Murphy Beds and Working from Home: Turning a Guest Bedroom into an Office


Plenty of our homes have an additional bedroom that we like to describe as an “office/guest room combo.” In reality, what many of us have is a glorified storage room. Sure, there’s a bed, and in a pinch, the clutter can get stacked against the wall to make space for an overnight guest. But this room deserves so much better.

Here are some tips that will turn this guest bedroom/home office into a truly functional space that you and your guests will love!

Convertibility is the key to making this room work. Because the bed will take up most of the space in this room, it’s best if you can tuck the bed away somewhere when you need to get work done.

A Small, Unobtrusive Desk Works Best

When guests do stay over, you want them to feel as if they have their own personal space in your home. If your guest room/home office is dominated by a large desk, however, it might make them feel like they’ve intruded on your personal space. A smaller desk will make the room more inviting for guests.

Consider a Rolling Desk

A rolling desk will definitely keep the room convertible. When guests are coming over, you can simply roll your workspace into a corner, a closet, or another room if possible.

Keep Your Workspace Simple So You Can Pack It Away Easily

A messy desk can make your guest room seem cramped and uninviting. By keeping your workstation clean and tidy, it’s easier to put everything away when guests come over, and you’ll make your guests feel more at home.

Open Shelving Makes Tidy Storage Look Great

With open shelving, the room looks a little more convertible between office and guest room modes. Anything that normally goes on the desk can be tucked away into a basket and placed on the shelf for easy access once your guest departs.

Use Containers Liberally on Your Shelves

Too many storage containers on your shelves can make your guest room feel more like a storage room. Stick to visually pleasing containers and leave some open space on your shelves.

Don’t Put Too Much Furniture in the Room

This room doesn’t need much more than a bed, a desk, some storage space, and perhaps a chair. By taking a minimalist approach to designing, you create a space that can be shaped for multiple purposes.

Soften the Room with Cushy Textures

Rugs, pillows, throw blankets—all of these little touches will make a space feel more cozy. Your productivity and your guests will appreciate this detail.

The Key Is to Make the Room Simple Yet Cozy

Although this room has to strike a balance between your needs as a workspace with your guests’ needs, there is definitely common ground here. Both you and your guests need a little serenity so you can concentrate and so they can get a good night’s sleep. Simplicity and coziness go a long way to creating that environment.


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