There are many benefits of working from home, such as having more flexibility and not having to commute to work everyday. However, working from home also means that there are certain factors that you need to consider. Whether you run your own business or you work as a freelancer, working from home is not as simple as just walking from your bedroom to your office.
Here is everything you need to know about turning your home into an efficient and productive work environment.
Choose the right office space
The first important factor that you need to consider when working from home is deciding where you are going to work from. The type of office space you need in your home will depend entirely on the kind of work that you do. If you are a freelancer writer, it can be quite easy for you to work on your laptop in different areas of your home. However, if you are a designer who needs studio space, then your office requirements might be slightly different. Wherever you choose to work from, you need to make sure that you are comfortable and that you have plenty of space to work with.
After you have chosen your work location, you need to start turning it into a proper work environment. If you intend on spending most of your day working there, it is beneficial if you make the space as comfortable as possible. High-quality office furniture such as a sturdy desk and a comfortable desk chair are just some items that you might want to consider for your work space. Many self-employed people tend to benefit from having a printer, landline phone and filing cabinets close by for all of their business needs.
Make sure you have a good internet connection
When you are working from home one of the most important features you will need is a good internet connection. All businesses require a good internet connection to be able to conduct research, organise invoices, email or telephone customers. Even if you don’t have a home office to work in, having a consistent and reliable internet connection for your laptop, mobile or computer is a must. It is also important to consider the amount of data you will be using as well. Some broadband providers may still have data caps, so it is always best to make sure that you are not exceeding your data limit.
If you are using the internet a lot when working from home it might be useful to look into business packages that internet providers can provide you. Where these packages won’t affect your internet speed, they do offer more support than normal internet packages. In the event of an outage or service interruption, individuals with internet business packages are often prioritised over other customers.
Consider insurance that you might need
If you are self-employed and working from home it is important that you are properly insured. While insurance for the self-employed can sometimes be difficult to understand, it is crucial and most importantly there to protect you. Self-employed insurance is also there to protect you against the unexpected. If you have to stop working due to a long-term illness, then self-employed insurance will provide you with the right cover you need when you are out of work.
It is always useful to check whether you need extra insurance when you work from home, but you also might already be covered as part of your home insurance policy. Be sure to check as sometimes insurance coverage for your home might not extend to cover your business needs. Even if your existing insurance policy covers you, you should always contact your provider to let them know you are working from home. If you do happen to need extra cover, it is usually classified under business with visitors, clerical, or other business use. Whether you are a self-employed hairdresser or you make and sell crafts, it is always best to have insurance cover if you are working from your own home.
You may need access to a landline phone
While many people are now reliant on mobile phones, it can still be useful to have access to a landline when working from home. The problem with using a mobile phone for work is that it’s likely to be on charge much of the time if you are using it a lot for your business. A landline phone can provide you with better sound quality and it’s also likely that your internet access needs a landline in order to work.
If you have a home office in your house, it might also be better to have a separate dedicated landline for your office. This way you won’t have a lot of incoming business calls coming through on your personal home phone line. An office landline will also work in your favour when you are finished work for the day. You can easily enable voicemail on your home office line so that your home phone won’t be constantly ringing for business inquiries.
** This is a guest post **