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January 2011
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Make Sense of the Clutter
Organizing your home office.

Home offices are necessities in many different cases. Some people simply want a place to keep their computer and important papers safe while others need to work from home part- or full-time. Whether you are trying to get a new business off the ground or simply trying to create a homework space, organization is key to the functionality of the home office.


Making the most of limited space is a typical dilemma when organizing your work area. Laptop owners will have little problem finding sufficient work surface for their computers, but desktop owners may not be so lucky. Good Housekeeping magazine recommends that owners of large traditional monitors either upgrade to a flat screen or use a monitor stand to leave more of the desk’s surface area free.


A dusty tangle of cords is an unfortunate fixture in many household offices. Cleaning up this disarray is one of the fastest and most dramatic ways to improve the look and functionality of your space. If you do not want to switch to wireless Internet, printers, keyboard and mouse, purchasing cord organizers is a great option. You can fasten the organizers to the back of your desk or a wall in order to snap your cords into the proper place. You can also buy specialized tubes that will contain all cords that run to the same area. Attaching labels near both ends of every cord will make things easy when a specific item needs to be unplugged.


The top of your desk is the most visible and commonly used part of your office, and should therefore be the best organized. Buying storage containers with compartments to contain commonly used supplies like writing tools, a stapler, tape, a pencil sharpener and scissors will help keep those materials within easy reach.


A mail organizer is a crucial component to a functional home office. Make sure there are enough slots to accommodate one each for unpaid bills, paid bills, outgoing mail and unopened mail. Last, make sure there is a space for envelopes and stamps in the same area, so that you will have everything you need to pay bills in one spot.


Drawers have a tendency to hide lost items and collect clutter. Avoid this by dedicating each to a single purpose. For example, place all electronics in one drawer including your digital camera, flash drives and backup hardware. Using boxes as partitions is an inexpensive way to maintain your carefully laid-out system and prevent lost items.


Martha Stewart recommends using decorative boxes to store archived paperwork and mail. Placing these boxes on a bookshelf in your office area saves desk space for items that are used more regularly. Having a safe spot for old paperwork also ensures that nothing valuable is accidentally thrown away. 


Organizing your home office is not only easy, but also necessary for saving you time and frustration. Keeping up with these simple tasks will ensure that you maintain your space in top working order.

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