There are several ways to find an interior designer:
- Personal reference is always an excellent method. You may have admired an interior designer’s work at a friend’s home.
- Your local phone book. Be sure to ask for references.
Once you have a few names, call each design professional to set up an interview. Some interior designers charge for this; most do not. Some like to meet you at your home; others like to conduct interviews in their own offices. An interview is an opportunity for you to get to know the interior designer and for him or her to get a feel for your design project.
Ask to see the designer’s portfolio.
The following is a few of the most frequently asked questions:
How much will an interior designer’s services cost me?
Different designers have different methods of charging clients for services. Some of the most common methods include the following.
Flat fee: One fee is decided upon for the entire project. This fee structure requires a thorough and detailed understanding of the services to be rendered and the specific areas involved. The written contract should state that no additional services are to be added.
Hourly plus a percentage markup on the cost of purchases: This fee structure charges an hourly fee in addition to a cost-plus on purchases.
Many interior designers use a combination of the methods mentioned above. Do not be afraid to question the interior designer regarding exactly how he or she charges for services.
The interior designer will ask you about your budget and the type of investment you want to make. Furniture and good design are investments. Good-quality pieces will be with you for a very long time. Be prepared to give a ballpark figure. Even if you don’t know what furniture and design services cost today, you should still have some idea of what you are comfortable spending. Your designer can help you clarify exactly how far your money will go.