If you are starting your own business, you may be thinking of setting up your own work space at home. When you work from the comfort of your own home, it is important that you create a space that is free from distraction, so you can stay focused on your work.
Working from home may come with a few distractions, which can be a particular nuisance if you work on the phone hosting important meetings, or work in the music industry where you need a quiet environment to record music for yourself or clients. Soundproofing your workspace can be a great alternative to renting an office, to help keep overhead costs down to a minimum.
Why a quiet workspace is important
Whether you require silence for your work or not, limited noise is important when you are working from home as it enables you to better focus on the tasks at hand. Noises such as family members talking, or cars driving past outside, can quickly become distracting, and take you away from your work. This can mean longer working hours and more stressful days. Work can cause enough tension, without the added stress of external, and annoying noises. A soundproofed room will also enable you to produce better quality work, especially if you are in the music industry, and ensure that you come across as professional to clients and colleagues.
Common noises when working from home
Working from home can bring about a range of noises, depending on where you live, and who you live with. With more people working remotely or setting up their own businesses which are run from their own home, more people are beginning to notice the distractions in their environment. Some of the most common noises are:
- Cars, people and construction work outside on the busy roads
- Family members or roommates
This means many of the common noises and distractions that are experienced when working from home are out of your control. Fortunately, there are many ways you can soundproof your office as a solution to help you focus and produce better quality work.
Here are some top tips to help you get started.
Speak to your family or roommates
The most simple solution is to speak to your family or roommates and see if you can compromise with some quiet time in the house. If you have pets that make a lot of noise, consider giving them some attention or tiring them out before you work, or set up their own den in another room to spend time in when you are doing important work.
Find a quieter spot to set up your home office
Sometimes, we can feel limited in our own house. You perhaps have a limited number of spaces and plug sockets that you can use. If you find that the spot where your equipment is set up is the most distracting, why not find a quiet spot to set up your home office? Perhaps there is a room you can swap over to, or build a garden office away from the main house and road.
Alternatively, if you have one room to use, is there a quiet spot in the room you can move to? If your desk is located near a door, window, a shared or an external wall, then you may find that moving your desk away creates less disturbance for you. Try to find a wall that does not have anything or anyone on the other side of it or a wall that is thick. If there are no walls that fit this description, you may wish to use the center of your room.
If you are limited with plug sockets or have a lot of equipment to move, you are able to organize your cables in a variety of ways, for example, using an organizer that you can read more about, which allows you to safely use your work or music equipment on the other side of the room.
Use soundproofing materials
In some cases, especially if you have important calls or create music, you may want to invest in soundproofing materials. Soundproofing can be done in a variety of ways, to suit different budgets. For example, you can invest in door sweeps which fill the gaps underneath your doors to stop noise from entering the room or a door seal that reduces the gaps around the entire frame. You can also install acoustic panels, which are made from foam and stop noise from passing through the walls, or mass-loaded vinyl (MLV) that you can install on your wall, to increase the mass surface that acts as a sound barrier.
There is a range of soundproofing materials that you can invest in, that blend into the walls and decor much easier, so you can keep the theme of your room intact. This may be an important factor in your business. These materials include acoustic panels and fabric-wrapped panels. Alternatively, there are some soundproofing materials that can be installed in the same way as insulation, between the walls, so you cannot see it.
If you don’t want to invest in soundproofing materials, you can simply use items you already have in your home. A DIY approach can be effective at keeping out noise, while on a budget. Here are some examples:
- Fill your room up with equipment, photos and painting, decor, rugs, tapestry or quilt, furniture, a sofa, etc.
- Use furniture, such as cabinets, wardrobes or bookshelves to create thicker walls
- Hang thick curtains or blankets onto your walls using removable hooks or curtain rods to reduce echoes and create a soundproofing effect
- Put up drywall with acoustic caulking
Check the surrounding rooms and reorganize them so they are soundproofed better with furniture, or remove the source of the distraction, for example, if there is a television on the other side of the wall.
Soundproofing your room may take a little time and effort, but is worthwhile for a peaceful workspace. This is important if you host important business meetings, or work in the music industry where the quality of work matters. Your business credibility and success rely upon it.