These 3 Things Make the “Perfect” Home Office, According to Real Estate Agents

published Jun 11, 2019
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Credit: Lauren Kolyn

According to a 2017 FlexJobs survey, approximately 3.9 million U.S. employees now work from home. And who could blame them? It seems pretty cool to skip out on the drudging commute—especially if you have a picture-perfect office space carved out in your home.

But, more often than not, our in-house workspaces are less than ideal. The biggest mistake people make when picking out their home office? Thinking of it as magical, secluded space where work will get done, says Audra Walters, owner of Front Porch Properties in Charleston, South Carolina.

For example, if you have kids, it’s hard to find those moments where you can steal away and work in perfect solitude. Instead, Walters says to think of your office as a space that integrates productivity into your day-to-day. She suggests setting up a space where school-aged kids can work on their homework or where younger kids can play as you finish a few tasks.

But what else separates a so-so home office from a truly great one? Here, three features of a room that real estate agents know make a fabulous work environment:

1. It’s convertible

Ideally, your home office is a space that can be used for another purpose after the nine-to-five.

“I’ve seen people use a closet to house their home offices,” says Daniele Kurzweil, a licensed real estate salesperson with the Friedman team at Compass in New York City. “When you’re done with your work, simply slide the doors closed and—voila—out of sight out of mind! You can keep your private things private and still create a separation of space within your communal living space.”

2. It’s not too close to the kitchen or bathroom

“It’s a bad idea to locate an office near a kitchen or bathroom, which tend to be ‘high-traffic’ areas,” says Tuval Mor, a licensed real estate salesperson with the PennyMor team at Citi Habitats in New York City. “With other family members coming in and out, you’ll get distracted. So, instead, find a secluded nook off the master bedroom or in a converted attic, both of which may be more conducive to productivity.”   

3. It has good natural lighting and a view

It’s bad enough to work under fluorescent lights in an office that has a view of a brick wall. The same applies for a home office, says Andrew McDonald, director of luxury properties at The Agency, a real estate agency in Beverly Hills, California.

“Large windows, or a view that suits your personality are highly desirable,” he says. “It could be your favorite urban street, a natural landscape, a view of the water or, even, an inspirational mural on a neighboring building.”

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