Staying cool in the summer working from home as a Virtual Assistant without spending tons on air conditioning can be a real challenge.
And if there’s one place where you want to be able to work comfortably, it’s your home office. With a little creativity and planning, you can keep your office cool in the summer for less.
#1) Work naked. Just kidding!
Though, you can wear less during the summer months and help keep your body temperature lower. And if you’re working alone in your home office, well no one really knows what you’re wearing, or not wearing.
#2) Purchase, and use, thermal-backed curtains.
These curtains keep the cold out during the winter months and they block the sun’s rays during the summer months. Keep all curtains closed on windows when the sun is streaming directly into your office. If you have a southern exposure, it will likely mean your curtains are closed all day. Not ideal because you’ll have to rely on overhead lighting in your office rather than natural daylight. However, blocking the heat from the sun’s intense rays will help keep your office quite a bit cooler.
#3) Use fans.
There’s an abundance of fan types that you can use. You can install a ceiling fan to pull up the warm air to keep the room cooler. This type of fan can be reversed in the winter to help keep your office warmer too. You can also purchase little fans that plug into your USB port and help keep you, and your computer, cooler.
Additionally, the old trick of putting a fan in an open window and turning it so it faces outside works well to pull hot air out of your office. Of course, if the air outside is cooler than the air inside, turn the fan around and let it pull the cooler air into your office.
And desktop fans are always an option.
#4) Turn off electronics – completely.
Printers, computers, televisions and any other electronics generate heat. The more electronics you have on, the warmer your office is going to feel. And it’s going to cost a bit to cool down your office not to mention the fact that you’re paying to keep the electronics on.
Turn off anything you’re not using. Turn it off at the power source rather than just pushing the off button. Plugging electronics into a power strip and turning off the entire strip is a great way to take care of this.
#5) Drink plenty of water.
Not a tip really as you should be doing this every day to stay hydrated and to keep your body replenished which in turn keeps your mind focused on the business at hand. Use this tumbler to keep your water cool.
Keeping your home office cooler in the summer doesn’t have to cost a fortune. Pay careful attention to not let it get too warm because cooling it down to a comfortable level will take a lot of energy. Stay cool and have a great summer!
What are your summer secrets to staying cool working from home as a Virtual Assistant?
Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in June, 2012 and has been completely revamped and updated for accuracy and comprehensiveness.