If you’re starting to work from home, you can create an inspiring workplace on even the tightest of budgets.
If you search carefully, you’ll find the most essential items of furniture, equipment and supplies at prices you can afford.
Here are some tips for setting up a home office on a budget.
Home Office Furniture
At the absolute minimum, you’ll need:
- a desk or table,
- a chair,
- a cupboard, filing cabinet, bookcase and/or shelves.
Look through your basement and garage to see if you can find any discarded items that could be adapted or improved. For example, you could create an attractive bookcase by removing the doors from an old cupboard and painting it to match the décor in your home office.
If you can’t find anything suitable at home, scour auctions, thrift stores, and garage sales for used office furniture in good condition.
Add your own personal style to the furniture you acquire. You could, for instance, make your own Scandinavian-style desk by sanding an old table and painting it white.
If you have a larger budget, stores such as IKEA sell attractive office furniture at reasonable prices.
Home Office Equipment
At the very least, you’ll require:
- A desktop computer or laptop
- A printer
- A cell phone.
You may already have a computer, printer and cell phone that you can use for your home-based business. If not, look for inexpensive items on eBay or at auctions.
An all-in-one printer, scanner and photocopier is a good option for a home office, so look out for one at a reasonable price.
A cell phone is all you’ll need to communicate with clients in the early stages of your business. You can add a landline at a later date, if necessary.
Search through your home for stationery and other office supplies that you already have.
Then, make a list of all the items you’ll need in the first month of working from home.
Items that are solely for your own personal use can be purchased very inexpensively from your local Dollar Store. Ensure that you stock up on the following small stationery items:
- staplers and staples
- scotch tape
- post-it notes
- document wallets
- box files
- ring binders.
You can also purchase reams of standard copier and printer paper for your own use at a Dollar Store.
When printing and sending invoices, letters and other communications with clients or potential clients, it’s a good idea to use good quality paper and envelopes. The paper should be at least a little heavier than standard copying and printing paper.
You can buy good quality paper at a reasonable price from a specialist office supplies store, such as Office Depot or Staples.
Last but by no means least, add a few items to your home office that will make it a pleasant and inspirational environment to spend time in.
Some ideas are:
- a framed quote that motivates you
- a picture or piece of artwork that inspires you
- a photo of your family
- plants or flowers
- a window blind in an attractive color
- a desk lamp
- a colorful rug
- a mirror
- storage boxes
- desk organizers.
First Things First
Setting up your own home office requires some investment. However, if you purchase only the most essential items at first, it’s possible to set up your home office on a tight budget.
You’ll be able to add extra furniture, equipment and supplies at a later date to meet the demands of your growing business.