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Working from home means you can roll out of bed and start working without taking a shower or even getting dressed. It means no one’s watching over you and you’re truly your own boss. However, it also means you’re isolated from human contact and could be losing out on certain perks that come with working in an office environment. So, even if you’ve had luck remaining productive when working in your super affordable studio apartment, it might be time to ditch the home office regimen. Here are four reasons why.
1. Better technology
Losing an Internet connection is not only annoying but can also be fatal if you lose something important. Sure, there’s supposed to be a magical place where you can find that irreplaceable spreadsheet that seemed to disappear when the little exclamation point appeared in your system tray, but almost everyone has had to recreate a document from scratch because of a connection interruption. So keep in mind that good shared workspaces have powerful Ethernet and Wi-Fi connections. Your home Internet may do the trick, but frankly don’t count on it.
2. You might make new friends and contacts
If the only friends you have are your virtual friends and social media followers, it might be time to make the move to a shared space. Of course, you have to observe the proper shared workspace etiquette. Never sell or market yourself to your coworkers; don't think that your workspace is going to provide you with instant connections. But you might befriend coworkers with similar jobs, lifestyles, and interests. And, after you befriend your coworkers, you could even gain a contact or two that will help you get more or better work. Remember, it’s bad form to prowl your workspace for customers and clients, but you might get some by just socializing with others.
3. More perks
Shared workspaces come with a lot of perks that you can’t find at home. It’s no small thing to have a receptionist that can guide people to you or accept mail for you. And meeting a prospective client in a shared workspace meeting room looks better than having them come and sit on your couch at home. Also, many spaces will let you load up on free beverages and snacks. In addition, it’s great to have a business-class copier and scanner rather than that 10-year-old thing that sits on your bedroom floor that uses half an ink cartridge to print five pages.
4. Instant motivation
If others at your shared workspace are motivated and producing results, that atmosphere can help you (but remember to keep your coworking etiquette in check). Also, a good shared workspace will have state-of-the-art lighting, while your home office may be a little dingy. This can improve your motivation and productivity as well. In general, having other people around you who are productive will likely make you productive as well.
A final note
For some people, working at home is great. It saves money and gives you the freedom to work when you want to. If you work at home, all you have to do is go to your desk, turn on your computer, and start getting stuff done. And hey, you might even get a little bit of a tax write-off for homeowners using the home as an office.
However, for the reasons mentioned above, some of us just can’t properly motivate ourselves to work in the same place we eat and sleep. And so, a shared workspace can be a great idea. There are many options available, so do your diligence before you pick a spot that works best for you.
Sam Radbil is the lead writer for ABODO Apartments, an online real estate and apartments marketplace that produces rent reports for people living in smaller cities and apartments like Minneapolis to renters living in expensive, major markets like New York City. Their research and writing has been featured nationally in Curbed, Forbes, Realtor.com, HousingWire, and more.
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