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Home office costs: These additional costs can be expected in the home office message


Home office can be expensive

The social lockdown that is intended to contain the consequences of the corona pandemic means that many workers have to stay at home and work from there. For many people, this means more freedom and comfort. But working in the home office is also more stressful and in some cases rising costs for the employee. Accordingly, one should be prepared for higher additional costs and additional costs.

Additional electricity costs are limited

For example, hardware in the form of a laptop, printer and other equipment must be purchased. A suitable desk with an office chair is also essential for a long working day. In some cases, in order to set up the home office as professionally as possible, employees can face relatively high costs quickly.

However, the employer is legally obliged to fully set up each employee’s home office. This means that the employer must bear the costs for the computer / laptop and accessories as well as for the office furniture. In theory, all health and safety requirements in the home office must also be met. For example, it is mandatory to lay cables properly and to provide daylight in the study. In practice, however, this is not possible.

In addition to the acquisition costs for office supplies, higher ancillary costs must also be taken into account when working at home for a longer period. The amount of electricity costs depends on the type and number of devices used. The Verivox energy portal calculated the specific costs in this regard. Accordingly, the use of a laptop costs around 15 cents per working day. If a computer with an external monitor is used, this costs about 50 cents per working day. “The additional electricity costs from the home office are usually less than one euro per working day,” explains Valerian Vogel, energy expert at Verivox – even if the additional costs for kitchen appliances and the smartphone are included.

Transfer costs to employers

Since the employer is obliged to ensure an adequate job, he must also provide the necessary funds for the home office. As a rule, the employee should not have to make any advance payments at all. “If the employer does not provide any work equipment, the employee is generally entitled to reimbursement of the costs associated with setting up the workplace,” specialist lawyer Volker Görzel told RTL.

However, since in most cases it is complicated to determine the actual additional costs or to purchase equipment in advance, the employee can make his private equipment available and then invoice it at a flat rate. “I recommend my clients to agree on a monthly lump sum for expenses of EUR 50,” said Görzel. For this purpose, an agreement can be made with the employer, which is recorded in writing.

Regarding electricity costs, Verivox expert Vogel explains: “In most cases, employees are not reimbursed for these costs. However, small changes in everyday behavior can significantly reduce electricity costs overall.”

Henry Ely / editorship

Image sources: Devin_Pavel /

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