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How to: 9 Ideas for a Home Office and Guest Room

Comfort, functionality, and style. These are three of the most important factors to keep in mind while designing a home office that will also double as a guest room. You want a space that you’ll feel comfortable, creative, and productive while you work. But you also need it to be welcoming for your friends and family when they’re staying with you. It may feel impossible but don’t stress. These nine ideas are here to help. 


Choose the Right Bed

You want your guests to be comfortable, but you don’t want your home office to become cramped and cluttered — that won’t work well for anyone. Picking the right bed for your multi-purpose room is the key to getting the most out of your square footage. Daybeds and sleeper sofas are two practical options. Daybeds can be tucked against a wall and used as a sofa or lounge space when you don’t have guests. Sleeper sofas look like plush office seating by day while providing valuable sleep space by night. 


Choose the Right Desk

Just as important as picking the right bed is choosing the best desk to fit your needs and the space. In general, smaller desks feel less obtrusive. For example, a sleek writing desk could even double as an end table. Or, if you hang a mirror above it, the desk can pull double duty as a vanity for guests. Some other ideas include: 
  • Hang a shelf for a slim, low-profile desk — add a hinge and you can flip it up when not in use like a Murphy bed-inspired desk
  • Clear materials like glass or lucite virtually disappear, giving a homier visual for guests and a modern, glam look for you
  • Mid-century modern office furniture typically has clean lines and low profile, making it relatively easy to fit into your space


Style a Lounge-Like Look

Craving something that looks cool, low-key, and ideal for hanging with your guests? Consider styling your multi-purpose home office with living room-inspired flair. A plush accent chair provides a great spot for guests to curl up with a book. It also will give you a comfy spot to relax while going over reports or reviewing your calendar. Add a pouf and a throw rug for softness. A storage ottomon adds extra organization for spare linens, while also providing extra seating. 


Make Use of a Nook or Corner

Have an awkward nook or corner? Use it to your advantage by putting a customized desk into the space. If it’s a sizable nook, you could always tuck the guest bed inside for an extra cozy appeal. Floating shelves can double as a space to stand during quick touch down meetings. And when not in use, they also offer a little extra room for guests to put their toiletries and other necessities. 


Convert a Closet

Even if you don’t have a lot of open floor space, you can still fashion an efficient, fun home office in your guest room. The key is to make use of square footage that’s not getting used. Enter the closet. Take the doors off or leave them on to tuck everything out of sight when not in use. Paint the walls of the closet’s interior in a contrasting shade, or hang wallpaper only in the closet space to set it apart from the rest of the room. Don’t forget lighting to add personality. 


Stay Organized

Your guests aren’t going to feel at home or relaxed if they’re faced with your messy desk or overflowing filing. Save yourself the last minute mad dash to find somewhere to put all your stuff right before guests arrive. Instead, design your room with organization and storage built right in. Cabinets over the bed and/or over the desk make use of vertical space. 

Shelving units can add a visual divide between your home office and guest room space or get placed along the wall, depending on the space you have available. Tuck bulky tech like wireless printers into drawers or closets, and don’t forget to include baskets and trays to help corral smaller items and keep everything looking neat and tidy.


Add Entertainment 

You might not normally put a television or home entertainment system into your office, but it’s a great way to make guests feel more at home and deliver a hotel-like experience. After all, they might want to catch up on their favorite shows in private or watch the morning news before heading out to your shared space for coffee. As a bonus, you might even be able to use the television as an oversized monitor. 


Light it Up

The importance of great lighting in any room can’t be understated. It sets the tone for the space. In this case, you’re going to need a mix of task lighting for your work area and beside the bed, overhead lighting to illuminate the entire room and a few stylish options like chandeliers or wall sconces to add a decorative touch, warmth and just the right amount of light. 


Keep it Simple

There’s beauty in simplicity. It also makes it super simple to pack things up and convert the space into a haven for guests. For example, rolling desks give you the option of making full use of the space as a home office while allowing you to neatly tuck the desk in a closet or to the side when you need the square footage for guests. It also helps to keep your guests' (and your own) needs top of mind by stocking extra chargers and making sure plugs are easy to access. 

With a little strategy, planning, and the right furniture, you can create a fabulous guest room/home office that will seamlessly pull double duty. Before choosing permanent options, consider furniutre rental with CORT. We have everything you need to outfit your multi-purpose room on your terms and with your unique aesthetic.