Things You Need to Know When Hiring an Interior Designer

Everyone deserves to love the home they live in. Sadly, a lot of people are unhappy with the space they have created for themselves, and often are not sure why. This is where an Interior Designer plays a valuable role, as liaison between you and your home.

After you have made the decision to hire a Designer, finding the right one may seem like a daunting task. Start by asking asking your friends or relatives if they have someone to recommend. If you have seen a room or home with a design that you really liked, find out who the designer was. Searching online is also a good place to start. Most designers have a web site where you can instantly see their previous work and get a feel for how they design. The local ASID chapter can help facilitate this. Start out with 2 or 3 choices and schedule consultations. This is a good time to view the portfolios and most importantly, see if it “feels” like a good fit. By this I mean, use your intuition. You could potentially be working with this person for an extended period of time, while it’s not necessary that you become friends, you still want to be heard when it comes to expressing your thoughts and desires for creating a better space.

Some questions to ask the Designer during this process are:
o Describe your design style.
o Are you open to my ideas and wishes during the creative process?
o What aspect of design is of most importance to you (i.e. lighting, color scheme etc.)
o How do you structure your fee?
o Do you have a list of previous clients that I can talk to?
o Most Designers won’t give away too many ideas during this part of the process, but it wouldn’t hurt to ask for an impromptu idea or two to see if you’re on the same page.
o Your instincts can play a big role at this stage, so be sure to listen to them!

When you have made your decision, you should receive a contract with the scope of work, timeline and fees involved. Be sure to read it thoroughly and don’t be afraid to ask questions if there is something you don’t quite understand. This is the time to work out any concerns and to ask questions. If the Designer is honest and has integrity, she/he will be very forthcoming with her/his answers.

Just remember that this should be a fun process! With the right prep work beforehand, you and your Interior Designer can have a productive and creative relationship.