5 Things to Consider When Setting Up a Home Office

How to optimize your workspace for maximum comfort and productivity.

Working from home is no longer a novelty, but setting up a home office can still feel like a struggle. Few of us had time to do it thoughtfully during the pandemic, and now you may find yourself hankering for a well-designed, more permanent location (or at least one that’s not your kitchen counter). These tips are meant to give you some food for thought and spark some ideas for revamping your nine-to-five space.

Creating a new work from home setup or looking for ways to improve your existing home office? Read our guide for practical tips and principles.

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Tips for setting up a home office


Before you start browsing Pinterest for ideas, think about the most practical location in your home where you can do your best work. If you have the luxury of a spare room — a space with a door that you can close at the beginning and end of the day — it may help you establish boundaries, eliminate distractions, and keep some distance between work and home life.

If you are in a small apartment or studio, pick a space with the most natural light, ideally one that’s furthest away from the kitchen and sleeping area, and invest in some affordable room dividers. You may not be able to walk away from your home office entirely, but not having your computer visible during your off hours can help you decompress. Most importantly, pick a space you like. Maybe the den is the most practical place for a work area, but what if you absolutely can’t stand being there for eight hours? Try finding a balance between practicalities and personal preferences so you can enjoy setting up your home office in this new space.

Ergonomics and furniture

Getting the right furniture for your workspace is part science, part art. Think about logistics (e.g. if you are working in the corner of your living room, investing in an L-shaped desk might not be the best solution). At the same time, don’t forget to take into account your comfort and taste. Some questions to ask yourself when buying office furniture:

  • “Do I want a standing desk, a regular desk, or an adjustable one?” Standing desks are becoming more affordable, but if you’re trying to stick to a budget, getting an adjustable monitor stand could be a nice middle-ground solution.
  • “Do I want an ergonomic, gamer, or kneeling chair?” Or maybe you’d prefer a stability ball. Or a bar stool. When you’re setting up a home office for remote work, there are many more options than the standard office wheeler, though Mayo Clinic does suggest getting something that provides back support and can be adjusted to a proper height for your desk.
  • “How will I manage cords, documents, and other items I plan to keep at my desk?” Trade paper copies and filing cabinets for digitization and a space-saving scanner. Keep cords out of the way and out of sight with a cord management system.

Your must-have tools

Decide which tools you’ll need to thrive at work. Maybe you have a penchant for gadgets and want to invest in all the hard drives and headphones and web cameras. Or perhaps you’re a minimalist who prefers a monitor-mouse-keyboard ensemble and little else on your desk. Start with the basics, like your computer tower or laptop, monitor, keyboard, mouse, and headphones and build from there. You should also consider how you’ll manage documents without access to an industrial printer or scanner commonly found in offices. Purchasing a powerful but compact scanner or a scanner-printer can save you time on running to the copy shop in the middle of an otherwise productive work day.

Did You Know?:Some scanners are specially designed for home officers with easy-to-use compact designs. Click here to learn what you should look for in a home scanner.


No matter how much time you spend setting up a home office, there will come a point when you’ll need to get some work done outside of your carefully curated space. Whether it’s because you’re traveling or simply want to spend a day working at a coffee shop with a friend, investing in some portable tools adds an element of flexibility to your work life.

Portable monitors are a great way to work anywhere comfortably (in other words, not having to squint at a laptop screen). Some models, such as the RICOH wireless portable monitors weigh just over a pound (150 model), can easily be stashed into a workbag, and come with a touchscreen, so you don’t need to worry about bringing along a clunky computer mouse. Some other remote work pack-and-go essentials include a portable laptop charger and noise-canceling headphones.


The best part about setting up a home office is that your coworkers only need to see a tiny slice of your space. If you want to cover your walls in movie posters, have pink everything, install a disco ball, or turn the room into a houseplant jungle — good news. You can do just that. Set the tone you want in your day with decor that makes you happy and grounded. And remember that even if you get tired of your current decor in a few months, one of the joys of working remotely is that you get to change up your space whenever inspiration strikes.

Did You Know?:We created a complete checklist of work-from-home equipment you’ll need. Take a look.

Our recommendation: ScanSnap iX1400

We know you have no shortage of options when it comes to choosing a home document scanner. We pride ourselves on having spent the last 50+ years designing and developing some of the most beloved electronics in the world, including our line of award-winning, easy-to-use, one-touch ScanSnap scanners.

The ScanSnap iX1400 is an efficient, compact scanner that digitizes receipts, reports, and even documents with sticky notes to help you capture your best ideas. Its one-touch design is user-friendly and ideal for a home office setup. Click here to learn more and shop the full line of ScanSnap scanners.

Note: Information and external links are provided for your convenience and for educational purposes only. PFU America, Inc. makes no representations about the contents, features, or specifications on such third-party sites, software, and/or offerings (collectively “Third-Party Offerings”) and shall not be responsible for any loss or damage that may arise from your use of such Third-Party Offerings.