Home office renovation

When we moved back to our childhood community and bought a house I had one pretty big requirement: I had to have a home office as I need to work remote. There simply isn’t any software development work for me here.

So the later part of 2018 and early 2019 we’ve renovated an old storage room in the basement and made it into a home office. The storage area itself was moved into an old boiler room with more efficient shelving.

I haven’t done any renovation project before and I can’t believe how long it took. It was just 1 room! Or 1.5 if we’re being honest.

Unfortunately I didn’t take enough progress pictures and the before pictures were taken with some shoddy mobile camera. Hopefully you can get the idea anyway.

This is the entrance. You enter from a dead end corridor.

My first thought was to tare down the wall to make a large room. Unfortunately it’s a supporting wall made of concrete.

It comes with a nice color scheme and the distribution board.

The walls had some cracks and holes after we ripped out the shelves. The distribution board annoyed me as it takes up a whole wall which might have been perfect for shelves or a whiteboard.

We got help from Veronica’s sister’s boyfriend who’s a painter to take care of the walls. I was planning to put up a whiteboard but we opted to wait and see where to best place it.

These are the only in-progress pics I have. We’re in the middle of gluing the ceiling plates.

For the ceiling I got some sound dampening plates (is the plate the right word? They’re quite soft) which we glued to boards we nailed to the ceiling. I was really worried when we were putting them up that they would look misaligned or weird but they actually turned out very well.

Ceiling with LED lights.
Ceiling with LED lights.

I got some high quality LED panels for lighting. Lighting is important as you can get headache if you sit in a room long periods if it’s poorly lit or poor quality lights. I had some mounts as well but they didn’t really work so we just hung them up on some wires. Not as pretty but I really don’t notice it.

The distribution board is hidden away nicely behind an IKEA kitchen cupboard.
Here the renovation is done. Naturally the computer is the first thing up.
Here the renovation is done. Naturally the computer is the first thing up.
A green broadloom on the floor
A green broadloom on the floor

We didn’t bother to remove the existing glued carpet and instead just added a carpet on top. Work smarter not harder.

For now I have two desks. When there’s space it gets filled quickly.

I bought a new desk from Kinnarps so I can alter sitting and standing. I’ve been using it for about a month now and while I should change more often I do stand a few hours per day.

My old desk also fits which is excellent for my hardware projects, LEGO builds or just as a place to offload stuff.

Yes it’s a bit of a man-cave as well as an office.

What to do with an inefficient corridor? A home gym!

Now having a home office and a man cave is a luxury, it really is. But having a home gym right next to it takes it to a whole new level.

Usually the last 2-3 hours of a whole day of programming were much, much slower and heavier than the first very productive hours for me. Going to the gym over lunch often gave me energy to push through the latter half of the day with relatively high productivity and without tanking my energy levels.

What I can do now is even better. I can work, then do a quick set as a break, then work etc. This keeps my energy levels and productivity high throughout the day.