Protection will grow in importance over the coming years.

The pandemic has meant that our homes have become an extension of our offices. 46% of people claim that their workspace is improvised and temporary, set up using the furniture they already had in their home, while 33% say that they have a workspace containing basic work equipment (Source: Actiu). Going beyond improvised solutions, work is set to become an activity that is regularly carried out from home as part of our new reality, meaning that finding a work-life balance must be taken into account in plans for new homes.

Drivers of change

The pandemic has had a clear influence on the amount of people who now work from home. All things considered, all research seems to point in the same direction: the amount of people who work from home at least one day a week will certainly increase. It is estimated that by the end of 2021, 25% to 30% of the work force will be performing their duties from the comfort of their own home (Source: Global Workplace Analytics, April 2020). 75% of financial directors want their employees who were working from the office before the coronavirus pandemic to switch to remote work after it (Source: Gartner). 

Simultaneously, many countries are introducing national policies to attract foreign remote workers. The government of Barbados, for example, has announced a new initiative for 12-month work visas. Spain and Japan are also investing in improving their Wi-Fi infrastructure. In the case of Japan, the country has rolled out a programme to entice international teleworkers to come, stay and work in accommodation in its national parks. 

Alongside this new phenomenon, the furniture rental sector is poised to keep growing. By way of example, Fernish, a rental company, recorded a 315% increase in orders for home office equipment during the pandemic-hit months of 2020. 

“Openness to the exterior, workspaces and study will be the main items to consider, together with creating more calming atmospheres with light and colourful materials”.
María del Valle, Interior Staging.

The result

Workspaces will become integrated into properties, while ironing out the creases made evident since the onset of the crisis. Finding a separation between work and personal life is one of the matters that must be solved. A quarter of British workers believe that there is too much of an overlap between work and personal life, making it difficult for them to switch off, 13% greater than pre-Covid levels. Mental health professionals are already worried about so-called “Zoom fatigue” as one of the main causes of stress. However, research has found that we are 12% more productive when working from home, especially during moments requiring greater concentration (Source: Gensler Research Institute). 

The introduction of home offices has required finding solutions for easily integrating and hiding the office in the home, like flexible products that have multiple uses, both in work and in other aspects of our private life. Health will also be key, as witnessed by a 2,484% rise in searches for “ergonomic office chairs” and a 942% increase in searches for “folding desks” during the pandemic.

Design keys

Smart partitions

Simple and practical division solutions that enable us to quickly reconfigure spaces and create more multifunctional rooms.


This portmanteau of closet and office deals with small workspaces that can be hidden in wardrobes or built into kitchens, helping establish a clearer separation between work and personal life.


This is one of the most important aspects to consider when devising workspaces in the home.

Less is more

Small solutions for work that do not take up a large space at home.

Work-life balance

The entry of work into our home life has given rise to various points of contention, such as finding it difficult to disconnect and sharing the space with others. Although much has been said of flexible offices and open spaces, there is also a real need to physically separate them.

Case studies

Stockholm by Mario Ruiz for Punt Mobles. 

A housing project in South Korea designed by Yuko Shibata featuring mobile vertical partitions. Photography: Ryohei Hamada.
An office furniture collection by Actiu created especially for homes.
Muji has launched a home product rental service, focused mainly on home office furniture, offering monthly and annual subscription options and available in Japan.

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Panasonic has released its Komoru space divider which allows you to set up a workspace in less than 15 minutes. This pegboard boasts plenty of space for storing accessories.

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