Dare to Dream — and Build

Outdoor Living Space Design Considerations For Telecommuting From Your Backyard

by Marc Cole

According to research, there are many benefits to physical health and mental health from being outdoors, including an increase in focus and attention. For people who have started telecommuting from home due to the global pandemic, expanding their working space to include outdoor living space can benefit them in their employment capacity. Here are a few aspects to consider when designing an outdoor living space that can double as an outdoor home office.


Direct sunlight or glare from sunlight on your monitor makes it very difficult to get any work done. Therefore you will need to create a space where there is enough shade to allow you to see the monitor without straining your eyes. If you don't have any shade trees in your backyard or there is no room to place seating underneath shade trees, you can create a shady spot by using a large umbrella or by having a trellis or pergola constructed by a landscaping company.

Ideally, the shade will allow you to maintain a permanent seating area throughout the day. A landscape design contractor can help you determine which part of your backyard would be ideal for maintaining a shaded area where you can work. 


Another thing you'll need to consider is electricity. If you plan on sitting outdoors and working on your laptop for extended periods of time, it may be best to install electrical outlets outdoors. However, you'll need to check with your local building code ordinances first, to determine whether or not you can have electrical outlets in your backyard and, if so, if permits are required. 

Ideally, electrical outlets can be installed directly on the legs of a trellis or pergola so they are located exactly where you will need them. And, this location will help protect the outlets from the elements of weather. 


The seating is equally as crucial for your outdoor office. You can design a seating area that will double as your workspace as well as entertain guests and where you and your family members can relax. Since the seating will double as a living space, you'll want it to be comfortable and be multi-purpose. Perhaps a side table can be used as a workstation when you use the space as your office and as a traditional side table when the space is used for outdoor living.

Contact an outdoor living space design team to learn more about how your backyard can be designed and transformed to give you more space for work and play.