Working from the Garden
Working from home and flexible working hours are trends that have been gathering pace over the last few years and this beautiful garden make-over shows that having office space in the garden is a great way to have the best of both worlds.
It is now estimated that 44 percent of those aged between 30 and 49 are working from home as of June 2021. The amount of companies practicing flexible working hours has trebled over the last 10 years. But, even if you are lucky enough to have the choice of where you work, the reality of setting up a workspace within the home is often fraught with problems. Family homes can be noisy and chaotic with multiple family members needing space to work in. This is where the garden can come in very handy. An office space within your garden is a great way to have the best of both worlds. A quiet and calming workspace with the ability to work flexible hours and no commute.
Working from home can help to improve physical and mental health and it has been long known that being outside surrounded by trees and plants has multiple health benefits, what could be better than combining the two!
Early in 2020 The Garden Creative transformed this uninspiring 50 square metre garden in the heart of Whitstable into a beautiful oasis of trees, flowers and shrubs with colours and fragrances to span all four seasons. The clients enjoyed relaxing and eating in their garden but when their working circumstances changed they needed more space, everyone trying to work and study round the kitchen table just wasn’t practical. They asked us to help.
The garden had an existing wooden shed in a summerhouse style with double doors at the front on a concrete base measuring 9 square metres. The family had been using it for storage and as it didn’t have insulation or electricity it wasn’t going to be practical for working from.
We designed a small office to be installed on the exact footprint of the summerhouse so no need for any concrete to be poured. Built from timber with a Cedar front surround, the office is fully insulated with double glazed window and doors, a birch ply interior and engineered wooden flooring. It took just 14 days to complete. The design includes a pergola to the side of the office that has dual purpose, giving the climbing Akebia quinata that was attached to the old summerhouse a new home, and screening off the bin store that was at the end of the garden.
An electrician fitted electricity including Wifi and heating all remotely controlled from the house, so the clients can make sure the office is nice and warm before settling in for the day.
Buying an off the shelf office can be tricky if you are trying to make it fit onto an existing shed base or into a tight or oddly shaped space, this is where a bespoke building is the perfect solution. Prices for garden offices start from £10,000.
Some reasons why working from the garden should be something to consider
1 Seeing ‘Green’ improves wellbeing. In 2014, researchers from the University of Exeter Medical School found that people living near to green space reported less mental distress and illness including depression, anxiety, heart disease, diabetes, asthma and migraines
2 In a Remote Work Survey 89% of workers felt they were better able to take care of themselves when working remotely (employmenthero.com)
3 Working remotely drastically reduces green house gas emissions, helping to improve air quality
4 A standard sized office doesn’t usually require any planning permission being completed under permitted development
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