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Remote work is here to stay, which means it’s time to swap your makeshift desk for something more dignified. Upgrading your home office isn’t just good ergonomics, however. Home offices are also among the hottest housing trends today. Whatever you invest in your home office, you’re likely to get back when you sell.

That’s not a free pass to blow your budget on splashy finishes and high-end built-ins, however. If you view the renovation as an investment, it’s important to approach your home office with ROI (return on investment) in mind. What does that mean for your home office remodel? Here are 10 Girls Nite Live-approved tips for designing a dreamy home office that adds to your home:

1. Define your space.

Will you remodel a spare room, convert a garage or basement, or build a home office addition? Don’t rule out unconventional spaces for your new home office.

2. Establish your comps.

Before going crazy on Pinterest, look at local homes like yours. What kinds of upgrades do you see in homes in your neighborhood? Pay attention to the finishes and fixtures used in comparable homes in your price range. This information will keep you from over-improving your own home.

3. Set a reno budget.

Next up, the budget. Start by prioritizing potential projects based on importance. Then, research the cost of home office projects and compare it to your budget to decide what to tackle. Cash is king, but there are decent financing options if you need more capital.

4. Start with the basics.

Some things are non-negotiable for a home office. This includes:

●  Good lighting.

●  Extra outlets.

●  Hardwired internet connection.

Most homeowners also paint and replace or refinish flooring when remodeling a room. Factor these necessary renovation costs into your budget before spending on extras.

5. Choose your aesthetic.

Bright and sunny or dark and masculine? Stately and traditional or modern and urban? You have more interior design options for your home office than you might realize. Choosing an aesthetic guides your design choices to create a cohesive look.

6. Explore built-ins.

Built-ins are the perfect alternative to clunky filing cabinets, but they can also be a risky investment. Not only are built-ins pricey (especially if you go custom), but built-ins that are too tailored could be a burden rather than a benefit to future buyers. Keep built-ins versatile with basic designs like bookcases, cabinets, and closets. Then, adapt them to your needs with custom storage solutions.

7. Opt for floating shelves.

Don’t have the space (or budget) for built-ins? Floating shelves are a budget-friendly alternative that’s ideal for small spaces. Not only are floating shelves great for storage when mounted high, but a floating shelf can also serve as a minimalist workspace for the home office.

8. Get funky with light fixtures.

If there’s one place it’s safe to get creative, it’s low-cost fixtures that are easily swapped out. Take lighting, for example. While home office lighting needs to be functional, it’s also an opportunity to make a statement. From chandeliers to pendant lights, track lighting to task lighting, there’s a lot of room to play with home office lighting.

9. Keep cable management in mind.

Even the most stylish office looks cluttered with cords and cables strewn about. Clever hacks like running cables through the desk into a hidden cabinet underneath keep cables out of sight and out of the way.

10. Add the finishing touches.

With your remodel complete, you’re left with an ideal flex space to furnish. But while furnishing your home office might not offer much in the way of ROI, it is important for your health and productivity at work. So ditch the ironing board you’ve been using as a makeshift standing desk and invest in proper ergonomics. You deserve it! 

Girls Nite Live is all about supporting women-owned businesses. And these days, a lot of women are running their businesses from home. After using these tips to (finally) get your home office up to par, visit the site to learn a new skill, connect with experts, and mingle with other women and women business owners around the globe.