There are a few months out of the year when the sun is shining, the sky is bright blue, and it’s just too nice to be cooped up indoors. If you’re fortunate enough to work from home, it’s time to consider a change of scenery. With a few simple steps, you can turn your basic backyard patio into the perfect outside office.
What You Need to Work Outdoors
They say that fresh air is good for the brain. What better way to strengthen your mind than to work outside? Turning your humdrum patio area into a productive workspace is easier than you may think.
Here are some of the main things you’ll need to take your next meeting al fresco.
So sure, during the day, there’s plenty of sunlight. But what about those inevitable late nights when you’re still working until after the sun goes down? Installing lights in your patio helps you to enjoy mild summer evenings outside rather than staring longingly out the window.
There are different ways to light up your workspace. Low voltage LED’s will not only save your monthly electricity bill, they also last much longer than traditional filament lighting. Work with a professional electrician who can make quick work of installation and who will make your life easier by adding a light switch.
As much as we love longer summer nights, with the good, also comes the not-always-so-good. The summer heat can be unbearable. Even with the shaded protection of your patio, if there’s not a cool breeze to give you a break from the stifling heat.
Ceiling fans can help you find some reprieve from the rising temperatures. Just remember, if you’re going to be doing paperwork outside with the fans on, make sure to have some paperweights handy to keep everything from flying away.
Music is one of the ways we tune out the outside world when we need to focus and check things off our to-do list. Although computer speakers can get the job done, it’s nice to have them free for any conference calls or Skype meetings you couldn’t get out of.
Forget about wires with Bluetooth speakers that can be hung up in the corners of your patio. Think outdoor surround sound. Connect them to your phone, tablet, or laptop to keep the music going all day long.
So here’s another job for the professionals. Instead of having extension cords running across your yard from inside your house, installing outlets in your patio area keeps everything safe and wire-free. Another plus, other than nixing the tripping hazard, is that your devices can be easily charged to last as long as you need them to. Need to print? No problem, just plug it in.
Pull Down Screens
Of course, not every day will be ideal to work outside. For those blustery days when it’s still too hot to be inside, sunscreens will create a haven for you under your patio. Not only will they create a mini shield from the wind, but will also protect you from the setting sun that will sneak under your patio. Pull-down shades are convenient and can roll up to hide when not needed. Their low profile won’t take away from the overall look of the space.
We’ve saved the best, and most important, for last. Having the right furniture makes a world of difference wherever you’re working. Find a functional table that provides enough space for your laptop, coffee, paperwork and whatever else you may need to keep handy.
The next thing every office needs is a comfortable chair. You’re going to be sitting for quite a while, best to find something that will help you keep working all day. Just as with a regular office, your chair should be ergonomic and at the right height for your worktable.