours a day in your office so it should be a space you enjoy being in.
Organise your space
Your office should look beautiful, but it also needs to be functional.
Make sure your desk is big enough to accommodate multiple computer screens if necessary and keep clutter to a minimum.
Plants always put me in a good mood and studies have shown that adding plants to the workplace decreases stress and boosts productivity - plus they look pretty.
If you’re not much of a green thumb, consider a low maintenance plant like a ZZ plant, cactus, snake plant or a beautiful big bird of paradise.
Invest in a good chair
You’ll be spending hours parked in that chair so it needs to be comfortable. Don’t be afraid to invest in a really good office chair - the more ergonomic the better. Ergonomic doesn’t need to mean ugly either - you can find lots of stylish ergonomic options out there.
Give yourself something nice to look at other than a blank wall by hanging your favourite artwork or creating a gallery wall.
Get a rug
A rug can help define the space and make it feel more cosy. Jute rugs are really on trend at the moment.
How to finance your home office
If you’re building a new home, we offer low-rate construction loans with a 3.47% variable interest rate (2.96% p.a. comparison rate). If you’re renovating your existing home to add a study, you can access your home equity by refinancing with us.
To find out if you’re eligible for a loan with us, chat with one of our lending specialists.
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