Many small business owners start their businesses using a home office. Ideally, these homes possess an extra bedroom that can be converted to office space and includes plenty of space for filing and storage of office items. However, in the real world, many home offices take up residence in rooms earmarked for another purpose, including the living room. If you've found yourself in this situation, take heart. Many solutions exist that allow you to file away important papers and items without detracting from the decor.
- Skill level:
- Moderately Easy
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Things you need
- Desk wardrobe
- Rolling stool or cabinet
- Table with drawers
- Storage baskets
- Rolling file cabinets
- Door racks
- Wall shelves
Disguise your filing system as part of the furniture. For example, a wardrobe that houses a desk and filing cabinets is an option, as is a file drawer that resembles a rolling stool or small cabinet. These types of filing items help hide office files in the living room. Other types of furniture items that can double for this purpose include ottomans, tables with drawers and old-fashioned desks.
Work upward instead of outward as much as possible. Taking up floor space for your office stuff leaves you with less floor space for furniture that actually belongs in the living room. Consider a large wall-unit bookcase. You can buy baskets large enough to hold file folders and store them on the shelves. They'll look decorative, but still be functional.
Move items back and forth using furniture on rollers. For example, if you've created an office space in a small closet in the living room, store the file cabinets under the desk and tuck out of site by closing the closet door. A chair for this set-up can be positioned outside the door for extra room seating, but provides double duty as an office chair when the need arises.
Hang files using hanging racks on the backs of doors. This includes doors on armoire-type desks, converted closets, or the inside of the doors of decorative cabinets. Although these do not hold large numbers of file folders, if you refer to a few files a lot, this will keep them within reach but out of the way.
Create a shelf on the area of the wall closest to the ceiling. Store collapsible file folders on the shelves above your living room office work area. This solution allows you to utilise space that would otherwise be wasted and can be quite decorative if you pay attention to the types of shelves and file folders you buy.
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