Page 11 - Hawaii Renovation - Nov 7, 2021
P. 11

   Design, build a home office
Even before the pan- demic, most Ameri- cans had a space ded-
icated to the administrative management of their homes — small office areas mostly used to pay bills and main- tain household records.
“The home office isn’t a new phenomenon, but it’s never been more in de- mand,” says Bonnie Oda, di- rector of client care at Gra- ham Builders. “These days, home offices have become as popular and as essential as family rooms.”
Identifying adaptable space and setting it up to serve as an office can be challenging on an island where space is at such a premium. The design+build team at Graham Builders makes it a point to focus on areas that can be creatively maximized for multiple pur- poses.
What sort of work will be done in your home office? Privacy-intensive profes- sions in the legal, financial, insurance and medical in- dustries demand discretion and confidentiality. Even jobs involving processing credit card transactions re- quire privacy and a level of security.
“Client confidentiality is essential in the home of- fices of people who work in sensitive fields,” Oda says. “Maintaining confidential- ity requires an environment that’s separate from other household members.”
A room that doubles as an office can be “flex space,” repurposed for the different seasons of a family’s life. In many homes, guest rooms with privacy and high-speed internet connectivity can work perfectly. Customiza- tion means built-in furnish-
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ings for some homeowners — shelves and cabinets for reference books and files, or a desk tucked into an alcove beneath a staircase. Murphy beds and desks are also great options for small rooms that function as office spaces and guest bedrooms.
“Ultimately, the room must have good task and ambi- ent lighting, and it should be acoustically isolated for phone and Zoom conferenc- ing,” Oda says. “And good ergonomics are critical, es- pecially if a full-time job will be performed here.”
Home workspaces for art- ists, both amateur and pro- fessional, are also seeing a rise in popularity.
“Not long ago we de- signed a studio for a glass artist, with custom vertical cubbyholes and custom
cabinets for tools and mate- rials,” Oda reports. “Her hus- band has a traditional space that suits his work perfectly. Both can be repurposed for other uses later.”
Though a home office might not return as much value for the investment as a kitchen or bath remodel, it’s still a terrific place to spend some of your building bud- get — especially if you plan to work at home.
For more than three de- cades, Graham Builders has been helping Hawaii families make the most of their island homes at every stage of life. The Honolulu design/build firm can help you create a home office or studio that’s perfect for your professional needs. A free “Building Your Home for Life” seminar will take place on Saturday, Dec. 4. Register now at graham-, or call 808-593-2808.
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