8 tips to designing a study

There’s no denying that the changes to our work patterns in the last few months may have a major effect on the way we work going forward. Many of us have been working in a makeshift ‘study’ (aka the kitchen table). Rightmove report that over a quarter of people (28%) who were not planning a move before lock-down are now entering the market – and unsurprisingly, a study is a priority on their wish list.

So, what do you need to consider if you’re moving into a new house, or just wanting to make a dedicated study in your current one?

  1. Choose the right room. Ideally this will be away from the hustle and bustle of the house or a busy outdoor road; try to avoid being close to a noisy kitchen and children’s play areas. It needs to be light, but offer privacy, and a room where you can shut the door at the end of the day. A spacious room will allow you to stand up and sit back down from your desk, so avoid being right next to a wall.
  2. Choose a comfy, ergonomic chair (provides lower back support, promotes good posture and helps alleviate back pain) and spacious desk. Sound sensible but to avoid any health issues, get the best chair you can afford. A desk that can accommodate your PC, screen and paperwork is important so you’re not constantly feeling cramped and hemmed in.
  3. Storage and shelving – how much do you need? Do you need space for a printer and drawers for suspension files? Try to keep your desk uncluttered by putting away pens, paperclips etc. We’re big fans of shelving/storage/desk options from Ikea.
  4. Natural light and lighting – natural light where possible is the best, however when you’re working at night, or have no windows in your study, try to have a few lighting options such as ceiling lights, floor lights and lamps to suit the work you are doing. Do not have your screen facing direct sunlight.
  5. Temperature – too hot in summer and too cold in winter doesn’t add to a great working environment. Open a window where possible and if not, get a fan to circulate the air. This will help to keep you focused. If it’s too cold, there are some good portable heaters on the market.
  6. Clean and tidy. Does what it says on the tin. A tidy office will help you to stay focused mentally and adds to a sense of calm.
  7. Personalise the room. Add a picture you love, or a motivational statement that gets you fired up. If you hold meetings (see point 8) try not to over personalise your study with hundreds of family photos and the kids drawings!
  8. Meetings – keep the room clean and tidy and not over cluttered; display your professionalism. If you have client meetings either in person (in a normal world) or online, no-one wants to see a chaotic room with paper everywhere and dirty coffee cups.

Genesis Homes have designed house types with dedicated study’s such as the 4-bed Lowther and 5-bed Whillan but the majority of our homes can accommodate a study in a spare bedroom.