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6 Tips for Buying a Home That Will Double as Your Office

Anna Johansson
Anna Johansson
CEO at Johansson Consulting

See what you should look for in a house where you'll both live and do business.

Remote work is on the rise, which means millions of people work directly from home. As an entrepreneur who is looking to buy a house, it's smart that you keep this in mind throughout your search. By purchasing a home that's conducive to running your business, you'll get a much higher return on your investment.

Residential real estate is unique in that it's bought and sold all over the world, but value is constantly increasing, decreasing and fluctuating based on hundreds of uncontrollable factors. While there might not be such a thing as the perfect house, you can increase your chances of investing in the right house for your needs by considering and implementing the following tips.

1. Don't overspend.

Most people would prefer to think about their wish list rather than price, but money is the natural place to start this conversation. If you aren't carefully considering dollars and cents on the front end, you'll find yourself in a world of hurt on the back end.

Overspending on your house simply because you need some extra space for a home office defeats much of the purpose of working from home. In many cases, entrepreneurs spend so much extra that they could have rented commercial office space and come out better.

2. Look for the right office setup.

While you don't want to overspend to get the perfect home office, you do need to carefully consider your working setup and whether it's practical for your needs.

If you live with other people – e.g., roommates, a spouse or children – then you most certainly need an area that's secluded from the rest of the home. This could be something as simple as a spare bedroom or as complex as an in-law suite with a separate bedroom, bathroom, kitchenette and living area.

3. Think about outside noise and distractions.

Practically speaking, you should be thinking about external factors like outside noise and distractions. What is the orientation of the house? How large is the lot? Is the neighborhood quiet during the daytime? Is there a lot of noisy nightlife? The only way to figure out these things is driving by the property at varying times.

For maximum productivity and focus, most people should avoid purchasing a home adjacent to a large concert venue or directly off the interstate. The quieter the area is, the less likely you'll be distracted.

Along these lines, be careful with neighbors. In theory, it might sound like a great idea to move next door to your best friend, but do you really want them popping their head in when you're trying to get work done? Small details like this matter.

4. Ensure you have enough storage space.

If you're an SEO specialist who uses nothing more than a laptop computer on a daily basis, space probably isn't a big issue. However, if you run a home-based business where you're making your own products and shipping them out of your house, space is a concern.

Ensure you have the proper amount of room for conducting business. If you need a bunch of storage space, think about a garage or basement that you can finish and turn into usable space.

5. Consider proximity.

As you've probably heard before, the most important factor in real estate is location, location, location. Just because you're working from home doesn't mean your location doesn't matter.

Think about the places you visit most frequently – such as the post office, office supply store or company headquarters – and take them into account when comparing homes. Do you really want to drive 45 minutes each way just to drop by your company's office for a weekly meeting? It's easy to write this off as a simple inconvenience when you're buying a house, but it can become a real nuisance over time.

6. Think about the future.

You might have the most stable job in the world, but don't be foolish enough to think you're invincible. Plans change, the economy ebbs and flows, and you might not have the same job in three, five or 10 years.

If you were to lose your job, would you still like the house? More importantly, will the house be easy to sell when you decide to put it on the market? These are the questions you need to ask yourself before putting in an offer.

Make your next home your dream home

Everyone talks about buying their dream home, but few people end up being fully satisfied with their investment years down the road. Why is this? And how can you avoid a similar fate?

While a dream house is more of a fantasy than anything else, you can increase your chances of being satisfied with your home purchase by doing ample research and carefully considering all aspects of the deal – including the fact that you'll be spending a lot of time working from home.

When you buy a house, there are two major factors at play. First and foremost, you want to make sure you're satisfied with the house and enjoy your time as the owner. But secondly, you must ensure the investment is a sound one and that you'll get a strong return when it comes time to sell. If you think about the six factors outlined in this article, you should be fine on both fronts.


Image Credit: Andy Dean Photography/Shutterstock
Anna Johansson
Anna Johansson
business.com Member
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Anna is a freelance writer, researcher, and business consultant. A columnist for Entrepreneur.com, HuffingtonPost.com and more, Anna specializes in entrepreneurship, technology, and social media trends.