With the explosion in the popularity of work-from-home setups, finding the right place to put your desktop computer has become a lot more important.
Set your desktop up in the right spot and your productivity will skyrocket. Set your desktop up in a less than ideal spot, though, and you’ll be dealing with a world of distraction, dust, potential damage to your desktop, and a bunch of other problems you might not have considered.
But that’s why we’ve put together this detailed guide.
By the time you finish, you’ll know:
- Why it’s so important to really think about where to put your desktop
- Seven of the best spots to set your home desktop up
- Important mistakes to avoid when setting up your desktop
… And that’s just scratching the surface!
Ready to get started?
Why It’s Important to Think About Where You Put Your Desktop
Setting up your desktop isn’t as easy as plugging in a couple of cables and plopping it down in the first spot you think of.
Sure, you might have a couple of spots already “preselected” for your new desktop setup – especially if you’ve been working from home for a while now.
Even those who are relatively new to the remote working world have found different spots in their home that are more productive than others.
But when you’re talking about a desktop PC – a pretty big, pretty noisy, pretty heavy piece of computing technology that always has multiple accessories attached – it’s not quite as easy as figuring out where to set up a laptop.
Your ability to be productive will be determined almost entirely by where you set up your desktop.
Set it up in a busy space in your home – think the kitchen counter, the kitchen table, the living room, etc. – and you’re going to end up with a world of distractions.
Set it up in the dark corner of the basement that no one goes into, though, and you’re going to be dealing with feelings of isolation, which can kill productivity just as quickly.
It’s really critical that you knock this decision right out of the park.
Get your desktop set up correctly, and you’ll be amazed at how much work you’re able to get done working from home, even if you aren’t necessarily set up in a traditional “home office”.
Now let’s run through some of the spots you want to consider putting your desktop in.
Seven Spots to Consider
These are by no means the only places you might want to put your desktop computer, but they should help inform your decision all the same.
Keep all of these spots in mind when you are trying to figure out exactly where your desktop fits best in your home (and your life).
Some of these recommended spots will be better suited for some compared to others, and some of them are pretty universal across the board.
Zero in on the spots, though, and you’ll have a much easier time setting up your desktop, for sure.
On Your Desk
Many people have managed to solve this task by simply dropping their desktops directly on top of their desks.
This does a couple of things really well.
For starters, it takes a lot of the decision-making out of the equation. You have a desk, you have available real estate on that desk, and you slap your desktop computer on top of it.
Bit of a no-brainer, right?
You also don’t have to worry about a lot of accidental damage that could happen to your desktop set up elsewhere.
When it’s up off of the ground it’s going to be away from errant fee, things that get dropped, as well as a time of dust, dirt, and debris that can gum it up, too.
Maybe you need to keep things simple by simply sticking it on top of your desk.
Under Your Desk
Of course, not everybody has a huge playing field on the top of their desk, and adding a computer tower into the mix is going to chew up a lot of valuable real estate that could have been used more productively by leaving it open.
For example, trying to write in a full-sized notebook while having a desktop tower, a monitor, your mouse, your keyboard, your phone or your tablet, and all the cables you need to connect everything together on your desk is a nightmare.
In these situations, sticking your desktop down on the floor can keep things a lot less cluttered.
You’ll have to worry a little about protecting your desktop if you set it on the floor, though, for the reasons that we highlighted above.
But a bit of thought and planning can mitigate a lot of those risks, for sure.
Near a Window
Truth be told, situating your desk near a window – and making sure that your desktop computer is the heartbeat of your workstation near that window, too – can be an excellent choice or a terrible thing.
Some people love to have a view to look out, something to break up the monotony of working from home, and something to sort of help them feel like they aren’t “trapped” inside all day long.
Other folks, though, have a lot of action happening outside their windows – an action they find really, really distracting.
At the end of the day, it really all comes down to your personal preference and how well you handle working in front of windows with life going on the other side.
There are plenty of people that feel like working near a window (even if they aren’t facing it) gives a big boost to their mental health.
That could be a big piece of the puzzle for you!
In a Space Dedicated to Work Only
One of the most important things you need to do when working from home is clearly delineating your “work” space from your “living” space.
Too often people new to the world of remote work (and people that work from home in general) allow these two worlds not just to collide with one another, but to really blend in with one another as well.
This inevitably creates a lot of chaos.
If you don’t have a space that you feel is completely dedicated to working (and work alone) you’re going to find yourself either working much longer hours than you ever did before – with no real “off switch” – or working very little because the rest of your life keeps interfering.
The best way to stop that from happening is to set up your desktop in a space you can dedicate to work and work alone.
When you enter that space, you are “punching in”. When you leave that space, you are “punching out” – and that’s it for the day.
Somewhere Safe and Secure
It’s (obviously) a good idea to make sure that your desktop is located somewhere that it can be safe and secure.
This is, after all, a workstation first and foremost. And that means it’s going to have important documents, important files, and important data on it.
You definitely don’t want anything to happen to your work computer.
You don’t want it to be stolen, you don’t want it to be damaged, and you don’t want it to be accidentally destroyed, either.
Always try and find a place that is safe and secure to talk your desktop away.
It’ll give you a lot of peace of mind, which will inevitably boost your productivity as well.
Finding someplace quiet can make a huge difference in your productivity levels, too.
You don’t necessarily need complete and total silence to be productive. In fact, many people find completely silent spaces really uncomfortable.
At the same time, trying to get any work done while you have your favorite TV shows in the background, a movie you’ve been wanting to watch playing in the middle of your work hours, or just a lot of background noise – and countless distractions – will tank your productivity big time.
Avoid these problems by strategically setting up your desktop (and your main workspace) in a spot that is a lot quieter, a lot calmer, and in a space where you can control the volume level.
If that’s definitely going to be a problem, no matter what, it’s a good idea to invest in high-quality noise-canceling headphones.
You’ll be able to block out ambient noise, boost your productivity, and have a lot more control over the volume of your space all at the same time with that approach.
Somewhere Cool and Dust Free
Finally, it’s important to pick a cool spot, that is as dust-free as possible, and that helps to optimize the performance of you and your new hardware.
Desktop computers run hotter than laptops, especially if you are doing a lot of resource-intensive work on these stations. They are bigger, they are bulkier, and they always have “heavier duty” hardware tucked under the hood.
If these kinds of machines are put into spots that are already pretty warm, they are only going to make things worse. You’ll feel like you are working next to a small forge or giant oven!
It’s also important to keep out the dust and as much debris as possible.
Any of these microscopic little bits are going to inevitably gum up your desktop, getting sucked through the air vents before collecting on top of all of your core components.
That’s going to make your heat problem even worse, insulating these components and potentially causing them to fry out.
Avoid these problems by picking cooler spaces with as little dust as possible.
You’ll also want to regularly “blowout” your computer, double-check your temperatures, and do a bit of preventative maintenance just to make sure you are good to go!
Keep these things in mind moving forward and you won’t have a whole lot to worry about when it comes to setting up a desktop computer in your home.
You’ll be able to find the right spot pretty easily, but don’t be afraid of doing a little bit of trial and error. The first spot you pick in your home doesn’t necessarily have to be the permanent home for your desktop, either.
Armed with the tips above you should be able to set up your new remote office in record time.
Best of luck!
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