Remote work exploded onto the scene thanks to COVID, and it doesn’t appear to be going away anytime soon.
More and more companies have decided to move their operations to fully online, or a hybrid model (some days in office and some remote).
With that in mind, you may be wondering if you have all the work from home necessities you need.
Lucky for you, I’ve worked remotely since April 2016 and have curated this list so that you don’t have to wonder if you’re purchasing the right products or equipment!
This post contains affiliate links, which means that I will receive a percentage of any sales made through links in this post, at absolutely no cost to you. I only include products I personally recommend!
Work From Home Necessities: 39 Items You Need to Have
1. Reliable Computer
The most important (and obvious) of the work from home necessities is a reliable computer. You’ll want to make sure you have a fast system that allows you to take video calls, run various programs, and have 30 tabs open at one time (we’ve all been there).
I personally like the Apple MacBook Air because it’s lightweight and has a powerful system. It’s been my go-to computer for the past 5+ years of working from home!
If you need to do more graphic design and video editing, then I’d recommend the MacBook Pro.
If a monitor isn’t on your list of work from home necessities, then trust me, you’ll want to add it.
Believe it or not, I spent the first few years of my remote work career without one, and now that I have one, I can’t imagine going back.
Not only does a monitor allow you to work on multiple screens, but it also takes off the strain of having to look at the smaller laptop screens.
3. Ergonomic Chair
I hate to admit it, but it took me until 2020 to get an ergonomic chair (yikes!).
And my back definitely appreciated it.
Ergonomic chairs are designed to support your body better and help your posture, which is extremely important when you’re sitting at a desk for hours on end.
I personally don’t use one with a headrest, but I do have the armrests that are movable.
You can view a ton of ergonomic chairs here and find the one that works best for you!
I don’t know about you, but I’m not a huge fan of having overhead lights on when I’m working — I much prefer natural light mixed in with a lamp!
I use this LED desktop lamp because it’s easy on my eyes, has warm and cool light tones, and several brightness levels. Another cool feature is that I can adjust the top and bend it up or down, or even turn the base in a circle.
I know that everyone and their mother seems to use their phone reminders and calendars to keep track of tasks, but TRUST ME when I say a planner is one of the work from home necessities you shouldn’t overlook!
There are literally hundreds of different planners to choose from, but here are a few of my favorites:
- Sourcebooks planners – range from motivational to funny
- Blue Sky Day Designer
- Panda Planner – helps increase productivity and time management
- Action Day planners
Ok yes, it may seem a little old school, but the moment your computer shuts down or technology goes haywire, you’re going to wish you had some handwritten notes.
Besides, studies show that handwriting helps you learn more anyway!
Any of these generic college-ruled notebooks should do the trick!
By the time you have your lamp, computer, and monitor on your desk, you’re probably wondering why in the world a tripod would be in a list of work from home necessities.
Well, in my experience, there just never seems to be a good angle for video calls unless I use a desk tripod.
Most of them are versatile enough to hold your phone and webcam, and many are adjustable!
Speaking of webcams… if you want to level up your video calls and have control over where your camera is placed, then you’ll want to invest in one of these.
Logitech webcams are my personal favorite as they’ve always been reliable to me and have worked with every computer I’ve had in my lifetime.
Although most of your paperwork and documents may be held in the cloud or in your computer files, it’s still good to have some shelving around for any physical documents you may get, or books you’re reading to further your skills.
I actually have a built-in shelf in my closet that holds my books, paperwork, and certificates! So if you’re a DIY person, that might be a fun project for you to try.
10. Noise Canceling Headphones or Bluetooth Earbuds
I highly recommend investing in some noise canceling headphones if you are going to be working in a busy house.
They’ll help you maintain your focus and keep your productivity levels up, even if the scene around you seems to be a chaotic mess.
If you don’t need noise canceling headphones but are interested in some Bluetooth earbuds to wear throughout the day, I highly recommend this pair. They have great sound quality and are even waterproof!
11. Wireless Keyboard
Another work from home must-have is a wireless keyboard so that you can position it in front of your monitor without having to worry about your laptop getting in the way!
12. Wireless Mouse
Would you believe that a wireless mouse was the first accessory I bought for working from home? Even before my monitor, keyboard, or even a lamp, I bought this mouse because it was fun and accomplished the job I needed it to.
If you use your mouse a ton, you may want to consider getting an ergonomic mouse to help prevent discomfort in your arm/wrist, or even carpal tunnel.
13. Adapter Equipment
Please tell me I’m not the only one who has ordered new equipment only to have it show up and need an adapter or cable to get it to connect with my other stuff!
For example, I ordered my MacBook Air and completely forgot that they took away the USB ports and everything.
So, guess what?
I had to go back online to find an adapter that would have everything I needed (USB ports, charging port, HDMI port).
Thankfully, this adapter worked perfectly and allowed me to connect my laptop with my monitor, mouse, and keyboard.
Moral of the story: check your equipment before you buy it and make sure you add any adapters to your work from home necessities list so you can get them all at one time.
14. Sticky Notes
Have you ever been in a meeting and needed to jot something down real quick to remember, but then you put it in a notebook, only to have it be lost forever?
(I might be speaking from personal experience.)
This is exactly why I keep sticky notes at my desk at all times now! I can quickly put them on my monitor or desk to remind me what needs to get done, and then just throw them away once complete.
I personally like the sets that come in an assortment of sizes (like this one), but a regular stack will get the job done as well.
15. Surge Protector Power Strip
If you have a ton of electronics plugged in, it’s a good idea to get a surge protector power strip so that your equipment doesn’t bite the dust in the event a storm or power surge comes along.
I bought this GE one for under $10 and it’s done just fine!
16. Reusable Cord Ties
I may just be weird, but I literally can’t stand having cords everywhere on my desk.
Some of them I need to be longer than others, but others I just want to wrap up the slack and hide them behind everything so they’re out of sight, out of mind.
Which is why I use these adjustable cord ties to keep everything looking clean and in-place.
It truly makes a big difference!
17. Laptop Stand
Depending on your desk setup, you may want to consider adding a laptop stand so that you can work standing up (if you have an adjustable desk or are working at a higher table), reduce screen glare, or reduce clutter.
I personally don’t have one yet, but I’ve been looking around and seeing if there’s one that makes sense for my particular office setup.
Personally, I’d really like it for two of the above reasons: reduce screen glare and reduce clutter.
18. Blue Light Glasses
Although there’s still a lot of research to be done on whether blue light glasses are truly effective, there are reviews that these glasses have helped with reducing headaches and eye strain.
I have some friends that swear by them, so if you’re up for trying something new, it’s worth giving them a shot!
One of my absolute top work from home necessities is a blanket that I can curl up in when I’m cold or just want some added comfort.
Whether it be a fluffy blanket for just staying warm or a weighted blanket to help me feel calm (I have this one), I literally can never get enough of them.
20. Space Heater
Here’s another one for those cold winter days when you just can’t seem to get warm at your desk.
If you work in an office or smaller room in your house, any of these space heaters will do the trick.
I also much prefer these kinds because I can sit them on the floor and put them right on my feet (which seems to be the first part of my body that gets cold when I’m just sitting).
If you naturally run hot, work in a stuffy room, or just want to blast some air on your face, then a small desk fan is a great thing to add to your work from home necessities list!
Most are powered with a USB cable and stand no taller than six inches or so.
22. Reusable Water Bottle
I literally take my reusable water bottle with me EVERYWHERE.
I personally use the Contigo autoseal chill stainless steel water bottle, but I know a lot of people have really been into the ones that measure how much water you’ve drank throughout the day (examples here).
And if you don’t have a water filter in your fridge, then make sure you pick up one of these water filter dispensers!
23. Calendar, Bulletin board, or Whiteboard
I find that having a larger visual of your to-do list or daily/weekly/monthly schedule can help you stay on track when it’s right in front of your face.
Depending on your preference, you may want to have a combination of all three things (calendar, bulletin board, and whiteboard), or you may want to choose just one.
24. Easy-to-Grab Healthy Snacks
Working from home means I’m constantly surrounded by what’s in my pantry — and that’s not always a good thing.
Lately, I’ve been making more of an effort to have some healthier snacks close by so that when hunger strikes, I have something nutritious to grab instead of junk food.
The Orchard Valley Harvest snack packs are my go-to because they have a mix of nuts and dried fruit (and not an excessive amount of sugar).
Depending on your job, you may want to purchase a separate microphone so that your audio quality is clear and crisp.
I know a lot of podcasters, YouTubers, and course creators purchase these, but they could also be great for someone in sales who talks to clients regularly.
Here are a few options to consider!
26. Keyboard Cleaner
Your keyboard is bound to get dirt, food, and who knows what else in it over time, so it’s important to keep it clean and working correctly.
This fun cleaning gel pulls dirt away from your keyboard and is reusable!
Or, you can always go the more traditional route and use compressed gas to push air into all the small nooks and crannies under the keys.
27. Cleaning Kit for Monitor and Other Screens
You don’t want to damage your screens, right? Then put down that bottle of cleaner!
Instead, add this screen cleaning kit to your list of work from home necessities. This product won’t scratch your screens, nor will it leave any residue.
28. Mug Warmer
You’ve heated up your coffee, sat at your desk, and then 30 minutes goes by before you’re even able to take a sip of your drink.
By the time you finally get to it, it’s lukewarm.
If this hits too close to home for you, then you need an electric mug warmer!
No more cold beverages. Just plug in your warmer and enjoy whenever it’s convenient for you!
29. Stress Ball or Fidget Toy
True story — I get a flow of adrenaline through my body before almost every client meeting I have.
It’s more exciting energy than anything, but still, I can’t really run around the room and do jumping jacks while I’m on a video call. (Though that would be quite entertaining!)
Instead, I always keep a stress ball nearby that I can have in my hand to get some of the adrenaline out. And it works!
The fun emoji stress balls are my personal favorite, but you can find them in all types of designs and colors to fit your mood and style.
30. Laptop Cooling Pad
Have you ever felt your laptop get really hot and then you start to hear the fan going a mile a minute?
Then you may want to invest in a laptop cooling pad to allow for proper ventilation.
Most are so quiet that you can’t even tell the fans are running!
31. Compact Exercise Equipment
They say that too much sitting is having a terribly negative impact on our overall health.
And while you may not be able to get away from your desk for long periods of time, there are things you can do to at least get your body moving.
One of them is purchasing an under desk bike or elliptical to keep your legs going!
This will help your circulation and metabolism, and hopefully that will turn into you having more energy to get through your work day!
32. Wrist Rest Pad
After working remotely for a while, I realized that my wrist was starting to need a bit more support than I was giving it.
Which is why I purchased a mouse pad with built-in wrist support.
Let me tell you… that was a life-changer.
If you want to go a step further, you could even get one for your keyboard! (Here’s a super cost-effective option.)
33. Ring Light
Is the light in your room not cutting it? Do you want to look better on video?
Then one of your work from home necessities should be a ring light.
Now, don’t think that you need to buy one of those expensive ones that has its own stand and overtakes the entire room.
34. White Noise Machine
Something I love about white noise machines is they can be used for a variety of things.
Some people find that they focus better with white noise in the background, while other people use them to drown out noise from the outside (or prevent people from hearing what’s going on inside the office).
There are a ton of different white noise machines, so think about the sounds that interest you most to find your best fit!
35. Pens, Highlighters, and Any Other Writing Utensils
I’m a sucker for a good ballpoint pen, and these BIC ones have been very good to me over the years.
If you’re the highlighting type, make sure you also pick up a pack of colorful highlighters to help you keep track of important notes you take!
36. Slippers or Cozy Socks
To be honest, I used to be anti-slippers.
Maybe that’s because I spent a lot of my childhood in Arizona where summers were absolutely brutal!
But now that I’m an adult, I can’t get enough of anything cozy that goes on my feet.
And if slippers aren’t your thing, then you can’t go wrong with a good pair of cozy socks!
37. Desk Organizer
I bought this desk organizer back in 2018 and still have nothing but great things to say about it.
It’s so nice to have a dedicated place for my pens, sticky notes, chapstick, and other random desk necessities.
Better than having it scattered all over my desk!
I know that most people don’t need to print things out for work everyday, but it’s a nice-to-have when you do have something that needs mailed out or hand signed.
I get along fine with my HP all-in-one printer, but if you plan on printing a lot, then you’ll want to consider maybe a laser printer or one with a bit more speed.
Although listed last here, this might be the most important of all the work home necessities listed in this post!
Having a functional desk that gives you ample space is crucial.
I also personally like having a desk drawer so that I can keep important documents and some supplies.
Think about your space and how much equipment you have before deciding which one best fits your needs. And don’t forget to take measurements!
What Other Items Would You Consider Work From Home Necessities?
Let us know in the comments!
And while you’re here, be sure to check out some of these other great posts: