In the post-Covid world, dedicated home office space was always regarded as a valuable commodity. Valuable, but not essential.
However, with many initially forced to work from home and a large percentage of those continuing to do so, in the post-Covid period, a good workspace has become essential for many buyers.
Where an outside office has been custom-built or created in an existing outbuilding, it will certainly add a premium, and where potential buyers can see that an internal space or room works well as an office, it will often help that property sell.
James Law, of Stacks Property Search said, “The best workspaces or home offices will be behind closed doors, or even better having their own separate access. Space that other members of the family are walking through, and that can’t be cut off from household noise, are unquestionably compromised.
“Everyone who’s been on the Zoom circuit for the last three months will know how difficult it is to focus when family life is coming and going, even if they’re doing it with hushed voices.
“There’s sometimes a tendency to pick the worst room in the house for a dedicated workspace. But in our view, somebody who’s working regularly in the home should put in a strong bid for a room with plenty of space, lots of light, good windows and an attractive view.
“Hot desking can work for some people, especially those who are used to it, but for most people work involves ‘stuff’, and if that’s got to be packed up and moved on a daily basis, it can get tiresome. A permanent place is best for leaving work things in their place, closing the door and not being permanently reminded of what still needs to be done!
“There’s no question that a completely separate office is the ideal arrangement, whether that’s a purpose-built room in the garden or grounds, a converted outbuilding, or even a caravan. There’s still a sense of ‘going to work’, household noise is kept to a minimum, and you’re not compromising space in the house.
“Property buyers who are looking for property that will provide workspace for one or more members of the family should ensure that they have firm plans for which rooms will be allocated in the same way that buyers tend to think about bedrooms when viewing.
“Workspace should be considered a priority, not something that can be compromised on. Don’t be afraid to completely re-think how space is used, just because somethings always been a dining room, or a snug, or a bedroom doesn’t mean it can’t be reallocated.
“If there isn’t adequate space in the property, or if the available space will need to be adapted to suit, then budget for the work that will be required. And build into your budget good shelving, storage and furniture.
“Finally it goes without saying that connectivity is paramount. Test, test, test before you buy, and make sure your chosen office space isn’t in a not-spot!”