Mobile offices are popping up in RVs and campers everywhere. Whether you are a part-time or full-time RVer, an office space gives you the freedom to roam. Let’s explore where we can put them and how to make them functional.
Alright, most of us found a way to work from home during the pandemic. Now that things are looking promising in the health crisis, more and more people are refusing to return to the office and business as usual. I got a taste of freedom as well, and I do not want to give it up. I now teach and write from my RV full time.
Let’s explore some ways to find space and comfort while working.
1. Existing Built-in Desks
When we bought our camper, it had an office area already in the floor plan. I will be honest I almost turned it into an entertainment center. It seemed like a waste of space for my needs. I was hesitant and decided it would be a later project. Whew, I dodged one there. It has become the center of my world. It is perfect for my needs.
This Airstream has an already built-in designated workspace. This is an excellent setup because of the privacy. I teach online in my living room, so while I am teaching, my husband is bound to the bedroom. Having a private space for teaching or personal calls would be ideal.
2. Murphy Desk
My husband built a Murphy desk for me in my last home as a sewing/craft table. It was amazing! I love this idea for those who do not use a desk every day. If you use a desk every day, it may be just as practical to buy an RV with a working area or build one.
This desk is a work of art, has storage, and is a decent size. It is perfect for those who need a desk that doesn’t require a lot of space. It is also customizable to your specific needs.
Check out this video to get all the DIY instructions.
This one comes with some assembly but should be a bit easier to manage. I love that it has a drawer that is accessible at all times. It could be stained or painted to match your room. It is a small desk that adds a lot of workspace and personality.
3. Tuck away Desks
This desk has the same close it and forget it feel of a murphy desk on a larger scale. It features shelves and book racks as well as a good size work area. The door is on wheels so that opening and closing are simple. There is also a locking latch to keep small children out. I am sure you could add a lock if needed.
Here is the DIY video for this model.
This folding desk does not have storage but is very accommodating for those who do not have space to dedicate to a desk. This one can be moved and used in any area and even outdoors, allowing for unlimited options of where you can work for the day.
4. Replace the dining room table
The dining room table is functional. Especially when you have a family living or camping together but a desk may be more practical. If you are traveling alone or with just one companion, sacrificing a dining room table for office space may be a great option. If you are like us, we eat in front of the TV when the weather is terrible and outside whenever we can.
This is an excellent example of the space available for your office. If your dining room is ample enough, it mak accommodate two workstations. This can be a plus if two people need to work simultaneously or you have a family, and the kids need a desk for studies. This is a very simple design to recreate.
This setup also includes double workspaces, storage, and a small fridge. How perfect to have your water handy. I love all the windows. It makes you feel less confined. I would opt for better chairs if I worked in this space every day.
5. Office Under a Bunk
If you have bunks in your rig, you might consider losing both bunks or maybe just the bottom one. This gives a bit of privacy also. I love this idea. I have torn out bunks for other purposes. It isn’t difficult if you a careful.
This office may seem small, but it is also private. This is great for those who get distracted easily. It is also great for those who may not keep their desk tidy as it is tucked out of sight.
This is pure genius. If you have the skill to recreate or locate someone who can, this is a fantastic adaptation. This is a solid option if you need an office but do not want to give up beds. Simply close up the desk and prep the bed for sleep.
6. In the Cock Pit
Want the most comfortable chair in the rig? This is probably the right choice. When parked, the cock pit area sometimes becomes wasted living space. These ideas reclaim the cockpit as usable.
This five monitor set up on a small desk is an excellent use of space for more extensive office needs. It provides a sense of privacy and comfort. The most important thing is a comfortable office area. It can also be a permanent placement without compromising living space.
This RV owner set up an office in the cockpit using a fold-up table that can be removed for travel. If a curtain or door is available, this could allow for a private office. There is no storage in this setup, though.
This example makes the RV dash an office. This desk could be used even during travel but would be much easier with a laptop. This is a very compact area. I am not sure I could work here every day, but it would be great for occasional use.
7. Working Outside
Most of us full-time RVers live this way so that we can spend more time outdoors, so why shouldn’t we make the outdoors an office. Nature makes the perfect motivator. You can work and get your vitamin D at the same time.
This example uses a pop-up tent for shade and protection from insects. I love listening to the birds while I write. If you are easily distracted, make sure you choose a more secluded spot. Also, choose a comfortable chair. I have learned that comfort makes an impact on my ability to write,
8. Booth Mod
Sometimes RV and campers come with dining room tables, and sometimes they have an installed booth. This booth usually converts to a bed. Depending on your bedding needs, you could decide to transform your dining booth into a temporary or permanent office.
This camper dining booth has been temporarily modded to an office but can easily convert back and make a bed if needed. This solves the need for a workspace without compromising on sleeping options. If you know there will be occasions you will need this space for a bed, this is a good compromise.
This dining booth has been designed to be an office with plenty of file storage under each bench. This desk is a bit high so that you may need an adjustable chair. I must say placing hanging files in the bench drawers is pretty smart.
This booth was completely torn out and converted into an office. I love how the writing space pulls out and slides back into the cabinet and out of the way. This could be used for eating space also.
9. Dual Desk
If you have two people who need an office space and can work side by side, there is hope to combine areas. Finding the perfect place can be tricky, but it is doable with a bit of creativity. I would test out working in the same general space before committing to the idea. Some people need a private space to work. One person constantly on the phone and the other trying to write or read would not be suitable for my husband and me.
This RV converted the entire slide-out into an office and storage space for two people. Each person has their own space, and what a great view! These workstations do not appear to be small either.
10. Camper Van
Can you find space for an office in a van conversion? Yes, of course, you can. It may or may not be a designated space, but it is an excellent opportunity to get creative. You can work on the bed, dining table, kitchen counter, on the beach, or by a waterfall. The space and views are up to you.
This pull-out cutting board makes a great desk space. It is the perfect size to quickly convert from a dining room table to a desk. One advantage is that you will not be tempted to leave it cluttered or messy because this desk is put away.
This couple has found a way to work together in their van. Using the dining room table for dual workspace is a great way to accommodate those working hours and still keep dinner time special.
10. Floating desk
Using a floating shelf for an office can be very convenient. If you use and install it correctly, you could have a sturdy writing surface with hidden storage.
Check out this DIY floating shelf video. This is a genius setup using very little space.
11. 2 in one
So I play the keyboard, and I love this idea. It can store your keyboard, papers, tablets, or books inside and provide a workspace on top. It isn’t very wide, so it is definitely a space saver. I also love how they included a lip on the inside of the lid to hold the music.
This desk slides out to add a workspace above your bed, but it slides away and stores your laptop until you need it again. The door closes on the slide and has a lock for keeping it safe.
13. Freestyle Workspace
So in the beginning, I showed you a picture of my desk, and I use it to teach five days a week, but Sitting in an office chair for a long time can be hard on my back and hips. I use a laptop, so I alternate. Sometimes I work in my recliner, on my couch, outside, and have even been known to work while lounging in my bed. Working from home gives me freedom, and I take advantage of it!
This isn’t me, but it does reflect my current situation, change the black dog to a solid white three-pound Maltese. I love the ability to change positions for maximum comfort.
This blogger is working by the lake. Her office has a great view and weather. This picture reminded me of last week when I made our pontoon boat into my office for the day. I can’t wait to move my office to the beach.
14. Office Nook
Want a corner office? Any corner will do. You do not need a fancy setup, just find a corner and set yourself up. Your office should reflect you, your working style, and your comfort.
In this example, the RV owner has placed everything in like a puzzle, but it fits and includes a comfy desk chair. This workspace is small but cozy and has a view.
15. Versatility Office
Everyone who lives or works in an RV knows that versatility is a plus. It is a win-win if you can have a workspace that can be used for more than one purpose.
This surface can be one desk, two desks, a dining table, a game table, or disappear, leaving space for other activities. I think this option is fantastic. And this could be a complete DIY project for very little expense. I say that is a win-win-win.
These dual desks can be made into a dining table. They have a drawer for storage and can be made any size you need. This is perfect for RVs, campers, and even tiny houses. You can customize the size and height to fit your space.
Check out this DIY video to make this versatile desk a reality.
I love working from my RV. I love making my own hours and spending quality time with my granddaughter and loved ones. I love traveling and meeting new people and cultures. I appreciate the ability to spend time kayaking, boating, fishing, cooking on the bonfire, or just enjoying nature. Setting up my workspace is another adventure because I can work traditionally at my desk or wherever I want. It doesn’t matter where your office is or how big it is. What is important is that it functions for you and maintains your freedom.