Big lessons have been learnt about how we use our homes during lockdown. Multifunctional space that works harder for us needs to be the new norm. Houses for life after lockdown require different purposes dependent on the time of day or day of the week. Many of us want space that meets the needs of flexible home-working, schooling, family life and exercise. Before the coronavirus lockdown 70% of people in the UK had never worked from home (Office for National Statistics). Fast forward eight weeks and this global pandemic has resulted in millions of people swapping the office for makeshift workspaces on the kitchen table. Interiors need to be re-arranged with multiple uses in mind carving out dedicated workspaces or creating rooms that can be reconfigured dependent on the time of day.
Even though lockdown restrictions are easing for many businesses allowing employees to work from home, at least some of the time, will become the new norm. Chief executive Mark Zuckerberg has revealed that he expects about 50% of the workforce will end up doing their jobs outside of Facebook’s offices within the next 5 to 10 years. Many more businesses will follow suit as flexibility and work-life balance play a major part in a happy workforce.
Suddenly our home now needs to offer the flexibility to be an office, a school, a gym, a playground as well as first and foremost a home. So how do we zone those areas and create multifunctional space without losing the heart of our homes?
For many years we have helped client’s organise their homes, de-clutter, project manage house decoration, buy and sell furniture and help families create spaces that work better for them. Here are some of our top tips to create multifunctional space for your lives.
Walk round your house to see if there are any areas that are under utilised? This could be the hallway, under the stairs that is currently a dumping ground for shoes and coats, an alcove or a conservatory. You may discover some space where you could fit a workspace or desk and storage for working from home.
There may a corner in a bedroom that is not utilised and could take a workstation or alternatively a corner on the landing where a blanket box usually sits. You will be amazed what you can do with a small space.
Outdoor Space is Key
Maximise your outdoor space creating intrinsic links between the home and garden. Merging of internal and external areas provides the impression of greater space and significantly reduces the feeling of confinement.
Garden office/dens come in large and small sizes. This bijoux office/ gym storage space can be tucked into a corner of a small garden.
Even a small terrace can be turned into an inviting work space area which doubles up as an entertaining space. It is worth getting electricity hooked up outside so that you can light the area and also recharge ipads and mobiles etc.
A small house can be made to feel more spacious than its compact floor area by incorporating gardens and courtyards.Even the tightest of spaces can fit a chair or two to sit which can double up as an eating area, an office or work area for the kids.
Think creatively about your space that you have. If you want to be maximise your outside space then a covered patio area will allow you to use this space even when it’s tipping it down.
Design A Cloffice
With thoughtful planning and creativity, almost any space in the home can be turned into a useful home office. Turn a wardrobe in the guest room into a nifty office space. Guests will manage with some hooks, hangers and a vintage luggage rack.
A Fully Loaded Laundry Room
A perfect solution for those that want a dedicated home office but do not have the room for a stand alone office. All you need is a desk, a chair, good connectivity and storage. You’ll come out smelling freshly laundered too!
If the TV room has been commandeered as the new office then create teen hangout zones elsewhere in the house. When the weather is good – kick ’em out with some colourful beanbags. There are many waterproof options on the market which make life much easier.
Kids Workstation and TV Room
Double up and create dedicated workstations with the kids TV room.
A Smart Office and Playroom Combo
Combining the playroom with your office allows you to keep an eye on the littl’uns whilst you catch up on your emails. You’ll deserve a medal if you actually get any work done but sometimes we have no choice!
Fold It Away
The bed is a crucial piece of furniture in every home. At the same time, it’s also the one that perhaps occupies the most space. The fold down bed doesn’t always have to confirm to the modern interiors and this clever design will work in an old or new setting.
A dedicated gyn is a luxury when space is at a premium but combine it with a home office and create a purposeful multifunctional space for the family.
Multifunctional space requires maximum storage to ensure things get stowed away when not in use so that the room doesn’t become cluttered.
Stylish storage baskets make a great feature and when they look this fine don’t need to be hidden away.
Behind the door storage is a great solution for tight quarters. Those precious square feet can be put to good use.
The Ultimate Space Saving Wine Cellar
It doesn’t all have to be about work and fitness. Customising your house to fit around your hobbies and interests is important. If wine is your ‘thing’ consider installing a wine cellar pod. We love the ingenious space saving under stairs wine cellar and with the correct lighting it makes a statement feature too.
It’s All In the Wash
A great way to free up a room is to combine a shower or bathroom with the laundry room. Create purpose built storage to tuck your machines away and keep everything hidden.
We help so many clients organise their homes and manage decoration or works projects. Now is the time to look at how your home works for you and your family and supports your lifestyle. Whether you want a gym space in your flat or need to create various workstations for homeworkers, large and small, we can work wonders. We can arrange workmen, manage projects, liaise with gardeners, source and buy furniture and supplies and oversee the install.
Our focus is our client. We therefore offer a flexible and transparent pricing structure, with no membership, contract or joining fees. There are no minimum use requirements – simply ‘buy time’ as it is needed. At Buy Time we support individuals and families for an individual project or on an on-going basis. Our long term relationships have benefited from this approach for well over a decade. We charge an hourly rate and in 5 minute slots. It is not as expensive as you think.