Before hiring anyone to do work for you, you should be familiar with them and how they operate. You should find out the cost of services, be familiar with the type of work they do, and their timeline. In return, you should be honest about your goals, budget, and timeline. Hiring a designer is the same.
Every designer works differently. Some designers will only create floor plans and mood boards, and then give you directions to implement their design. Some designers will be there from the first consultation through the final installation. When you hire an interior designer, you should know what type of services they offer and how much you will pay for those services. If you want them to guide you through every step of your decorating or remodeling journey, expect to pay accordingly.
But couldn’t I do it on my own?
That’s a tricky question. Yes, of course. You can accomplish just about anything on your own. The real question is, will you save money doing it on your own, or will it cost you more in the long run? If you have natural talent in choosing colors and pairing patterns, then you can probably handle redecorating your living room, bedroom, etc. If you have ever laid a floor, changed a faucet, replaced a light fixture, or similar; you are a cut above the average Joe. You can probably handle a small to medium remodeling project. I specialize in Kitchen & Bath design, which requires a greater than average knowledge of construction, design, and knowing how your home’s systems operate. You could do it on your own, but I believe that hiring someone to help you with your project will save you time, money, and regrets in the long run.
I have already invested in the tools for the job.
Have you ever downloaded a design program or played around with a room planner online? If the answer is yes, you are likely a go-getter. But learning or buying a program just to complete one project really isn’t going to save you much money in the long run. It takes time to learn a new tool (or even to experiment with one), and we all know that time = money. I use 2020 design to create renderings for the projects I’m working on. 2020 is one of the best programs for kitchen & bath design, and is used by industry professionals worldwide. It’s not cheap, but I consider it a worthy investment for my business.
I believe strongly that hiring a professional isn’t always the right answer. I have heard stories of people who have hired a contractor and gave them a massive deposit, and just to have the contractor never be heard from again. Horror stories are out there in any field. Before you hire anyone, you should interview them. I treat my first consultation as an interview. I know that I am being measured, but I am also deciding if I want to take the job. Not ever person is a good fit. If we’re going to be spending a lot of time together, I think we should both feel comfortable about it.
If you have any questions or additional feedback, I’d love to hear your thoughts! Have you ever worked with a professional designer before? What was your experience?