Modern Home Office Design
The way we work has changed for good.
COVID-19 may have been the initial reason employees started working from home, but many won’t be coming back to the office five days per week. 40% of Americans prefer to work from home full-time, and 35% prefer a hybrid model.
That means they need a workspace at home.
The increase in remote work provides a great opportunity for professional interior designers and homeowners alike: designing the perfect modern home office.
Setting your laptop on the kitchen counter just doesn’t cut it anymore. People need comfortable, professional, and attractive workspaces in their homes, and they’re willing to pay for them.
This article presents the top tips for how to style a modern home office that’s both stunning and functional.
Read also – Best Office Interior Design Ideas
What is a modern home office?
The home office has been around for a long time.
In Victorian times, many wealthy homes had a library — a room full of books and other paraphernalia that typically served as a home office for the man of the house.
But in the 20th century, the concept began to fall out of favor. By midcentury, only 1 in 10 homes had an office. Homes were smaller, and open floor plans grew in popularity. The home office didn’t fit in.
Now, home offices are making a comeback, and they have a whole new look.
Some of the changes are practical.
Most of us work primarily on computers these days. We may or may not line our shelves with books, but a monitor at a comfortable height and good lighting for Zoom calls are more important considerations.
There’s also a fun side to the changes. The rigid Victorian sensibility is no more.
Rather than a purely functional space, people are investing in home offices with a modern and creative aesthetic. From bold wallpaper to zen gardens, anything is fair game in the new home office.
If you work from home or use a home office for other reasons, you’re probably getting sick of spending so much time in a boring little room. Take the opportunity to make it your own.
And if you work in interior design, get ready. There will be lots of demand for home office updates in the upcoming years.
Read also – Home Decor Trends 2021
7 Expert Tips for Modern Home Office Design:
Your client list is filling up with remote workers looking for a home office design. Or maybe you’re just ready to give your own home office a whole new look.
So how do you go about designing a modern home office that’s both fashionable and functional?
1. Prioritize practicality
You’re excited about the new look you’re going to give the room — we get it. But don’t forget that a home office is a workspace first and foremost. You have to prioritize practicality.
That doesn’t mean your design has to be boring.
It just means that the foundation of your design should be functional. When you’re designing your home office, start with the requirements of a modern workspace and get creative from there.
Let’s look at one thing that absolutely every home office needs: a desk.
Where to place the desk in a home office?
No matter how perfect a desk looks in a particular spot, no one will want to sit there if it’s dark or uncomfortable.
You should place the desk as close to a natural light source as possible. If the space doesn’t get good light from a window, think about where you’ll place a floor lamp or desk lamp. You don’t want any part of the desk to be in a shadow.
Some people love to look out a window when they sit at their desks. Others find it distracting.
If placing a desk in front of the window is an option, consider your own preferences. If you’re a professional, ask your client how they feel facing a window all day.
Make sure there’s enough space around the home office desk to allow the user to move and stretch.
Modern home office storage
An office space needs lots of places to put things.
You might need storage space for office supplies, files, computer accessories, and more. Make sure your design has adequate storage options and that at least some of them are within reach of the desk.
2. Design for a small space
Home offices are often created in small rooms or even repurposed areas like an attic. When this is the case, your design should make the most out of the small space.
Less is more. Don’t overwhelm the space with a lot of small items — it may seem counterintuitive, but a few larger pieces will fit a tiny space better.
Floor space is precious in a small home office. A floating shelf unit or folding desk makes use of vertical real estate instead.
Sometimes you can save space with furniture that has multiple functions, like a bench with drawers underneath or a floor lamp with shelving at its base.
Don’t be afraid to make bold choices just because the room is small. A few statement pieces go a long way.
3. Keep it comfy
When you’re designing a work area, you should keep comfort and ergonomics in mind.
There’s a time and a place for a chair that’s more stylish than comfortable. Your home office isn’t it.
That doesn’t mean you have to choose a standard, boring office chair — comfortable chairs come in all sorts of styles and colors. Just make sure it’s a chair that you or your client could spend hours in each day.
Many people like an adjustable or standing desk these days. Find out if your client is interested in this or if they’ll be more comfortable at a traditional office desk.
Make sure there’s enough space to work. Can you reach the entire desk comfortably? Do you have room to stretch your legs?
Read also – Best Furniture Design Software
4. Make room for tech
These days, most home offices don’t need rows of file cabinets and paper storage. Instead, they need space for modern technology.
Your client probably has at least one computer monitor, maybe more. Talk to them about their work setup and choose a desk that can accommodate it.
Electrical cords running across the room are ugly. Consider the location of outlets and where the cords will have to run to reach the computer, monitor, or printer.
There are a few ways to hide unsightly cords. The most common is to run them behind furniture. Some designers even paint them to match the wall.
That’s not the only thing you can hide. A concealed location for printers or other work devices gets them out of the way so your design can take center stage.
Before you start designing your home office space, make a list of all the tech you or your client needs. Have an idea for where you can set or store each major item.
Read also – Best Computer for 3D Modeling
5. Set the mood with lighting
Lighting is often overlooked in interior design, but it can have a big impact.
Naturally, it’s important to be able to see clearly in an office, but the purpose of perfect lighting goes beyond that. Research shows that light affects cognitive performance, mood, and alertness.
For example, people are more alert in bright light. While you might choose lower light levels in a space made for relaxing, like a living room, you want to be wide awake in a home office.
Lighting can also affect your outlook. People have a less positive attitude when exposed to low, cool colored light.
Think about how the office will look at all hours. Natural light is the best, but the office should be a comfortable workspace after dark as well.
6. Encourage productivity with color
Offices are often bland, with white walls and furniture in neutral colors.
Yours doesn’t have to be.
Feel free to spice up your office design with a blast of color — just remember that color can affect the mindset of the office user.
Red evokes energy and power
Red isn’t a very popular office color — with good reason. Most people don’t find red relaxing. It brings up feelings of intensity and passion.
For the right person, red can still be a good choice for a working area. It represents ambition, drive, and energy — all good things if you want to be inspired to achieve.
Blue is tranquil
Blue is a popular color in all types of interior design. We feel calm and relaxed in a blue room, making it a common choice for doctor’s waiting rooms.
However, blue can also have a cold feel, especially light shades of blue in a room with little natural light.
Green is the color of nature
Green immediately makes us think of being outdoors. We feel calm, peaceful, and refreshed.
There may also be a cultural effect — we often use red for warnings and stop signs, while green means it’s safe to go ahead.
Yellow shines bright
Yellow is associated with happiness, excitement, and intelligence. It’s more popular for kitchens and bathrooms than offices, but it could be a good choice if your goal is to create a cheery, optimistic atmosphere.
Neutral colors are a staple for a reason
Neutral colors don’t have to be dull. They’re a classic choice that you probably won’t get sick of when trends change.
If you want a hint of color without the distraction, you could choose to do some subtle accents. Even a small amount of color will stand out against a neutral background.
Purple, pink, orange?
No color is off-limits in a modern-style office. But don’t just go with your favorite color — consider how you want to feel in your home office (or discuss it with your client). Bright, warm colors make us feel energized and lively, but they can also take away from our focus.
Cool or neutral colors are more calming, but maybe you don’t want to relax too much when you’re working hard.
Read also – The Psychology of Colors in Interior Design
7. Connect with nature
One of the biggest trends in home office design right now is incorporating nature into the room. As humans, we have an inherent need to connect with the natural world, even if we have to work inside all day.
This style is sometimes called biophilic design. It could mean using natural light and airflow, filling the space with plants, or adding water features and even aquariums.
Biophilic office design is great for our mood, mental health, and cognitive function.
How To Plan Your Modern Home Office Design?
You’ve read all our top tips for designing a home office. Now let’s get started!
Here’s how you turn your home office vision into reality.
A) Research ideas
Before you create your own design, seek inspiration.
You can start looking for modern home office ideas online. Do a simple Google image search or start pinning home office design ideas on Pinterest. There are also print magazines with images of home decor.
Ideas can come from unexpected places. What inspires you in nature? Think about using colors and shapes from those natural features. Is there a historical era you love? Maybe you could incorporate the look and feel of that time period into your design.
Of course, if you’re a professional interior designer, now is the time to gather information about what your client wants as well.
B) Create a moodboard
An interior design moodboard is a collage of images representing your ideas for a design.
If you’re designing your own space, you can make a moodboard as a way to solidify your ideas. If you have a client, a moodboard is an excellent way to communicate your ideas and get feedback from them.
When you start designing, use the moodboard as a benchmark for achieving the style you want.
C) Identify your must-haves
Before you start choosing what you want, make a list of what you need.
This can include essential office furniture like a desk and shelving. It can also include non-negotiable design elements. If a water feature is essential to your vision of a modern home office, put it on the list.
D) Use interior design software
You have a head full of ideas, a moodboard to use as a benchmark, and a list of essential elements.
It’s time to put it all together.
There are a lot of ways you could do that, but by far the most effective (and fun) is with interior design software.
You can get the plan right
You can draw the exact dimensions of your room, including doors and windows, or upload a floor plan to the software. This ensures you have an accurate understanding of how your furniture and decor will fit.
You can use pre-built 3D models
Ready to arrange furniture in your room? Just drag and drop pre-modeled products into place or upload your own. This makes it easy to play with ideas and experiment with different types of office furniture.
For example, Foyr Neo comes with 60,000+ 3D models and textures you can add to your design, including the entire home office setup shown below.
You can render your design realistically
3D rendering essentially means taking a snapshot of your design — a beautiful one that looks almost like a photograph.
Once you’ve used the interior design software to place all of your furniture and other design elements, choose an angle and lighting for your render.
Show your clients (or your friends!) exactly what your home office will look like.
The demand for modern home office designs will only grow as more people choose to work from home permanently.
Whether you’re a pro designer or a remote worker with an office that needs work, interior design software can help you create a stunning modern office design.
Foyr Neo is an all-in-one interior design software that delivers everything you need to transform your design ideas from concepts to photorealistic renders.
Get started with a free trial of Foyr Neo.