Looking for and setting up a space to practice counselling or psychology is an exciting time.
You may already have a vision and set ideas of how you would like your practice to look and feel.
Here are some tips for setting up a counselling room –
Rent a Counselling Room
If you are lucky enough you can find dedicated counselling rooms that are fully furnished and ready to go. All you need to do is bring your notebook and start practicing. This is an ideal option if you can find an available therapy space.
Whatever the cost of renting is, try to include this in your fee, so you are able to help your clients from a dedicated and therapeutic counselling environment.
Try Googling “counselling rooms for rent” in your location and start shopping around to see if anything is available and cost effective.
Other options may include your local health or GP clinic. Some therapists like to work together in groups to reduce the financial burden of rent.
Location of Counselling Rooms
Location is really important. You want your counselling practice to be near residential areas to make it easy for your clients to come and see you.
You also want your location to be easily accessible i.e., near popular bus stops or train stations.
The price you charge reflects which suburb you are practicing from. The more affluent the suburb, the more you may consider charging so you can cover your rent and other business expenses.
Another thing to consider is parking, when you are practicing near the city it might be difficult to find parking. So when you find a location with parking available it might be worth more.
Accessible spaces are a must when it comes to setting up a counselling room.
Whether you are renting a counselling room that is already set up, leasing a commercial space or setting up a room in your home, you will need to consider access requirements for people who have a disability.
Is there adequate parking available? What is the width of the door frames, corridor spaces and turning space for wheel chair access? Are there any stairs to access the building?
When completing an initial booking, you may like to ask the client “do you have any access requirements?” This simple question will help you to prepare the environment if needed and make the client’s experience a whole lot easier where you can both focus on the therapy.
If you are able to choose the colour layout of your office go for a soothing, light, or neutral colour palette.
Colour is a personal choice. Research the psychology behind different colours.
Ensure that you do not choose anything that is too extreme or distracting for a client. Dedicated counselling and psychology rooms usually have thought about this already, so you don’t have to worry about it.
Ensure the seating area of your therapy room is non-confrontational and encourages dialogue. This means having adequate spacing between yourself and your clients, so you don’t intrude on their personal space.
Ensure your chairs are comfortable enough to sit on for the duration of the session and back to back sessions for yourself.
Therapists have different preferences when it comes to lighting.
Some prefer soft, warmer lamp light and others prefer a bright lit overhead light. Our preference is a softer style light.
Be sure that the lighting feels appropriate for therapy and creates a comfortable therapeutic environment for the client and yourself.
To ensure the privacy of your clients try to find a room that has the entrance and exit as discrete as possible.
Ensure your room has adequate sound proofing so people outside can’t hear the conversation.
Try putting a ‘session in progress’ sign on the door so people don’t walk in and disturb the session.
Décor and Necessities
When it comes to counselling rooms less is more. Avoid clutter.
Try adding a small table with the necessities such as a small clock, a box of tissues, and water that are all within reach of your clients.
When it comes to art, neutral is best. Scenes, art or photography that is serene and calm rather than busy may work better. Art can also be used as a talking point or tool in your therapy.
Fresh flowers and plants are beautiful, however be aware that some clients will have allergies and this may create an unwanted distraction for you both during a counselling session. There are many attractive artificial plants on the market these days and they will stay alive when you take that much earned holiday.
Consider asking for feedback from your clients. This will help you to create the ideal counselling room for your clients over time.
Are you looking for a counselling or psychology room to rent?
Therapy Enterprise provides counselling spaces for therapists so that they are able to get on with delivery services to their clients. Contact us today to find out about room availability.