Professionals who work from home may feel overwhelmed by the convenience of their accessible office. However, there are several tips that help make a daily home office routine fit the realm of professionalism.

Punctuality – A Priority
Setting a specific time of day to begin working from a home office is a major factor in reaching daily goals. If you aspire to retain a professional business appearance, create a starting and completion time for your home office schedule and stick to it.

The actual start of a home office work schedule depends on the type of business. For example, real estate businesses can accomplish much by starting their day early by tending to paperwork, appointment scheduling and filing. Home office professionals tend to procrastinate about filing whether in computer files or hard copy files. Files interrupt the natural flow of business and create clutter that diminishes an organized work space.

Set a completion time for day’s end in a home office so there is a visible division between business and personal life.

Avoid Distractions
Just as in an offsite business office, distractions cause errors. For home office accountants, tech writers and design engineers, it is important to avoid distractions that increase errors. Home office equipment should be relatively noiseless and mobile devices should be turned off on an “as needed” basis to accomplish daily goals.

Ergonomic Home Office Furnishings
Home offices should be furnished so issues of comfort, accessibility to frequently used business equipment and communication devices are addressed ergonomically. Tips to avoid the feeling of a congested home office include arranging furniture with sufficient floor space. Don’t forget to rearrange home office furniture at least once a year to refresh the workplace appearance. The added benefit of this is mental refreshment rearranging provides.

Dos and Don’ts for the Home Office
Since a specific volume of work must be accomplished daily in a home office, do try to arrange the next day’s workflow at the end of each work day. Do allot a specific amount of time each day for unexpected distractions that take priority. Don’t overload an appointment calendar that might compromise important daily paperwork.

Than Merrill, a real estate educator and investor recommends “creating a motivating workspace” and “dressing for business” for a more professional home office business environment. (Ref:

So set the standards for the level business atmosphere that works best to accomplish each day’s goals and you’ll likely be able to do quite well in a home office setting.