Hybrid Home/Work Arrangement Trend Calls For A Cool Home Office

Architecture, Design, Leslieville/Riverside, Real Estate


During the pandemic, out of necessity, we quickly pivoted to work-from-home arrangements, some of which were functional – but not necessarily comfortable, or even practical in the long term (how many of you set up shop at the dining table, with your partner holding Zoom meetings at the other end? Show of hands?).

Years later, although we have returned to life as normal, work-from-home is here to stay; employees and employers alike have learned that it is possible – and productive – to work outside of a corporate office environment.

That means that our spaces must be conducive to working from home, regardless of whether we’re on full-time or hybrid schedules. Because of this, having dedicated home office space is now high on the list for dwell hunters, so including this feature as a dedicated zone (or demonstrating what space is adaptable) is something to show Buyers – because it’s something they are willing to pay a premium for.




Work From Home: The Stats

While many companies have directed employees back to work, at least part-time, lots of the workforce are still either semi or fully remote.

I wrote about the beginnings of the trendline post-pandemic in 2022 in this post,  BLeisure, WFH, & An IKEA Hack, which also explored the emergence of BLeisure, where remote employees can truly embrace work/life balance by working remotely in a vacation destination of their choice. Have WI-FI, will travel!

As to where we are at today, recent data from Statistics Canada shows that, although down from highs during the lockdowns of 2020, 20 percent of the workforce is still working from home. And not surprisingly, the ability to telework varies across industries, and further – regionally.

The data also shows that, based on their experience at home during the pandemic, workers largely feel that they can be as productive at home as in a traditional office setting, but that today, worker desires for telework are quite diverse.

Notably, while full-time remote work has dropped, hybrid work arrangements have consistently been trending upwards since 2022.

Another Stats Can report – referred to in the Global News article “These Are The Canadians Most Likely To Have A Hybrid Work Arrangement: StatCan“, shows that parents of young children comprise the largest section of the workforce using a hybrid work arrangement, because of the flexibility with scheduling and how the work arrangement figures into work/life balance.

Hybrid working strikes a welcome balance between the benefits of telework, and still actively meeting in person, which helps to foster work culture and more.

This report from Cisco – “No Longer Just A ‘Perk’: Cisco Survey Finds Canadians Now Expect Flexible, Hybrid Work” – shows just how significant hybrid work opportunity has become, with 81 percent of respondents saying having flexible work policies, including hybrid work, affect their chances of staying with a company.

Flexibility to telework has risen to the second priority for workers when choosing a job, just behind salary.

What this says is that not only is hybrid work here to stay, but it is also an expectation for workers, as opposed to a perk or benefit.




Choosing A Home That Supports WFH

One thing that the pandemic did regarding our shelter is to consider how our space plan can accommodate a range of options for different purposes, such as a home office.

The demand for 2-bedroom residences or larger ones boomed during the pandemic (as did the Demand For ‘Forever Homes’ In Toronto’s Downtown Family Neighbourhoods). That’s because an extra bedroom number can easily be a flexi-space that accommodates a home office, guest room, yoga room, you name it – with some smart design strategy. Here are some design tips in this post How To Create A Productive ‘Work-From-Home’ Office Space During The Pandemic – but are still relevant today. Functionality never goes out of style!

Incidentally, I’ve never liked a room with confusing identities. As in, is that room a Home Office or a Guest Room? I resolved that by constructing a built-in bed to define my flex-space. Check out –> I Love A Built-In Bed!



A Home Office & The CRA

Did you know that CRA has changed tax rules for 2023 filings for remote work? For example, you are required to have a space dedicated to work at home (although the space can be shared, such as in a flex room, or even at the kitchen table, if that is your dedicated area. But working at the kitchen table is so 2020).

The amount of office expenses you are allowed to deduct is proportional to the square footage of your home being used for a home office space. So, doesn’t it make sense to have an additional bedroom/flex room that could be a home office- for comfort, style, and budget?

This article from the Financial Post provides a good, easy-to-read summary of tax changes for 2023 regarding home office work: “New CRA Rules Around Working From Home Make It Harder To Claim Expenses“.




Our new listing at 88 Colgate Avenue – with direct access from the street – offers just such a layout, with a second bedroom perfectly suited to a home office – including French Doors to the exclusive-use terrace! Also, we find lofts particularly conducive to Working From Home; is it something about the high ceilings, that makes home offices feel more tolerable? Sometimes a little nook in your dining room isn’t enough!

So check out this voluminous ground-level suite in Toronto’s east end! We call it: So Sweet Ya Gotta Brush Yer Teeth – On Colgate Avenue In Leslieville – listed for $1,075,000, with offers welcomed anytime!



If you have questions or want to book a private viewing, contact James Ormston at james@urbaneer.com



If you enjoyed this post, you may enjoy these other Urbaneer.com articles:

How COVID-19 Will Likely Change How We Design Our Homes 

Dear Urbaneer: What Is Biophilia And How Can I Use It In Home Design?

Dear Urbaneer: What Architectural Design Features Elevate The Value Of Toronto Real Estate?

About Universal Design: Applications For Aging In Place & Toronto Real Estate

Dear Urbaneer: How Do We Establish Our Interior Design Style?

The Need And Demand For Live/Work Properties In Toronto

Dear Urbaneer: What Are Your ‘Tried & True’ Tips For Competing In A Bidding War?



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Thanks for reading!


-The Urbaneer Team

Steven Fudge, Sales Representative
& The Innovative Urbaneer Team
Bosley Real Estate Ltd., Brokerage – (416) 322-800


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