The best laptops for working from home

Updated on December 13, 2023

Updated Dec 13, 2023

Working from home offers many advantages, but it can be stressful if you don’t have the right equipment at your disposal. Fortunately, you can make remote work much easier on yourself by finding the right laptop for your professional needs. When choosing a laptop for remote work, you’ll need to consider factors like portability and processing power. It’s best to have something that isn’t too heavy to lug around, and also something powerful enough to keep up with your heavy workflow year after year. Faster processors will enable your laptop to stay snappy even as the web becomes more advanced with time. So keep in mind that although some of these models we suggest may cost over $500, they should serve you well without any hiccups for the next few years.

Overall best laptop for working from home is: MacBook Air

In many ways, the MacBook Air is the workhorse of portable laptops. It’s a sleek computer that’s highly regarded for its long-term reliability, making it a clear choice for the top of this list.

Apple claims it has 12 hours of battery life, so even if you need to get some work done in a place that doesn’t have an outlet, you can be sure your MacBook Air will get the job done for quite a while; unless you’re doing some energy-guzzling tasks such as video or photo editing.

And let’s of course not forget about the fact that it’s light and super slim, so you can easily fit it in a backpack and bring your work to parks, cafes, or any other places where you feel comfortable. 

While the cost of Apple products can be a drawback for some consumers, their performance and reliability are well-known. Additionally, opting for a refurbished MacBook Air can allow you to save money while enjoying the long-term reliability that Apple computers are known for. 

If your computing needs are more advanced, you may want to consider choosing a refurbished MacBook Pro. The MacBook Pro is more expensive and cumbersome to transport, than the MacBook Air but offers greater processing power, larger displays, and more ports.

Runner-up best laptop for working from home: Microsoft Surface

Like the MacBook, the Microsoft Surface is highly portable and features a sleek yet comfortable design. Microsoft Surface is also ideal for long stretches of work, as newer models can exceed 13 hours of battery life, though this amount may vary depending on the apps you run.   

All variants of the Surface have a touch screen, and most have detachable keyboards and stylus accessories. So if you’re a designer or ever find yourself using a stylus, the Microsoft Surface series of laptops/hybrid tablets may be the right option for you.   

The Surface series includes a range of different processors and variants, and it’s critical to research the features and capabilities of each when deciding on the best laptop for your remote work needs.

Best budget laptop for working from home: Google Chromebook

If you want something cheaper than a refurbished MacBook Air or Microsoft Surface for working remotely, then consider getting a refurbished Chromebook. Chromebooks come in many different shapes and sizes, and you can find an older model for around $100. 

Even though they’re limited to Chrome OS apps only, a Chromebook can be a great choice if you do all your work on an internet browser. Chromebooks aren't the most powerful computers, but once again, if you're spending most of your time just using your browser, this may be a viable option for you. 

You can also expect a used Chromebook to be much easier to use than a Windows or Mac, so that’s another plus if you’re not super techy. But please, don’t think these computers are not to be taken seriously. You can get a lot of work done on a Chromebook. They can also be a great choice for kids due to their simplicity.

Best utilitarian laptop for working from home: Lenovo ThinkPad 

Lenovo ThinkPad laptops are some of the most robust computers out there, and most also have impressive specs. If you get a model like the X1 Carbon, Lenovo states you can get up to 15(!) hours of battery life, not to mention a top-of-the-line processor and nearly military-grade build quality. 

While they don’t get as much publicity as MacBooks, ThinkPads are in a league of their own when it comes to business laptops, offering a high level of reliability for their cost. Additionally, buying a refurbished ThinkPad can help you maximize the value of your investment by saving even more money on a product that’s already built to last.

Still couldn’t find the best work-from-home laptop for you?

If you're still unsure about these laptop recommendations, try checking out 4K laptop options that are sure to give you a high-quality screen experience! We hope this list was useful in helping you choose your next laptop for remote work. 

If you're interested in more of our best deals and recommendations, check out our best deals page. Don't forget, we also have student discounts for all those who have their noses buried inside textbooks. 

Miguel G.

Written by Miguel G.Sr. Tech Copywriter (US)

Miguel is always looking for new ways to provide unique perspective on popular tech and has taken his writing to the refurbished industry to promote sustainability. Outside of creating content, you might find him travelling the globe, coaching a fitness class, or cheering on his favorite sports teams (Go Dolphins!)

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