7 Home Office Must-haves on a Budget
If your home office is outdated lacking functionality, consider making a few changes. While some items can seem a bit old-fashioned, they can always be spruced up or repurposed, so don't take all your belongings for granted. Here is a list of items that are not only useful, but they are budget friendly must haves.
Plus, with each suggestion, we've included either a link to a great DIY project so that you can spruce up any of the times you might already have or information about using or buying the item.
Your home office just isn't complete with these seven must-haves, so take a look and make our suggestions your own with a little creativity!
1. File Cabinet
A file cabinet has one major function: to store documents. It is a must-have item for that reason. Where else are you going to put all the hard copies printed from your computer? Using filing cabinets is one of the most efficient ways to store and organize documents so that they can be found if or when your computer crashes.
File cabinets can get pricey, but a great idea is to find a cheap, used one at a garage sale and paint it to add a pop of color in your home office.
One wonderful to make your cabinet do double duty is to use it as a place for your printer to sit.
Another great DIY project is to find two matching file cabinets and use them to make your own desk. This way you save space that it would take to have both a desk and multiple file cabinets. This two-in-one idea will leave you with a functional desk, customized to your tastes and office needs.
Check out these tutorials from handy bloggers who made their own filing cabinet desks: Over the big Moon: DIY File Cabinet Desk and Fisherman's Wide Furniture: DIY Filing Cabinet Desk.
For the same reason the file cabinet still has a place in the office, the Rolodex is a key player in backing up information not only on the computer, but also for your cell phone. No one memorizes phone numbers anymore, so if we lose any information on our electronic devices, having a Rolodex with special numbers will be imperative to use for contact information. These important home office tools can usually be found in your local dollar store.
Not interested in adding a boring Rolodex to your desk space? Try this amazing upgrade that uses paint chips to turn a standard Rolodex into a piece that will match your desk and home office style: Rolodex in Artful Order: Paint Chip Crafts.
As far as privacy and safety are concerned, it’s imperative to shred your personal documents when you no longer need them. Shredding documents also makes it easier to recycle the paper when it is no longer needed. Paper shredders come in a variety of types and prices, but big office supply stores run sales on them a lot, especially around tax season.
While we don't have a clever DIY suggestion for this must-have item, we do have a few suggestions for keeping your shredder hidden away. If you have a deep enough drawer in your desk, you can tuck your paper shredder away in it. Alternatively, buy a basket of similar size with a top. You can tuck your shredder away and pull it out only when needed.
4. Office Chair
Choosing the right office chair will have a lot to do with yoru personal preference and budget. Do you want to match the décor of the office, or is comfort more of a factor?
If the office is used daily, consider investing in a soft, comfortable chair that you will be content sitting in for long periods of time. If you don’t use the office much, consider finding a chair at a local thrift shop or yard sale. Just like the file cabinet, metal and plastic chairs can be painted for that splash of color in your office.
If you do find a gently used, cushioned office chair, you can always reupholster it to match your office décor . Check out Our Southern Home's tutorial for reupholstering a standard rolling office chair.
5. Drawer Organizer
Have your desk drawers turned into junk drawers that you search through without being able to find anything you need? By placing a plastic or metal organizer inside a drawer, you can consolidate your paper clips, rubber bands, push pins, and anything else into its rightful spot.
Can’t find a desk organizer? A cheaper item that works just as well is a silverware organizer that you can find at your local dollar store.
Alternatively, you can follow Mom on Time Out's DIY Drawer Organizer Tutorial to make a piece that is creative and fun, so nothing in your office is boring!
Depending on what you use the home office for, the décor should match that use. If you use the office for work, consider getting relaxing pictures and painting the room a soothing color. If you use the area for crafting or socializing on the computer, add splashes of color and fun items to personalize the space. Personal touches like family pictures and favorite books will keep the space from looking too much like a corporate cubicle.
Try one of these 11 DIY Projects That Will Add Character to Your home Office.
Speakers and headphones can be purchased within all different price ranges, depending on the quality and brand. Whether you want to watch videos online for research or listen to music while doing your taxes, speakers or headphones allow your home office to be personalized by sound.
Make your own Wooden Phone Amplifier or check out the 10 Best Headphones for Every Budget.