Thursday, January 29, 2015

Squeezing a Home Business Center into a Small Living Space

We live in a tiny, two bedroom one bath condo.  And with two small kids, while our home is economically beneficial, it certainly presents challenges when it comes to space…or lack thereof.

 This means that as someone who works from home, while also playing the at-home parenting role, it’s often difficult finding space to call my own when it comes to my work, a portion of which includes online selling.  This online sales role requires a variety of materials to make it successful, and setting up a home business center in a small living space has proved a challenge.  I’ve found certain ways to make our small space work for my business needs though.

With space at a premium, I try to keep the things I sell online small.  By reducing the size of my products to envelopes or small box-size, I minimize the amount of space I need to keep a decent stock of inventory on hand.  Items like books, CDs, DVDs, coins, and similar sized things are easier to keep in our small space than items like larger electronics, dishware, lamps, artwork, and other larger, bulkier items.  In this way, I can lay everything out in my small business center sales space so that I can see what I have listed to sell, what’s waiting to be listed, and what I have in reserve inventory.

Devoting an area
Speaking of my sales and business center area, I have a specific space designated for this work.  With two small children in our home, I have chosen a large dresser, which allows me a flat surface upon which to spread out my shipping supplies, printer, scale, and sale items.  This also means that the dresser’s top is high enough to be out of reach of little hands, which keeps kid messes to a minimum.

This space is specifically for my business purposes and is not to be cluttered up with anything that is not business related (i.e. toys, clothes, homework, etc.).

Staying organized
Keeping my small workspace organized may be one of the most difficult aspects of having a home business center.  I’ve learned that by designating specific spots on this worktop for certain items, it makes it easier to give each item a home and keep everything in its place.  It also makes it quicker and easier to find things when I’m busy since I know exactly where to look for them.  Envelopes are in one spot.  Tape, the stapler, scissors, and paper clips are in another.  Bubble wrap and other packing materials are found in another space.  Ink refills are in another, and inventory in another.  By reducing clutter, it also helps me know when I’m getting low on supplies.

In this way, while space is limited, I maximize what’s available to me and make it work by getting organized and staying that way.


The author is not a licensed financial professional.  This article is for informational purposes only and does not constitute advice of any kind.  Any action taken by the reader due to the information provided in this article is solely at the reader’s discretion.

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