From July 2017 I’ll be moving my business out of its office space and into a DIY garden office built at the end of our garden. Here’s the lowdown on why I’d do such a thing.
Working at the city office space has been great in terms of separating home and work life, getting into ‘work mode’ on the commute in and removing distraction, however welcome.
But when it comes to the practicalities of rented office space, it leaves a little to be desired. There are still distractions, in the form of emails for every parcel delivered, fire alarm tests and a whole host of other regulatory service personnel coming through at random times. Playing music is fine, as the rooms are sound insulated, but playing music on a hot day with the door open obviously becomes tricky.
Staff have full access to the offices, as they should, but this leaves privacy and security concerns as there are multiple flaws in the on-site security setup, from broken alarm systems, to lax front door checks.
I also wasn’t a huge fan of the commute, no matter how short. Always potential for a stressful journey.
So overall it’s tricky to fully relax, despite having the advantages of being a dedicated workspace. Although on the plus side, my time in the office gave me great perspective on the business and helped me to better see where it fits in locally.
So it’s on to the home office build to try and get the ideal workspace, combining separation and closeness.
The plan is to source as much as feasible second hand, while retaining long term durability. I want materials and the build to be sustainable, easy to remove and good value for money.
The budget for materials initially is £1000. The size? 6x4m with a 6x1m covered porch. Insulated, clad and electrified. I’m giving myself until early July to get it watertight.
I’ll document the build here, noting any issues that arise. I’ll be drawing on some help from more experienced and qualified folks, particularly for electrical and structural advice. The internet will also provide ideas and inspiration as I go on.
The plan is to use 3x2 treated timbers for the studwork. The frame will be set on 20 concrete blocks, themselves set on sand and hardcore. The frame will be vapour-wrapped and lined on the inside, being careful not to trap moisture, keeping it warm and breathable. Power will run to the office from the house, as well as a drain for future use, but also to solve an issue with our garden being a low-point in heavy rainfall.
Follow the garden office tag on this site to find out more. I’ll give links to all tools, tips and inspiration used.