When you work from home, you’re often responsible for supplying your own equipment and creating a productive work environment. If you’re new to remote work, here are some work from home essentials you’ll need to get the job done!
I’ve been working from home since December 2007, and when I began, all I had was an old laptop computer and a high-speed wireless connection. I would often work at the kitchen counter or on the couch so I could keep an eye on my daughter. When I needed to print and sign a document, I would have to run to our local printing store to do these tasks because I didn’t have a printer or scanner.
Slowly but surely, I was able to upgrade my computer and purchase many other work from home essentials that make my work life so much easier.
If you’re wondering what tools and equipment you need for your home setup, here are the must-have essentials I can’t live without.
A desktop or laptop computer is the number one tool you’ll need to start working from home. Which brand you choose will likely depend on your occupation. For instance, many work from home customer service roles require applicants to use a personal computer (PC) because their software only operates on systems that are using Microsoft. Some remote positions require that you have two monitors.
Before you decide to purchase a new computer, please take a look at several job listings and make sure that the computer you’re buying meets all the technical requirements for the type of roles that you’re applying for. I personally use a MacBook Pro, which I love because it seamlessly connects and works with my other Apple devices.
If you’re using a desktop computer, you’ll also need a keyboard, mouse, and mouse pad. There are a wide variety of colorful and ergonomic options available. You can read reviews on Amazon to get an idea of which setup best suits your situation.
If you need a company-issued device, here is a huge list of work from home companies that supply equipment.
2. High-Speed Internet Connection
To be able to work online, you’re going to need a high-speed internet connection. Depending on your occupation, you might be able to use Wi-Fi or a hotspot connection. However, for most work from home customer service jobs, you’ll need a high-speed, hard-wired internet connection, usually DSL, cable, or fiber. Satellite and dial-up are generally not allowed because they are too slow. You can usually find the internet requirements listed in the job listing.
To keep your accounts safe, two-step authentication is the norm nowadays. Because of this, you’ll need to have a cell phone or smartphone where you can get text messages to receive your authentication code, or you’ll need a third-party authentication app. You’ll also use your mobile phone to work on the go and make and answer phone calls, text messages, and emails.
While you can work at your kitchen table during the day, having a desk with all your tools and work essentials in one place is much more efficient. What type of desk you choose will depend on how large your space is, your personal preferences, cost, how much space you need to spread out and work, and comfort.
When you spend eight hours in one spot, it’s crucial that you’re not causing injury or discomfort to your body. An adjustable standing desk can be highly beneficial to being comfortable and productive throughout the day. However, if a standing desk is outside your budget, there are laptop stands and adjustable risers that work just as well.
Another thing to consider when purchasing a desk is what type of storage it has. Having a desk with storage for your file folders, pens, router, and modem is ideal for keeping things tidy and organized. If you enjoy working in different areas of the house throughout the day, a lap desk can help you be mobile yet comfortable when getting work done.
5. Desk Chair
I have had the most difficult time finding an office desk chair that fits and supports my body. Most of the time, I would stuff a pillow behind my lower back to achieve an optimal level of comfort. That was until I got the FlexiSpot Premium Ergonomic Office Chair (C7). It was like the chair was made for my entire body, cradling it from the head, back, arms, and legs. This chair is adjustable, rolls easily, and has heavenly lumbar support. It also has a breathable fabric on the back portion, which is excellent for the entirely too-hot summer that we just went through.
If it’s not in your budget for a new office chair, you can always purchase a memory foam seat cushion or lumbar support pillow. I will say that after having an ergonomic chair, I’ll never go back to the method I was using.
I’ve used a wide variety of printers over the years, but by far, my favorite is my Brother INKvestment Tank Printer. It is easy to set up, works wirelessly, and prints, copies, scans, and faxes documents. But the best thing about this printer is the ink lasts forever! The printer comes with a one-year supply of ink, which lasted me well over a year. And the ink refill packs are affordable! I’ve had this printer since 2019 and only refilled the ink twice! With my old printer, I bought ink at least twice a year, which was pricey! If you’re searching for a high-quality all-in-one printer, you should explore Brother’s printers!
7. Home Office Supplies
When you work from home, you can’t run to the supply closet to grab what you’ll need. This is why you must create a master list of must-have work from home essentials for your office.
Generally, this will include:
- Pens, highlighters, and Sharpies
- Stapler and staples
- Notebook and printer paper
- Ink for your printer
- Hole puncher
- File folders
- Power strip
- Paper clips
- Day planner or calendar
- Label maker
8. Exercise Equipment
One of the downsides of working from home is you don’t move your body as much as you would working in a traditional office building. With a short commute to your desk and the refrigerator close by, it’s easy to gain a little extra when you work at home. Luckily, there are many great ways to squeeze physical activity into your day. From under-desk treadmills, ellipticals, and bikes to work balance boards and balance balls.
A few years ago, I was gifted the FlexiSpot Deskcise Pro V9, and I absolutely love it! It allows me to get in a lower-body workout while still accomplishing work tasks. With its compact size and lockable gravity casters, you can freely move anywhere in your house. It’s such an easy way to multi-task when you work from home!
Of course, you can always break out your yoga mat and get in a quick workout during your lunch break. With hundreds of free exercise videos on YouTube, there is no excuse for you to skip your workout routine!
9. Environmental Gadgets
When you work remotely, you get to create your perfect work environment: no more overhead fluorescent lights and steely gray industrial filing cabinets. Set the mood by adorning your home office with plants, candles, a diffuser, and lots of natural light. Get a small desk lamp that gives off a natural glow if you need additional lighting. You’ll be more energetic and productive when your work environment feels good!
Clear out any clutter and non-essential items, as these can be negative distractors. Additionally, investing in a good pair of noise-canceling headphones can be a lifesaver when residential sounds like noisy pets, crying babies, and lawnmowers distract you from your work.
Last, be sure to wear some blue light-blocking glasses. Staring at a computer screen for eight hours a day can be extremely hard on the eyes and cause frequent headaches. The American Optometric Association also suggests resting your eyes for 15 minutes every two hours worked on the computer.
Work From Home Essentials Conclusion
Seriously, new products are always coming out, but for the moment, these are my must-have work from home essentials! By using the right tools for the job, you will have better time management and increased productivity and creativity, all while decreasing injuries like wrist pain and eye strain. As someone who has suffered from carpal tunnel syndrome in the past, a simple tweak like using an ergonomic mouse can make all the difference in how much you get done every day.
To view all my favorites, check out my Amazon shop!
What are your must-have home office essentials? Drop me a note below; I’d love to hear from you!
I was gifted the FlexiSpot products mentioned in this post, and I’m happy to include them as I genuinely love them! For more information, please see our disclosure policy.