Whether you’re designing your new office space or sprucing up things in your house, hiring the right interior designer saves you a lot of time and gives you less headaches.
There are a lot of things to consider when you are designing your living/working space, namely your traffic flow, the size and ambience of the room, functionality, and optimizing room size, to say the least.
A great interior designer would know where to get good product samples and would have done their research, prevent some potentially messy mishaps.
Here are some of the essentials for getting, and working with, a great interior decorator.
Know what you want
Before you even begin the interior designer hunt, you should have very specific list of what you want your project to look like. Decide on what style you are going for, how many furniture you want to buy and if you have a specific theme or colour that you would like.
It is pointless to interview an interior designer without a vision of how your project would turn out to be. If you have no experience with it or are unsure about what you want, do some online research and take inspiration online or through browsing home living magazines. Not only do they inspire you, they often have resources on where to get products and good interior designers.
Prepare your budget
Decide how much cash you want to set aside to pay for interior design services. Then, you need to find out how your designer is paid. Some uses an hourly rate where as others charge a flat fee or per project.
There are also the services that are charged extra. Find out what services are included in the price given. Are they charging you extra for consultation and retainer?
Bare in mind that if the interior designer does the purchasing for you, you will be expected to pay 100 percent of the costs upfront. Many designers also require the payment of a retainer, an upfront fee for their consultation and extra workers if they may require one.
Ask for clarification on how they plan on spending your money. A good designer will give you a clear proposal on what they plan to do and will manoeuvre around your budget throughout the entire project.
Before you hire one, check their credibility. It helps if they have a list of references from past client. This will enable you to identify if they have a good relationship with their past clients.
In order to ensure a good end result, you would want a licensed and experienced interior designer in your corner that has had extensive training. You would also want someone who’s actually gathered a lot of hands-on experience in the field so you don’t end up with more mishaps then results.
You would want to know where they were trained at, the list of clients they’ve worked with and how much they would cost.
Once you are done with their backgrounds, have a look at their previous designs. Do they suit what you are looking for? It is easier to work with an interior designer who shares the same concept as you than someone who is on the other end of the spectrum.
You could even ask them if you could visit their past work-place. While you’re there, ask the past clients on their work ethics, how convenient they are with changes and how well they work with deadlines.
If you are decorating an office or a business hub, time is essential and you do not want to work with a designer that will require one month on top of the given time.
Time is money. As much as you need a great design for your home or office, you also need to be sure that it can be done during the time frame you’ve allocated.
Interview a few different designers and ask them about their schedules and when they’ll have time to focus on your project. If the designer you eventually choose has a hectic schedule and can only do your project a few hours at a time, you need to ask if it is worth it. Not only that, absence of an interior designer will also show in the end product.
Most of the time most interior designers have assistants to help with projects and keep their time schedule on target. In this case, find out exactly how much you’ll be working directly with the interior designer versus the assistants and how much they would cost.
How involved will you be in designing this project? Are you leaving 100 per cent of the decision to your interior designer or do they have to get your approvals for every changes they make?
As the project progress, some changes might need to be done to fit time and space. No matter how good an interior designer might be, you will have to decide whether they have your ultimate trust or you still want to have the final words.
To avoid confusion and tension, decide prior to the project how you are going to work together.