Atlantans enjoy home sweet home office
IT Manager Sheryl Dwight works with people from all over the world from behind a desk in the comfort of her own home office, thanks to the craftsmanship of Artisan Custom Closets. “I work remotely with people both in America and offshore, so I spend the majority of my time in this room,” the Woodstock member says. She credits the highly rated Dallas, Ga.-based company with making telecommuting enjoyable by installing a custom office and closet for $8,700. “They helped me create the best utilization of the space, and it helps with future resale value.”
Indeed, a midrange home office remodel in the south Atlantic region can raise a home’s resale value by more than $11,900, according to the trade publication Remodeling’s Cost vs. Value Report. Local experts say more people have adopted home offices in recent years, largely as a result of technological advances that promote telecommuting and growth in home-based businesses due to the economy. More than 100 Atlanta service providers include “home office” work in the services they provide, among them remodelers, organizers and cabinet installation experts.
David Buchsbaum, owner of highly rated Atlanta Closet & Storage Solutions in Atlanta, says good home office design balances a client’s needs and the available space for home office furniture such as a desk, chairs, shelves and storage. “You want to know who’s going to be using the space and how,” he says. “You come up with a list of everything that needs to go into the space and complete the Rubik’s Cube of getting everything in place.”
The dwindling size of electronics allows more freedom in creating custom designs, says Danny Prewett, owner of highly rated SpaceMakers of America in Alpharetta. “Computers are so much more compact that it’s much easier to fit it nicely and discreetly into a home office,” says Prewett, who estimates a typical home office makeover at between $2,000 and $3,000 or higher for a larger project.
Buchsbaum says the benefits of a well-designed home office justify the time and cost. “It doesn’t magically make a disorganized person an organized person, but it gives the average person tools to more easily organize their lives,” he says. Ellen Carrington commissioned a redesigned home office from Buchsbaum for $6,000 after he impressed her with a closet installation. The Smyrna member says the additional work surfaces, shelves and storage space brought order to a formerly cluttered situation. “He worked with me very patiently until we found the perfect solution for the space,” she says. “The office is now an attractive and pleasant room in my home instead of an eyesore.”