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Best Home Office Desks

Updated August 2018
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BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers.
BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
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We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

  • 93 Models Considered
  • 32 Hours Researched
  • 2 Experts Interviewed
  • 174 Consumers Consulted
  • Zero products received from manufacturers.

    We purchase every product we review with our own funds — we never accept anything from product manufacturers.

    Why trust BestReviews?
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers.
    BestReviews spends thousands of hours researching, analyzing, and testing products to recommend the best picks for most consumers. We buy all products with our own funds, and we never accept free products from manufacturers.

    Shopping guide for best home office desks

    Last Updated August 2018

    Creating an effective home office starts with the right desk. A good desk fits the available space in your home and has the surface area you need to keep your equipment and supplies organized.

    But desks come in all shapes, sizes, and finishes. It can be hard to know where to begin your search. With the right tools and some well-researched suggestions, we can help you find a desk that meets your needs.

    We’ve put together this home office desk shopping guide to give you an idea of what’s available as well the top features you should consider. When you’re ready to shop, be sure to check out our five recommendations.

    You may want to consider an office suite or furniture set if you have a lot of equipment, files, and client information to keep organized. Your office will have a cohesive look if all the pieces are purchased together.

    Types of home office desks

    Before you begin shopping for a new home office desk, it helps to have an idea what you’ll be looking at. The market offers many different types of home office desks, including the following.

    Corner desk

    These space-saving desks can tuck nicely into a corner. They usually offer some extra storage space and a good amount of surface area.

    DID YOU KNOW?

    To assemble most desks, you’ll need a screwdriver and hammer. Some manufacturers do not recommend using power tools for assembly because they can drive screws too far into the wood.

    Executive desk

    These large, expansive desks are meant to be the focal point of the room.

    They have impressive surface area and storage space with enough room for files, office supplies, and a computer tower.

    Designs range from ornate and decorative to simple and streamlined.

    Executive desks come as standalone pieces or as part of a suite.

    Computer Desk

    The RTA L-Shape home office desk comes with a keyboard tray and detachable rolling CPU cart. The 67-inch L-shaped work area is ideal for people who operate multiple monitors at one time; up to four monitors can be used at once. The elevated center shelf on this desk is a perfect storage area for small accessories.

    Writing desk

    The open, simple work area of a writing desk allows it to perfectly complement minimalist décor. Writing desks may have one or two drawers, but many designs have none. This type of desk has one function, which is to provide you a place to write.

    Computer desk

    A computer desk has functionality at its base. There is more surface area to spread out monitors, keyboards, printers, and other office equipment. Some computer desks have drawers while others may only have a keyboard tray. Many come in an L-shaped configuration that fits nicely into a corner.

    EXPERT TIP

    A keyboard tray isn’t a necessity, but it can clear space on the desktop. Even if you only use a laptop, you might want to consider a desk with a keyboard tray in case you ever want to use a wireless keyboard.


    Credenza desk

    Credenza desks are popular because they are usually beautiful yet multifunctional. This type of desk combines a work desk with the display area of a credenza. Credenza desks are big and utilize vertical space.

    Roll-top desk

    Roll-top desks have lots of storage space and cubbies for stashing office supplies and keeping papers sorted. If you’re using a computer, however, a roll-top desk works best with a laptop. That’s because the roll-top leaves little space for a monitor, and there is not enough room for a computer tower underneath it.

    DID YOU KNOW?

    Desks come in large boxes. Many sellers offer delivery free of charge. Some also offer assembly for a small fee.

    Secretary desk

    Elegant but smaller than roll-top desks, secretary desks are more ornate, can be closed, and offer a little extra storage space. They work with a laptop but don’t have adequate space for a computer tower or monitor.

    Standing desk

    Standing desks are similar in design to writing desks, except they are tall enough that you can stand while you work. Some standing desks offer a drawer for storage space.

    Some high-end office desks come with felt-lined drawers with drawer organizers to keep office supplies separated. If a top-of-the-line executive desk is out of your price range, drawer organizers could also be purchased separately.

    Choosing a desktop material

    The desktop is your work surface, so it’s important that you like the material with which it’s made. The material needs to be durable enough to withstand daily use.

    Popular desktop materials include the following.

    Glass

    A glass desktop exudes a modern look and makes the desk appear lighter in weight. It usually sits atop wood or metal legs. Glass desktops are easy to clean, and many are removable for deep cleaning.

    DID YOU KNOW?

    A credenza desk or a desk with a hutch makes use of vertical space. This extra storage allows you to keep books, reference materials, and office supplies organized.

    Wood

    Warm and inviting, it’s hard to beat the classic look of a wood desktop. And with wood, you get a lot of color and finish options.

    For example, if you’re trying to blend your home office furniture with another area of your home, it’s fairly easy to find a type of wood that looks good with what you already have.

    Wood is a durable desktop material, though softer woods may show scratches, dents, and marks faster than harder woods.

    EXPERT TIP

    Most desks should be assembled in the room where they will reside. Be sure you have all the tools necessary to put the desk together before you begin assembly.


    Laminate

    Laminate desktops can look somewhat like wood, but they also look a bit like plastic. However, a laminate desktop is usually a durable desktop, and you don’t have to worry about stains, scratches, or dents.

    Metal

    Metal desktops are built to last. This material resists scrapes and stains, but it may be prone to dents. It’s easy to keep a metal desktop clean. You’ll often see a metal desktop paired with a nice-looking wood or metal frame.

    DID YOU KNOW?

    Desks made of all wood or all metal have the best construction and durability. Particleboard, MDF, and other less-durable materials may not hold up over time.

    Size, surface area, and desk purpose

    Desktop material is important, but it’s not the only thing to consider when shopping for a new home office desk. Desks come in all sizes, and of course people use them for all sorts of purposes. The space you have available and how you plan to use the desk helps determine the type and size of desk you’ll need.

    • If you need a lot of surface area but want something that doesn’t look like it takes up the whole room, a computer desk with a glass top might be the right fit for you.

    • If you’re running a home-based business, you’ll likely need a desk that accommodate a filing cabinet, an area for your printer and other devices, and storage space for your office supplies.

    • If your office is only used as an office, the desk may be the main feature. In that case, a large desk makes sense as the focal point of the room. If you have a small corner or maybe a wall in the kitchen, a corner or credenza desk would work better. Measure the length, height, and depth of the available space to be sure you get a desk of the right size.

    • Regardless of why you need the desk, you should assess what you want to store in it before buying it. Some people might want to be able to hide a computer tower in a cabinet. Others may care more about tucking away a laptop than securing a large computer monitor.

    FOR YOUR SAFETY

    Be sure to safely attach any hutches to the desktop and wall for greater stability.

    Home office desk prices

    Inexpensive home office desks

    For under $300, you’ll find basic writing, computer, and standing desks with laminate tops.

    Desks in this price range are small and offer little extra storage. Most are basically a table with one drawer and/or a shelf.

    Storage Galore

    The Bush Cabot L-Desk offers storage options galore. Highlights include a file cabinet drawer to accommodate legal and letter-sized files, six cube-shaped bookshelves, and a hutch with extra cubby storage. Stylish fluted glass doors adorn two of the desk's cabinet drawers. This model uses both closed and open storage for a modern, functional look.

    Mid-priced home office desks

    In the $300 to $700 range are larger computer desks, many with an L-shape design that provides more storage.

    Some come as part of a suite that may include a matching hutch, file drawer, or bookcase.

    There are a few inexpensive executive, secretary, and roll-top desks at the top of this price range.

    DID YOU KNOW?

    Desks with soft-close drawer slides prevent drawers from being slammed. They automatically slow down the drawer before it closes completely.

    Expensive home office desks

    For $700 to $1,200, you’ll find solid wood and metal computer desks, executive desks, credenza desks, and roll-top desks. These desks offer extensive surface area and lots of storage space for office equipment and supplies. Some may come as part of a suite.

    Premium home office desks

    Desks that cost greater than $1,200 are typically ornate executive desks, some of which are in L-shaped configurations that come as part of an office suite. These large desks may have felt-lined drawers and/or intricate cosmetic designs. Prices for these desks can go well above $5,000.

    Many computer desks come with a shelf designed to hold a computer tower. Some desks hide the tower with a door and have a hole through the desktop through which cords can pass. This helps maintain a sleek, clutter-free exterior.

    FAQ

    Q. I don’t have much space for a home office; just a corner of my kitchen. I use a laptop and don’t need much storage space. What are some good desk options for me?

    A. A small writing desk would fit nicely in the corner. Writing desks have a minimal appearance and fit well into modern design. You could also use a standing desk if you want to be able to come and go as you please. If you’d like a little storage space, a small computer desk with several drawers could also work.

    Q. How much assembly do most desks require?

    A. Most desks arrive in one or two large, flat boxes and include all hardware. You’ll have to put on the sides and top and assemble the drawers. In most cases, you’ll have to use your own tools.

    The larger the desk, the longer assembly will take. A simple writing desk may take you as little as one hour while a large corner desk with a hutch may take four or more hours.

    Q. I’ve seen some desks that have a wood-like appearance but aren’t actually made of wood. How durable are these desks?

    A. Most desks that have a wood-like appearance but are not actually wood are made of an engineered wood product called medium-density fiberboard, or MDF. Not all MDF is of the same quality. High-grade MDF withstands temperature changes and high moisture levels better than solid wood. MDF of this quality rivals solid wood for durability, though you won’t get the beauty of the wood grain.

    Low-grade MDF is sometimes used to make cheap desks. This material tends to warp and separate into layers if exposed to excessive moisture.

    The team that worked on this review
    • Bob
      Bob
      Writer
    • Devangana
      Devangana
      Web Producer
    • Eliza
      Eliza
      Production Manager
    • Melissa
      Melissa
      Senior Editor
    • Stacey
      Stacey
      Writer

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