Organized Home Office

More than ever families need a home office.  Whether you use it for your career or just to keep up with family management responsibilities such as bills, email and mail, it is important to have an efficient work space (and the kitchen table doesn’t count).  You don’t nessecarily need a designated room in your home but at least an area to keep everything you need to work in one place.

In our old house I had to use a side hall for my work space but since we built our very organized home I now have my very own office in our house…truly a dream come true.  Take a look:

  • I  think that the ideal work space is in the shape of an “L”. This way you can keep the items you use the most frequently at your finger tips and still have space to spread out and work.
  • It is crucial that I start each day on a clean desk.  Not only does this give each day a fresh start it helps me to narrow in on the day’s tasks.  One of my secrets for having a clutter-free desk is that little drawer to the left of my laptop.  In there is my “working on” pile.  All of the paper, research, etc that I am in the middle of.  I place them in there at the end of my work day and they are convientely ready for the following day.  You can use the same concept with a tray or a basket.

  • The other key to a clean desk is keeping up the filing.  I have a file drawer at my fingertips so that I can quickly file paper that is worth keeping. (only 20% of the paper we see is worth keeping!)
  • Eventhough I have overhead lighting I love this lamp for evening hours when I can use a little extra light.
  • Another favorite tip: I keep all of my passwords in an address book on my desk. This way they are alphabetical and I can easily find the one I need.

Of course I have my books on display in my office.  Not only do I refer to them for interviews and blogging they inspire me.  Each one holds a special place in my heart.




I found this adorable bullention board at Kirkland’s for $20.  I am not really a bulletin board girl but it matches perfectly! I use it to post important reminder and keep track of wins for my volleyball team.



  • I have one closet in my office that I had all shelves installed into.  It is great for storing all of my binders, supplies and books.
  • I found these magazine holders on sale at Michael’s for about $2.00.  I do love a deal!
  • They are great for storing magazines that I need to go through for research and for the ones I have an article in.
  • I also use three-ring binders for reference papers.  These are papers that I will need to go back to again and again.
  • I love this box because it stores all of my messy electronics and cords.  Again from Michael’s for cheap!
  • I want to focus on my work and writing when I am in my office so storing items in the closet allows me to do that by not being distracted by too much clutter.


For more tips on how to organize your home office go to chapter 26 of Organize Now! Your Money, Business & Career

Create a Portable Home Office

The following is a guest post from MS Simplicity:

I work from home. No surprises there. However, I do not have a home office. Crazy I know but I know many of you are faced with the same options that I have. I have a four bedroom house with three children. Everyone has their own room and because of this my office was lost to the privilege of all of my boys having their own space. My oldest is leaving for college in the fall and needless to say I am a little giddy about reclaiming a space of my own. If you were to walk into my house right now you would see me typing away at my island with an extra large monitor and my laptop. Next to me you would find my husband with his large (note, his is not extra large) monitor and his laptop. Next to him you would find my oldest son with his laptop. I sit in a chair that is not comfortable. I look at dishes in the sink and think I should probably get up and wash them. Truth be told…I probably wont.

best online casino sans-serif;”>So in the meantime I muddle my way through and have had to become super organized in what I keep near me when I work. I thought there has got to be other people out there like me who need help with their portable home office organizing so I will share some of the things that I have found to be most useful.


  • Clipboards: Each clipboard holds a project that I am working on where I need to physically track things on paper. Each project has their own clipboard. When I want to work on that project, I simply grab the clipboard and I can go anywhere in my home or car to work on it.
  • Metal file basket: This is the home to all of my clipboards. They are neat and organized here and I can easily see where each clipboard is at. The basket is small enough that I can grab it with one hand and move it around or put it away at night. Along with my clipboards I keep a three ring binder, envelopes and stationary for my business in the basket.
  • Sophisticated File Tote: Disclaimer, I sell these. But even if I didn”t I would tell you how great they are. It has a built in hanging file folder system and I have all of my business papers and supporting fliers and documents right in there. If I am going to meet someone for coffee about my business, my tote goes with me. It is cute and makes me feel all girly in the land of teenage boys and testosterone.
  • Timer: Clipped to the Sophisticated File Tote is a timer. This is what I use when I don”t want to work on something but I know it has to get done. I set the timer for 5 or 10 minutes and work on it non-stop until the timer goes off. It is a great way to trick my brain into getting things done on my to do list.


MS. Simplicity, also known as Melissa Schmalenberger  operates her business as I Did it with MS. Simplicity.  She is a Professional Organizer based out of Fargo, ND and her website can be found at