By Bond Collective Staff
Many of the pros and cons of working from home vary based on your likes, dislikes, work style, and personality. Before you make the move from a traditional office to a home-based office, it’s vital to examine yourself, how you work, and the advantages and disadvantages of telecommuting.
In this article, we’ll reveal the most common pros and cons of working from home to help you decide if remote work is right for you.
Pros Of Working From Home
1) No Commute
If you’re fortunate enough to live within a few minutes of your office, you’re definitely in the minority. The average commute time is around 30 minutes, but in more populated areas, that commute can stretch to two hours or more through bumper-to-bumper traffic.
But for those who work from home, the commute can be as short as 10 seconds (the walk from the breakfast table to the computer desk). That’s a huge reduction in stress.
2) Decrease In Overhead
Reporting to a traditional office every day is more expensive than you might think. You have to pay for:
Gas and repairs for your vehicle
When you work from home, those expenses all but disappear.
You might still splurge on a coffee or a meal out now and again, but it’s not an every-day event. And one or two professional outfits are enough when you can work in your sweats all day. Plus, the transportation costs drop to zero, and that tank of gas will last two weeks instead of two days.
3) Saved Time
Time is one of our most valuable resources. And too often, we waste a significant amount of it on unproductive activities (like commuting or getting ready to go to work in the morning).
Working from home eliminates those delays and allows you to be more productive with your limited time. Instead of spending two hours in the morning getting dressed and commuting to work, you could spend those same two hours exercising and eating a healthy breakfast.
4) Flexible Work Hours
One of the many pros of working from home is the flexible work hours. Because you set your own schedule, you can work when you feel the most productive. For some, that may be early in the morning. For others, it may be the usual 9-to-5.
For yet others, the ideal working hours may be late at night. In most cases — though it will depend on your specific industry or career — as long as you get the work done on time, it doesn’t matter when you do it.
Those same flexible work hours also allow you more room for personal appointments and activities. Now you can take that doctor’s appointment at 10 a.m. or pick your kids up at school instead of arranging for a ride.
5) More Time With Family
Working from home frees up time you can spend with your family and friends.
You won’t have to contend with a long commute that saps your energy. You can work in the morning and play with the kids in the afternoon. You can attend school events that you would otherwise miss because you were at work.
When you work in a traditional office, your manager or immediate supervisor makes many of the decisions for you (e.g., structure, routine, procedures, priorities). But when you work at home, you have more autonomy to make your own decisions regarding certain aspects of your job.
7) Work/Life Balance
Many individuals who work from home enjoy a better work/life balance. They find that they have more time for:
Important personal activities
When you work in a traditional office, you often forego these important personal activities because you spend a large portion of your day at work (or commuting to and from the office).
An increase in work/life balance can mean the difference between job satisfaction and job dissatisfaction — and, ultimately, a happy life and an unhappy life.
Cons Of Working From Home
Of the many pros and cons of working from home, the self-discipline required to be successful at remote work is a significant hurdle to overcome.
Not everyone can maintain the focus necessary to produce quality work outside of an office environment. The temptation to sleep in, take the day off, or just surf the internet is too great to overcome.
2) No Human Interaction
If you enjoy the social aspect of working in a traditional office, working from home may not be for you.
Unless you have kids, a spouse, or roommates who are at home during the day, you’re going to spend a large chunk of your time alone. This lack of human interaction can be difficult for some and may affect their productivity and success.
Keeping your work life and personal life separate is a real challenge when you work from home. You may find it difficult to switch off the work part of your brain when you’re finished for the day.
Your whole life begins to revolve around work, and you may start subconsciously dedicating more and more of your free time to getting that one last thing done. Do that too much and your productivity will suffer, eventually leading to burnout.
Yes, working in a traditional office presents several distractions — coworkers moving around, ambient noise, conversations, etc. But working from home introduces a whole new set of distractions.
You may not have the activity of coworkers to tune out, but you must still contend with the potential distractions that come from simply being at home every day.
Surfing the internet
Without strong self-discipline and focus, these distractions can easily get the better of you and cut into your productivity.
5) No Collaboration
For many, collaboration at work is the source of much creativity. Without that collaboration, innovation and ingenuity suffer.
Similarly, if the rest of your team work together in a traditional office and you’re the only one working from home, you can miss out on important information that individuals come up with and talk about at the spur of the moment.
6) Loss Of Living Space
Working at home requires that you carve out some type of office space. At the most basic, you may occupy the kitchen table or a chair that someone else may need to use. On the other end of the spectrum, you may have a desk all to yourself (or even a whole room).
Regardless of whether you work from your kitchen table or a home office, you lose living space in the process. With the kitchen-table setup, you have to move your work materials at the start and end of each day. With the home office, you may be losing out on a guest bedroom or a home gym.
7) Payment Difficulties
One of the most frustrating cons of working from home is difficulty receiving payments.
There are many online tools that make this important activity possible, but it all comes down to the person at the other end of the transaction. If they are late making a payment — or even refuse to do so outright — your bottom line can take a serious hit.
Experience More Pros And Fewer Cons With A Coworking Space
A good coworking space can’t reduce your payment difficulties or increase your self-discipline, but it can remedy many of the other items in the Cons Of Working From Home section.
Your office won’t occupy valuable living space in your home or apartment. You’ll get all the collaboration and human interaction you crave. And you can prevent burnout by separating your work life from your home life.
Whether it’s a hot desk (first-come, first-served), a dedicated desk, or a private office, the coworking spaces at Bond Collective provide exactly what you need to “work from home” effectively and successfully.
Plus, you’ll enjoy amenities that you don’t get at home and can’t find anywhere else, such as:
Guest reception and greeting
Private meeting and phone booths
Insanely fast WiFi
Complimentary beer, coffee, and tea
Daily on-site cleaning
Food and beverage market
Complimentary fresh fruit and spa water
Photo and sound studio (Gowanus only)
And much more...
Visit our gorgeous office spaces in New York (Bushwick, 55 Broadway, 60 Broad, Gowanus, Flatiron) and Philadelphia (Station House) to experience the best that luxury office environments have to offer.