Articles concerning Office in Home 

Equipping Your Home Office - Part 2

By: Vishal P. Rao

© Vishal P. Rao

Choosing Home Office Equipment

In Part 1 of this article we discussed how to select office
furnishings and why making the right choices were crucial to
your comfort and ability to remain organized. In Part 2 we
will take a look at your basic home office equipment needs.

1. Computers

The type of computer that's best for you depends upon the
type of work that you do, and whether you spend all of your
time in your home office, or go out on the road to meet
clients. While there are a seemingly endless choice of makes
and models, there are essentially only three basic choices.

For most home office situations, the desktop computer reigns
supreme. However, if you are on the road a lot then you can
find notebook computers with nearly the same horsepower as
the best desktop. If you do choose a notebook, the consider
one that has an available docking station. That way, when
you are in your home office, you can easily use a standard
keyboard, mouse, and monitor.

Even if you have a desktop or notebook, you might have room
in your life for a Personal Digital Assistant (PDA). PDAs,
such as those from Palm Computing, can be a very valuable
personal productivity tool especially if you need real-time
access to your appointments, to-do lists, and phone numbers.
With the growing popularity of wireless Internet access you
can even use your PDA to connect to your home office
computer no matter where you are.

2. Printers

Your first decision is what type of technology to go with
--laser or ink jet. Laser printers use a toner
cartridge/drum assembly while ink jets accept ink tank
cartridges. Lasers are generally better for high-volume
printing and have higher duty cycles--the manufacturer's
rating for the unit's recommended monthly workload. Lasers
also produce better-quality black text than most ink jets,
though some ink-jet models rival low-end lasers.

Lasers are also faster than ink jets, but ink jets offer a
lower cost model if you need to print in color. Color laser
printers are still very expensive. Since the prices for
laser and ink jets are so low, you could consider buying one
of each.

Another important item to consider is resolution. A
printer's resolution determines the overall print quality of
your documents. Resolution means the number of dots per inch
that appear on the page as a horizontal and vertical
measurement such as 600 x 600 dots-per-inch or dpi. A 600 x
600 dpi resolution produces adequate quality for most

Your final deciding factor is speed. While printers rarely
perform up to the manufacturer's claims, you should still
use the printer's posted performance specifications as a
guideline. An acceptable speed for personal laser printers
is around 6 to 10 pages per minute. An acceptable range for
ink jet printers is 4 ppm or above.

There are printers that do double, triple, or even quadruple
duty as a fax, copier, and scanner as well. You should
consider buying one of these models if you have a need for
all of this equipment.

3. Internet access

Today you have a wide choice of Internet access protocols.
If you access the Internet only to check your email, and
browse the web a bit, then you might be able to get by with
an inexpensive dial-up account. This type of access
generally runs around $9.95 per month and up.

If constant, high-speed Internet access is a requirement for
your home office business, then you need to step up to
either Digital subscriber lines (DSL), or a cable modem.
Both provide sufficient speed for any type of business that
you are likely to run out of a home office.

DSL utilizes unused bandwidth on your existing telephone
lines to provide a constant connection, while cable modems
use your existing cable television network. DSL may not be
available in your area. It depends upon your telephone
company's technology and how far you are from a DSL access

Cable, on the other hand, is available in all but the most
remote markets. Still, if you can't get either, then there
is always the possibility of a satellite uplink. While this
was considered extravagant only a few years ago, it's
affordable and no more trouble than installing a small dish
antenna on your home and signing up for the service.

4. Telephones

No matter how high-tech your home office is, the telephone
is still the most basic and essential of your business
tools. Available features are at an all-time high and prices
are at an all time low. Almost any home office phone on the
market comes equipped with programmable speed-dial numbers,
multiple-line capability, speakerphone operation, conference
call capability, and headset jacks. In addition, your local
phone company offers a wide array of add-on services such as
called id, voice mail, flat-rate long distance and more.

If your work keeps you up and around your home office, or if
you like to take business calls while out on your patio or
while walking around your home, then a cordless phone is a
joy to have. There are so many makes and models to choose
from that it almost seems like you need a consultant to help
you make the right choice. It's not really that hard. Just
keep the following in mind:

a) Choose the right technology

Avoid analog phones at all costs. Analog phones are
susceptible to interference from other devices and range is
very limited. Also, analog phones permit eavesdropping
through baby monitors and other cordless phones.

Digital phones have greater range than analog phones plus
they offer better call privacy through the use of random
codes that scramble communications between handset and base

Digital Spread Spectrum (DSS) is the best of breed for right
now. The Spread Spectrum technology uses multiple channels
and frequency hopping to thoroughly scramble communicate
between the handset and base unit. You also get increased
range due to decreased electrical interference, plus DSS
phones are permitted to use more powerful transmitters.

b) Frequency

The range of your cordless phone also depends upon its
assigned radio frequency. Most home office phones fall into
three frequencies.

900 MHz: This is by far the worst choice. This frequency is
crowded with devices such as baby monitors, pagers, and cell
phones, and is subject to maximum interference. A 900-MHz
phone has a range of around 1,500 feet and prices start at

2.4 GHz: While once the best choice available, the 2.4-GHz
spectrum is overrun with wireless networking, microwaves,
and other devices. A 2.4-GHz phone has a range of 2,200 feet
and pricing starts around $50.

5.8 GHz: This is the latest unlicensed spectrum available
for wireless devices. Very few devices operate in this
spectrum so there is a marked reduction in interference. A
5.8-GHz phone also boasts a range of around 2,200 feet and
start at about $150.

c) Other considerations

Make sure that any phone you select has a headset jack, and
then invest in a headset. There is nothing worse than
cradling your phone on your shoulder while you consult your
files or try to type something on your keyboard. A headset
frees both hands while you talk.

Don't forget to take a look at your potential phone's
battery life as well. Most cordless phones offer at least
four hours of talk time and seven days of standby. Make sure
that your phone uses replaceable battery packs, and that the
battery packs are widely available.

One last thought. Cordless phones are useless without power,
so always keep a regular corded phone handy for blackout

In Summary

There is a lot more to equipping an efficient home office
than first meets the eye. Hopefully this two-part series
gets you going in the right direction. Chances are
everything that you buy for your home office is tax
deductible. Check with your accountant to be sure.

Vishal P. Rao is the owner of: - An online community of people who work at home.


For Tax Preparation Services 866-331-1040
Recorvery Rebate Credit
Mileage Deductions
Car Donation Deductions
Bad Debt Right Off
Hybrid Cars Deductions
Tax Cash Today at Western Union
CPA Moms - Services Offered
Tax Preparation
Electronic Filing
Enrolled Agents
Tax Moms
Recovery Rebate Credit
CPA Moms
Representation before IRS
Non Profit Tax Services
CPA Loan Letter
$7500 Downpayment for your Home
Office in Home Page
Office in Home News
Office in Home Articles
Want to Join CPA Moms?
Questions for CPA Moms?
For Tax Preparation Services 866-331-1040

Related Articles and Information
  • Putting a Work Area in Your Home
    When you work from home, one of the hardest things to get right is knowing where to do your work. In your bedroom? In a special home office? Well, here are a few pointers.
    A Dedicated Space is Best
    I really...
  • Feng Shui Tips for Your Home Office - Part 1
    Part I: Choosing Your Work SpaceMany home offices are set up in whatever space is available: in a corner of the bedroom, on the dining room table, down in the basement, or upstairs in the attic or in the...
  • Benefits of Working from Home
    If you've ever dreamed of working from home in shorts and a T-shirt, you're not alone. There are more than 50 million Americans working at least part-time from residences, enjoying convenience, tax deductions...
  • Tips For Finding Your Ideal Home Office Space
    Have you imagined yourself working at home?Many people are finding it more convenient and beneficial to work at home, especially with the proliferation of computer-related technologies. The tools required...
  • Necessary Items For Your Home Office
    Ok, so you have decided to start your own home-based business, what next? Well there are a few things you should do before you open the doors. Since you will be working from home you will have many distractions...
  • What You Need for the Well Equipped Office
    More and more of us are choosing to forgo the nine to five world and opening our own businesses. Whether you have an office in your home or you rent office space for your new business venture, it is important...
  • Home Office Furniture At A Glance
    Working at home is no longer the stranger that it was years ago. Many individuals are choosing to avoid the commute for many reasons and, thanks to advanced technology, a work at home career is just a...
  • Creating A Corporate Image From Your Spare Bedroom
    Like it or not, there is still a segment of the population who will erroneously conclude that you and your business are less than professional and competent just because you run your business out of your...
  • Creating A Space For Your Home Business
    One of the great privileges of direct selling profession is being able to work from home. But with the freedom of your career, also come the challenges. The sink is full of dishes, your son left his crayons...
  • Home Business Tax Tips
    If you have recently started an Internet or home business, you're probably a little intimidated by having to submit a tax return and the possibilities of being audited. Simply follow these guidelines and...
  • Furnishing Your Home Office
    There are a wide variety of choices when looking to find the perfect home office chair. It is quite possible to find a chair that offers good ergonomic support and also perfectly matches your home office...
  • Luxury Home Office Remodeling
    Imagine having the privilege of setting your own hours which obviously allows you plenty of time to enjoy a wholesome meal before beginning a hard day of work. To top it off, imagine being able to work...
  • How To Create More Space In Your Home
    You wish you could get a bigger home, but current home prices can make that difficult if not impractical. What can you do? There are many solutions. Here are a few of the most helpful. First, you can use...
  • Telecommuting Job Idea: Virtual Assistant
    One of the newest jobs available today is a virtual assistant. With so many jobs being completed through the internet, having virtual office staff only makes sense. It helps companies keep down overhead,...
  • Setting Up Your Dream Home Office Space
    One of the great privileges of the direct selling profession is being able to work from home. But with the freedom of your career, also come the challenges. The sink is full of dishes, your son left his...
  • Are You Getting the Most Out of Your Home?
    When you buy a home, you are also buying a lot of different tax breaks. Make sure that you are taking advantage of them.The associated tax breaks go a long way to make homeownership more affordable. One...
  • Office Furniture for Your Home Office
    If you are looking to create a home office or you are looking to redecorate your current one, you will want to consider the various types of office furniture available. Having the right office-furniture...
  • Lease Purchasing Is The Perfect Home-Based Business
    Some call it the 30 second commute. We call it wonderful. What are we all talking about? Working from home, of course. There's nothing more satisfying than operating a successful business from your own...
  • Home Office Essentials Part One
    So you've decided to set up your own business. You're following the same route taken by thousands of new entrepreneurs each day. You've settled on your business idea, designed a marketing strategy and...
  • Bring the Outdoors into Your Home Office
    Having an office in your home is convenient, but background noise such as ringing telephones, the television and family members chatting in another room can make it difficult to concentrate on the task...
  • Your Home Business Office
    Having an appropriate home business office is just as important as your business itself. Many factors affect how you approach your work at home business including distractions, proper office equipment...
  • Equipping Your Home Office - Part 1
    © 2004 Vishal P. RaoChoosing Home Office FurnitureHaving an adequately equipped home office is essential tobeing productive. It is not necessary that everything bebrand new, nor is it necessary that you...
  • Whiteboards Can Increase Your Daily Productivity?
    Whiteboards are most often associated with an educational setting or maybe even with boring sales seminars. You rarely associate them with anything else. It's amazing how very few entrepreneurs have a...
  • The Right Furniture
    No apartment, home or office is complete without the right furniture. In fact, having the wrong furniture or no furniture at all can make a home feel like nothing more than a uninviting house. Great furniture...
  • Care Free Décor: Artificial Plants And Silk Flowers
    Flowers and plants are wonderful ways to add ambience throughout your home or office. Live flowers and plants can be a burden for a busy homeowner or office manager however, as they must receive the proper...
  • Home Base Business
    Home-based businesses that become successful may end up having to leave the home eventually for expansion. This can be a very hard decision to make for the owner. The idea of now spending more money to...