As more and more of us chose to work from home, when possible, setting up a home office becomes a necessity. Once one gets tired working from a kitchen table or from a recliner, thoughts of having a real office takes shape. But before your run out and spend a ton of money furnishing your new office, take heed to what others are recommending. By following a few easy tips, you can save a bundle on your home office.
Cut your printing costs
One easy way to do that? Change your font type. “Choosing a different font could yield more pages per ink cartridge,” she says.
Try an ink saving font like ecofont which is a free open source font. It is also known as the ‘font with holes’ You can save an estimated 25% on your ink by downloading this font from this link. I use the eco font and it works perfectly.
When you run out of ink, refill your existing ink cartridge rather than buying a new one. “You can buy ink by the litre which is probably the biggest savings you can get, reducing your printing costs by up to 90%,” says John Scott, CEO of IQComputers.net. If you have an inkjet printer, do print a couple of things out every few weeks to keep the nozzles wet. Otherwise you may need to replace the cartridge which is an unnecessary expense.
Other common ways to save ink include printing in draft mode or in gray-scale or black ink only. Printing double-sided, on the other hand, will help you save printer paper.
Explore garage sales
They’re a great place to find cheap supplies, says Francine DiFilippo Kent from Arcadia, Fla. She recently bought several packages of paper, file folders, a box of staples, an electric stapler, two boxes of ball point pens, highlighters, fine point mirco pens and a desk tray. Her total tab? $10.
Garage sales are also a great place to look for office furniture: why spend a fortune on a new desk or office chair when you could probably find one in great condition at a fraction of the price?
Buy in bulk and buy early
If you don’t want to take a chance with second-hand office supplies bought off a garage sale, head to a warehouse club like Costco or Sam’s Club. Better yet, if the item you picked up at the store is damaged in any way, ask for a discount. (Make sure that the damage has not deemed the item useless, of course.)
Also, check out your local dollar store: they tend to have great prices on pens, pencils and notebooks.
I always buy in bulk especially when cases of copy paper are on sale. You can save up to 50% by buying a case of paper, instead of buying by the ream. I use copy paper for my printing needs because it costs less and the results are acceptable.
Don’t use the fax machine
You will easily cut your monthly business telephone line costs, says Scott. “We dropped our fax line and have yet to find a business that couldn’t email us what they wanted to fax. It saves us $780 annually in phone line, plus additional savings in paper, toner and the interruption to physically get to the fax machine,” he says.
You also save money by not using a fax by not receiving spam messages as well.
If you need to track your business expenses try Mint. This free software can keep track of your finances and also provide handy graphs to use. You can get Mint free from here.
Do you have any suggestions to save money setting up a home office?