10 things to ask your interior designer

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When it comes to choosing an interior designer, the process is as meticulous as looking for a lifetime partner who shares the same interests and ideas. Before putting your faith in the creativity of these designers, there are several questions to keep in mind and ask in order to achieve the perfect match between creativity and imagination in designing any interior.

Question # 1: HOW MUCH IS YOUR BUDGET?

The first thing to consider is the budget. How much money do you have allocated for the designer’s fee and the acquisition of pieces to complete the interior? It’s better to start off practical and be transparent about how much you are willing to spend on the designer.

Furthermore, this money will be used to determine the quality of furniture that will be used to complete the look. Starter furniture can be cheap and may opted to be eventually replaced with the ideal piece that suits the overall room theme while possessing durability.


Throughout the designing process, the allotted budget can also be increased to ensure the acquisition of the right pieces to achieve that “dream home.”

Question # 2: HOW MUCH IS THE DESIGNER’S FEE?

Always ask the cost of the designer’s efforts before continuing; confirm if the fee coincides with your allotted budget or if it would break the bank throughout the designing process. Meanwhile, make sure that you also get what you paid for. If the designer charges less than what you were expecting, do a background check before taking the plunge; but if the fee is more than what was in mind, make sure that the service will be worth every centavo.

Question # 3: “ARE YOUR RATES HOURLY OR PER ROOM”

Once you’ve discovered how much they’re asking, follow-up that information with how they charge for their services: is it by the hour or per room in the house? Charging by the hour will quickly accumulate. It is better to keep in mind that total cost should largely depend on the scope of work that will be done.

Question # 4: “CAN YOU PROVIDE A LIST OF REFERENCES?”

Find out as much as you can about the designer you are about to hire. Ask for a list of references; ask their former clients, current clients, their employees and even their suppliers about their work ethics and how they handle deadlines and pressure; most importantly, how they deal and communicate with the homeowner.

Question # 5: DO YOU HAVE THE SAME STYLE STRENGTH/INTEREST?

Identify which particular style each designer specializes in and see if it matches your desired style for your home. Check their portfolio, their social media accounts or, better yet, ask them what their strengths and weaknesses are when it comes to design styles.

Question # 6: WILL YOU AVAIL THE DESIGNER’S FULL-SERVICE?

When it comes to the actual designing process, would you opt for the designer’s full-service, meaning that the hired designer will accompany you throughout the entire process of revamping your abode. Make sure to specify the services you need to be done. However, if the list of the full-service goes beyond the scope, search for a more practical process of designing; one way is through looking into virtual or online interior designing.

Question # 7: WHAT’S THE TIMELINE?

Know your timeline when it comes to the designing process because it helps with the planning of the overall outcome. When having your home carefully and creatively planned, discuss with the designer whether they can accommodate the timeline you can provide. If you have a specific deadline or if you’re taking your sweet time to fulfill your ideal home, be transparent and practical about it. This will also help in eliminating or selecting the possible furniture suppliers who can provide on-hand items or custom-made ones.

Question # 8: HOW CAN WE COMMUNICATE?

Communication is important to make things work and especially to coordinate smoothly. Make sure that you won’t have any trouble contacting the home designer when the need arises. Secure a two-way communication and exhaust every platform for communication that the both of you can access: texts, calls, e-mails, etc.

Question # 9: DOES THE DESIGNER OFFER POST-INSTALLATION SUPPORT?

After the final design has been delivered to your home, there are instances when you’ll need assistance to finalize and perfect your ideal house. Ask the hired [or to be hired]designer whether they offer consultations to solve your designing problems.

Question # 10: WHEN ARE MY FEES DUE?

Lastly, before entering an agreement, sign an agreement between you, the homeowner, and the interior designer. Aside from making a contract that legalizes your business together, it also solidifies or schedules when fees are due to ensure there is no delay in the project. Some designers charge half up front and then ask for the remaining balance once the work is done; while others set up a payment schedule.

PATRICIA TACULAO

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