How to set up your modern work from home office

Furniture

Many of us don’t use paper these days, but it can still be a good idea to have a multifunctional printer/scanner/copier as part of your home office setup.

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Be even more productive at home with these office upgrades

These days, more and more of us are working from home. Unfortunately, if you’ve recently transitioned to nearly full-time home employment, sitting at your kitchen table with a laptop and cup of coffee won’t cut it for your home office setup anymore. 

Setting up a modern home office definitely requires an investment. To be as productive and efficient as possible, you need the right equipment and supplies, which can get pricey in a hurry. That’s why shopping during sales is the best way to build the work-from-home office of your dreams without breaking the bank. Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales typically offer the best savings, so now is the perfect time to start planning your strategy for those key days. 

Want to get your shopping list ready for those big days now? Here are some tips — and even a few product recommendations for items we expect to be on sale this Black Friday and Cyber Monday — to help you create an excellent home office. 

Get situated

For the best home office, you’ll want a dedicated space to work from. That’s the best way to ensure you have space for all your must-have computer equipment — and a door you can close when you really need to concentrate. 

Most of us don’t have tons of extra space around the house, though, so it’s a good idea to find an area that can do double-duty. For example, a guest room can make a perfect home office — just add a pull-out sofa or futon, and it can still serve as a spot for family and friends to crash when they’re in town. Other options for a dual-purpose home office include a sun room, laundry room or even a shed or garage. 

Get connected

If you want to get plenty of work done without interruptions at home, your internet service and computer setup are critical. First, make sure your home is equipped with high-speed internet with a speed of at least 50 megabits per second. If other people in your house use the internet during your work hours, you’ll want it even faster. 

You’ll also need a high-powered wireless router to make sure you can easily connect to the internet. A dual-band router that supports at least 100 Mbps is your best bet. If you’re using Wi-Fi to connect to the internet, you may also want to invest in a Wi-Fi booster or extender, which is particularly important if your modem and router are located at a distance from your home office. 

It’s also a good idea to upgrade your computer setup. A laptop is a convenient option if you frequently work outside your home, like in your backyard or at a local coffee shop. Still, a desktop computer usually offers more power. So if you work almost exclusively from inside your home, it’s usually the better option. 

Whichever type of computer you settle on, you should definitely splurge on a top-of-the-line monitor. It should provide an excellent screen resolution and support HDMI 2.x, USB-C and DisplayPort connectors.

If you have smart home devices, such as smart lights, you may also want a virtual assistant like an Amazon Alexa-enabled speaker or Google Home speaker. They make it super easy to control the smart devices around your home office with simple voice commands. 

Get comfortable

The more comfortable you are in your home office, the more productive you’ll likely be. It may seem pretty basic, but it all starts with the right desk chair. Don’t try to repurpose a dining chair that will probably leave you with a bad back. Instead, invest in a high-quality, adjustable office chair.

Not only does this type of chair allow you to adjust its height, but it also lets you fine-tune its arm height, provide targeted lumbar support and offer a tilt feature. If you can’t get the seat height just right, you can also find a footrest for under your desk to help improve your posture. 

It’s also extremely important for your desk to be the proper height. In most cases, the work surface should be 29 inches above the floor. If you’re taller, though, you’ll want a slightly higher desk. You can find some desks that allow you to adjust their height, too, so you can even stand at your desk when you want.

Get focused

Proper lighting is another essential item for a home office. You usually want indirect lighting to cover your entire workspace, so overhead lights work well. 

Avoid placing a desk lamp right beside your computer monitor, which can create a glare that makes it difficult to see. If you need lamps for direct lighting in certain areas, position them so they’re not competing with the light from the monitor.

Home office product recommendations

While most retailers haven’t publicized their Black Friday and Cyber Monday deals yet, this list of home office must-haves is likely to be on sale in 2021 based on previous years’ offerings. You might even want to add some of these items to your cart now so you’re ready to pull the trigger when those Black Friday/Cyber Monday prices take effect.  

To make sure you don’t miss out on any sales that can help with your home office setup, you’ll want to sign up for the BestReviews email list. That way, you’ll be alerted to all the best Black Friday/Cyber Monday deals as they go live. 

Amazon eero mesh Wi-Fi system

Amazon eero mesh Wi-Fi system

Never worry about having Wi-Fi coverage in your home office with this whole-house Wi-Fi system that covers up to 5000 square feet. It works with Alexa, too, so you can easily manage all of your Wi-Fi-enabled devices. 

Sold by Amazon

Echo Show 8

Echo Show 8

This smart display makes it easy to control all the smart devices in your home office setup, including lights. It also makes it easy to make video calls with coworkers no matter where they might be.

Sold by Amazon and Kohl’s

Dell 23 P2319H Monitor

Dell 23 P2319H Monitor

With its thin profile and monitor base, this 23-inch monitor offers plenty of screen space but doesn’t take up much room on your desk. Its edges also have an ultrathin bezel design that makes it easy to set up multiple monitors with an interrupted view for greater productivity.

Sold by Dell and Amazon

HP ProBook 635 Aero G8 Notebook PC

HP ProBook 635 Aero G8 Notebook PC

This super lightweight laptop allows you to stay connected in your home office and beyond. It features the latest AMD Ryzen processor for an incredibly fast, responsive performance too.

Sold by HP

Hbada Ergonomic Office Desk Chair

Hbada Ergonomic Office Desk Chair 

This comfortable office chair provides targeted support for your head, back, hips and arms to prevent pain after a long day of working from home. It also features a fully adjustable headrest, armrests and waist support and has a weight capacity of 250 pounds. 

Sold by Amazon

Vari Electric Standing Desk

Vari Electric Standing Desk

Offering four height settings, this adjustable desk is perfect for sitting and standing — and you can make adjustments with the simple push of a button. It can hold up to 200 pounds and takes just five minutes to assemble.

Sold by Amazon

 

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Jennifer Blair writes for BestReviews. BestReviews has helped millions of consumers simplify their purchasing decisions, saving them time and money.

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