Turn an Unused Walk-In Closet into a Home Office

An unused walk-in closet can act as the perfect location for a home office, especially if you have limited space in your home. When converting the space, keep the following tips in mind.

Focus the Purpose of the Closet

Although it can be tempting to continue to use the unused walk-in closet for occasional storage of items or clothes, you want to make sure that you focus the purpose of the closet. Space will be limited in the closet and you'll need most, if not all, of the space in order to have a comfortable, functional workspace. You don't want to compete with clutter. You may be able to fit a few items in the closet for storage in a dresser or chest of drawers, but you must first focus on creating a home office space.

Make Sure You Can Plug in Electronics

Most people need to work on computers in their home offices. If this is true for you, make sure that there's an electrical outlet within the walk-in closest that you can use to plug in your computer, printer, scanner, fax machine and any other electronics you'll need to get work done. It may be possible to run all of these electronics through a surge protector plugged into the room outside of the closet, but you'll have to unplug the surge protector every time you shut the closet door. (You can choose to permanently remove the closet door, however.)

Make Sure You Get Internet and Phone Connections

If you need to be able to access the Internet and use a phone in your walk-in closet home office, you should test connectability in the closet before you move in large furnishings. If there's no phone jack in the closet, see if you get cell phone reception. You can also run a phone cord outside of the closet to a phone jack in the room if necessary. You should also take a WiFi-connected laptop or accessory into the closet and see if you can get Internet connection. Otherwise you may have to look into installing a hardwired connection in your closet.

Get the Home Office Essentials

Remember that a walk-in closet offers less space with which to work than a typical home office. This means that you'll have to focus on getting the home office essentials in your closet. Make sure you have a desk that offers enough workspace for your computer and other necessary electronics but can fit comfortably within the closet. You'll likely need a desk chair and a filing cabinet as well at the minimum. What else you need will depend on your own preferences, but don't overload the closet with office items and furnishings you rarely use.

Consider Removing the Closet Door

Although being able to shut the walk-in closet door may afford you some privacy, the fact is that working in such a small space can be a bit confining. The closest also wasn't designed for air circulation. You may not have natural sunlight in the closet, either. Removing the closet door allows air to circulate, brightens up the environment and makes you feel less confined. The door may need to be off to allow cords to run out of the closet regardless.