Buying guide: What to look for in a home study or office desk

Cosy Home buyer's guide to choosing a desk

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The home office or study is increasingly becoming a feature of the modern home, with more and more of us working from home, and an even greater number needing a room for the family PC.

There are so many types of desks out there it is hard to know where to start when choosing one. Here are our tips on what to consider when shopping for a new desk.

1. Room size

One of the first points to consider when looking to buy a new desk is the size of your room. It’s easy to either underestimate or overestimate the size of a room, so take measurements and get equipped with the facts.

If the room is being used solely as a study you don’t want a desk that only fills a small corner, leaving the rest of the room looking empty. Equally if you have a small room you will need to buy a desk that will fit in and which will leave you enough room to open drawers and doors.

2. Will the office be multi-functional?

If you don’t have a room to solely dedicate to being a study, then it may need to be multifunctional. For example, it may be your study much of the time, but then double up as an extra guest room when required.

If the room is big enough to fit in a bed and a desk this is a good way of using a room. If you have a foldaway bed you will need to take into account how much room it will take up once it is down. You may find that a smaller desk works better in this situation.

3. How long will you spend in there?

Is this a room that will just be used occasionally or for nine to five work most days?  The more time you spend in there the more important it is that you get it right. If you’re going to be working there, it’s more likely to be motivating if it’s a room you like and enjoy being in.

4. What is your budget?

Another key issue to consider early on is how much money you have to spend on your desk.

This is also related to how much time you spend in there. If the desk is to be used every day the chances are you will want to spend more money on something you are happy with.

For example, this Mikke desk from Ikea is only £60 and is ideal for occasional use when you only need a small working area.

Whereas if you have a larger budget, more room and need to sit at your desk comfortably for longer periods, you may want to look at a product such as this natural solid oak computer desk from Oak Furniture Land.

5. Materials

Think about the style and materials you envisage your ideal desk being made of. You may have a preference for real wood, or you may prefer laminate for ease of cleaning and price. Real wood is obviously more expensive but will last longer.

6. What will you use it for?

Do you need the desk for checking emails and a bit of Googling or will you need room for a printer and scanner and possibly a shredder? If you will be using a PC as opposed to a laptop you may want room for the CPU underneath, as well as built in wiring holes for electrical connections.

This desk from Pirantha Ltd is a good example of a desk that has enough room to work at, plus has plenty of storage facilities for all the extras, such as a printer or scanner.

7. Are you messy or tidy?

Forget the office’s clear desk policy at work. What kind of environment do you like to work in? Are you a messy worker, who needs lots of space for files and books, or do you tidy things away each evening?

8. Consider ergonomics

If you are going to be spending a lot of time at your desk you want to ensure you don’t end up with back ache. Sit at the desk and make sure you have enough clearance for your legs and that it is the right height. Desktop equipment should be within easy reach to avoid unnecessary stretching or straining. Computer desks with a keyboard platform will allow of the keyboard to be placed at the correct height.

9. Consider a stand up desk

Desks don’t have to involve sitting down. A stand up desk will mean no more slouching, and will certainly keep you awake….and some scientists even claim they could help you lose weight! One of the latest trends to hit offices is stand up desks, and they may work for you at home too.

By Jackie Cosh 



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