Are both you and your spouse, significant other, or room mate working from home?
If both of you are working from home, then it is important to have a workspace that works well for both of you.
There is a strategy for how you set up your home office when you’re both working from home.
Because both you and the other person working from home need to be productive, organized , and comfortable in order to get work done, there needs to be some thought put into what type of space will work best for each of you.
If you’re looking for a solution to this problem, then read on. In this article, I’ll share how you can create a home office for two people without breaking the bank. This will allow you to enjoy your home office while also having a productive workspace where you can focus on your job.
Real quick, before we get too far into it here, if you want to get more great ideas for your gaming room or home office and want to connect with other home office hackers to make your space the best join my free private Facebook group, Home Office Hacks here.
Home office setup tips & ideas for two people
Having a home office set up for two requires each person to have their own workspace in one room. Yes, this means that the room will need to be sizeable enough for two people to work together peacefully. That is why we will go over the following tips that will help you come up with the best setup for both you and your spouse (who may also be working from home).
Let’s take a look at the following suggestions and tips so you can do this without a hitch.
Creative design options for your home office
The design of your setup will depend on the size of the office space the two of you are sharing. One of you may be considering the option of a corner desk, or you two may agree on doing a double desk setup. Either way, discuss what the ideal setup may be for the two of you. Both of you may need additional space for teleconference-ready monitors. One of you may also need a bit more workspace than expected. Both of you may need room to take notes or store files.
The perfect home office setup can be a challenge while the idea is still in the design stages. That’s why it is important to take your time and consider all of your options. One of you may agree on certain setup ideas, but one of you may need more space than the other. It may also be the care that you both need equal space. This is why it is important to make your measurements as accurate as possible; that way everyone has their ideal amount of space to work at.
Accurate measurements will also help you make decisions on the size of the desks you plan on buying. Keep track of the measurements for the entire space. It will give you a good idea of how big of a desk is good enough (and which may be over the limit in terms of space). You do not want to squeeze two large desks into a small room, or you may find yourself squished for space and aggravated at both your work and your spouse.
Create a dedicated home office space that you both can work in
It is always a good idea to make sure you each have a dedicated space while you are both working. You can even have completely different office designs all in the same room. It is important that you both feel comfortable in your joint office since that will help your level of productivity. This means incorporating the wants of both parties who will be sharing the space. You might prefer working with an external monitor while the other would prefer an ultrawide monitor as part of their setup.
It is important to measure out the room your home office will be set up in. Consider each of your options on what to include in the setup. You could consider putting together coworking spaces on a strictly temporary basis. You may also want to try working at a dining table in your kitchen or dining room. It may be a challenge because of the small amount of space, but it will only be a temporary solution until everything else is all set up in your office space.
You two might each have a 16-inch MacBook pro that you can take with you if needed. The great thing about working remotely does not always mean working from home. It can be any place where you can get a strong WiFi connection. Many remote workers enjoy working from local coffee shops or bookshops. Of course, if you are needing more than one monitor to work efficiently, working away from home or only on a laptop may not be a viable option.
Put together a checklist of things you will both need in your home office
When you are in the process of setting up your home office for two, it’s important to go over what each of you needs. At the very least, the essentials should include one each of the following:
- Office chairs
- External monitors (including primary monitor)
- Surge protector
- Desk lamp
- Desk mount
- USB-C hub
- Light sources
- Desktop PC (including dual monitor bundles, if needed)
- Desk chair
- Your choice of a desk (including a double desk, corner desk, adjustable desk, etc.)
These are just some of the things you will want to have in each of your office setups. Beyond that, it’s up to you what you could add on at this point. You may want a chair that has an adjustable height. You may want dual or extra-wide monitors for your office set up. You may also want a standing desk that will be comfortable for your ergonomic setup. The desk height can be adjusted to a point where you can sit down or stand up depending on your level of comfort. This means that you will be able to maintain great posture and back health even while working from home.
Be sure that you have space for movement
Working from home will require both of you to be behind a desk and in front of a computer for much of the day. That’s why it is important for you both to move around and make sure you get the exercise you need. Be sure to take walks together and get your minds off work for a bit. Perhaps even schedule a break or two throughout the day to watch a few minutes of your favorite show or fix some lunch. Most importantly, set a schedule to stop working. One of the most common complaints of remote workers is that they find it hard to stop working when their day is done.
Make sure your home office is comfortable for both of you
There are several reasons why you need to be comfortable while you are working. Being in a comfortable position will ensure that your back, wrists, shoulders, and neck all maintain a healthy position. It will also help improve your productivity if you maintain an ergonomic position while working. That is why both of you need to focus on ergonomics. The more ergonomic-friendly your office setup is, the less likely you will have to deal with carpal tunnel syndrome or other conditions.
The perfect home office setup doesn’t have to be perfect in terms of looks. But it needs to be as ergonomic-friendly as possible so you don’t suffer from the short-term or long-term effects. As mentioned above, staying as ergonomic-friendly as possible will also help you increase your productivity while you are working. There are a few tips and tricks to keep in mind while trying to be ergonomic in your office setups. For example, you will want to do and not do the following:
- Work at the proper height. Working at the correct height includes having the right desk and having your chair adjusted to the right setting. Make sure that your shoulders, elbows, and wrists are able to naturally relax. Otherwise, you may risk carpal tunnel syndrome.
- An office chair is your friend. If you have an office chair already, put it to good use. If it looks like it is time for a new chair, find one that will be comfortable and as ergonomically friendly as possible. The perfect home office setup includes an office chair you would look forward to sitting in for a long day.
- Never use your couch as a workstation. As tempting as it may be to relax on your couch while working, leave it and your coffee table as the place in your house where you relax and enjoy yourself. Working from your couch can cause you to hunch over, which can cause quite a bit of pain and strain on your body.
- Walk around. Take regular breaks and make sure you give your body some love. Being sedentary for a long period of time will cause health issues both in the short and long term. Creative professionals may be immersed in their projects for longer than some other professionals, but even they need to get a rest every hour or so.
- Abide by the 20/20/20 rule. The 20/20/20 rule means for every 20 minutes you look at your computer screen, look at something that is 20 feet away and keep your eyes on it for 20 seconds. This has been shown to be a proven way to keep eye strain at bay.
Examples of shared home offices
If you are like a lot of people out there, it may seem a little daunting to completely transform an entire room from its original use to a shared office space. Luckily, this is not a new concept. There are plenty of examples of ways that this can be done. Whether you are wanting something that is minimalist and that takes up a small amount of space, or you are wanting something a little more complex, you are sure to be able to find a suitable example to go off of. Let’s take a quick look at some popular examples of shared home office spaces.
T-shaped desk home office design. This simple yet stylish desk will be an instant hit in any room. The sleek lines of its clean natural finish make it perfect for modern spaces or traditional homes alike. In addition, you will both have plenty of room to work without tripping over each other.
Floating shelves home office design. Adding in some floating shelves for extra storage and adding in some LED lighting can be a fantastic way to make sure you’ve both got plenty of light and space to work from home.
Built-ins and back-to-back shared home office.
The built-in shelves provide ample storage space for books, magazines, and accessories. The open shelving allows for additional display space. Built-ins are great if you plan on sharing the space with others. They allow for privacy and security. You can easily hide items behind them if needed.
This is a very unique and creative solution. It provides a large workspace for multiple users.
Corner desk home office shared space design. A corner desk is a great choice for those who want a smaller footprint. It does not require as much floor space, making it ideal for rooms that have limited space. A corner desk also offers a great view of the room. If you prefer to have a window in your office, then you should consider getting one. Corner desks come in many different styles and sizes.
Shared desk in front of a window. This setup gets bonus points for style if your house or apartment is equipped with a large, panoramic window. Find you a long desk, or two identical desks to set side by side in front of your window. Imagine waking up every morning and opening the blinds in front of your desk. Not only will you have plenty of space for both you and your partner to work, but you will also have beautiful (and hopefully interesting) things to look at throughout the day.
Zebra-themed shared office space. Let’s say that you have all of your equipment ready for your home office, and now you are just looking for decoration ideas. Look no further than a zebra-themed office space. This look is fairly easy to achieve, simply add in white and black furniture and accents, and you will be well on your way. The more actual zebra-inspired art and trinkets you are able to add, the better.
Back-to-back shared office space. This quirky home office setup is very easy to achieve: simply set your two desks on opposite walls in your room and voila! With your backs facing each other, there is less of a chance that you will get distracted by one another. Back-to-back setups can also appeal to those who want to feel like they have their very own space. Not being able to see their spouse can give them a sort of “out of sight, out of mind” feel to their office space.
Wave-shaped shared office space. Get yourself some curved desks and stop worrying about those awkward corners in the room you plan to use for your shared office space. This is a great setup if one of you (or both of you) need a little additional space since this is easily added with larger curved desks. Using curved desks will also give you a somewhat enclosed feel to your office, ensuring that you feel close to your partner as you both work.
Spare wall shared office space. This may be the easiest shared home office space possible, so it is perfect for those of you who are minimalists and also for those of you who prefer to do the least amount of work. All you need is a spare wall and matching desks set up side by side. If you want to add a little pizazz, you can consider some fun wallpaper to go in front of your desks. This setup will ensure that you both have plenty of space to enjoy working together.
Modern-farmhouse shared office space. This is another shared office space that is a great idea for those of you who enjoy the style aspect of creating a new space. With an interesting mix between a modern style and a farmhouse style, this office space is sure to impress anyone who catches a glimpse of it, either in real life or through a virtual meeting. Simple, matching white desks and ergonomic chairs will be all that you need to achieve this look. Make sure to throw in some wood accents for that classic farmhouse style.
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