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Working from home is a great way to liberate yourself from the shackles of the regular working day, but you may find it difficult to make the transition. When you have your own office to maintain, you wind up footing a bill of expenses that were never a concern before. In order to make the most out of your home office, try following these great tips to cut expenses and make your work space as productive as it can be.

  1. Don’t Over-Design
    It can be tempting to go overboard with interior design in your home office, but try to resist the urge. In order to cut expenses in your office, you’ll need to learn the difference between needs and wants. While you may feel a strong desire to make your home office look as modern and professional as possible, this is not something you need to do in most cases. Unless you are inviting clients into your office regularly, save money by learning to be content with simple furnishings.
  2. Evaluate Your Internet Service
    It is practically impossible to run a business from home without a stable high-speed internet connection, so your WiFi might be one of the most important resources you have. Even here, however, you might be paying for more than you need. You might even be paying for services that you’re not receiving. Evaluate your internet service to make sure you’re getting the most for your money every month. If it seems like you’re paying too much or not receiving the service you pay for, talk to your service provider about changing your plan, or consider changing companies.
  3. Cut Your Energy Consumption
    When you work from home, your utilities are bound to go up. You’ll be using more electricity every day, especially in the summer when air conditioning becomes a necessity, and at night when you need to work by light. You’ll probably be cranking up the thermostat in the winter as well. Cut your energy costs by outfitting your office with energy efficient lights, powering down your electronics when not in use, and taking advantage of natural ventilation for summer-time cooling. In the winter, consider wearing an extra layer and investing in an energy efficient space heater to keep the thermostat lower.
  4. Find Free Software
    Sourcing your own software for a home office can be difficult–you might be shocked at how expensive those programs really are. Looking for deals on websites like Cheap-Buys.com might help, but a solution even better than Cheap-Buys.com might be free software. There are free alternatives to programs like Microsoft Office, Adobe Photoshop, and almost any other program you might need. Look into free programs like Open Office and Paint.NET before you pay big money for the most popular software.
  5. Eliminate the Land Lines
    In a world dominated by internet and mobile communications, many people are still using land lines for phone calls and faxes. You can save yourself a bundle by getting rid of these in the new year. Use internet fax services for all of your fax needs, and use mobile communications and VoIP capabilities for your direct communication needs. Land lines may still be useful in some settings, but they’re a waste of money in a home office.

Photo credit: thestir.cafemom.com

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