Tips for Hiring an Interior Designer

With demand continuing to grow for houses in Vancouver and the surrounding area, and the supply not keeping up, an increasing number of homeowners are choosing to renovate their current homes instead of moving. Oftentimes, they love the location but would prefer a more up-to-date look that can best be accomplished by hiring a professional interior designer.

Whether you live in Vancouver or anywhere else and hope to hire an interior designer, these tips can help you get the most bang for your buck.

Create a List of What You Want

Female Hands Framing Custom Kitchen Design Drawing and Photo Combination.

Before you start your hunt for the best interior designer, you need to know what you want. Create a very detailed, specific list, deciding on the style you want, a theme or color, the new furniture you hope to add, and so on. If you don’t have a vision in mind, do some online research, getting inspiration from various websites and saving your favorites – Pinterest is great for helping a designer understand your personal style. You can also begin browsing through magazines focused on home and lifestyles, tearing out the pages so you can show potential designers what you want.

Set a Budget

Set a Budget
You’ll almost always save money over the long run by hiring a good interior designer that will help you make the smartest choices that will last and won’t get dated. A professional designer will also have relationships with vendors, contractors and subcontractors, that make the process far easier and less expensive than what you could find on your own. They also know how to keep you within your budget, but you’ll have to set one first. Decide how much you can afford to pay for their services, and when comparing, be sure to find out exactly what’s included. Many require a retainer as well as an upfront fee for consultation and other workers if needed.

Check References and Portfolios

Check References and Portfolios
Develop a short list of potential interior designers by talking to neighbors, friends, co-workers, family and so on. Before you hire one, thoroughly check references from some of their most recent clients. It’s also important to be sure they are licensed and experienced. Once you’ve vetted the designers, take a look at their previous designs to determine if they suit what your particular needs are. It’s much easier to work with someone who shares similar concept ideas.

In-Person Meetings

Two business man shaking hands with his team in office
When meeting with each potential designer, as you’ll be working closely together, you’ll want to be sure they’re a good fit personality wise. They’ll be helping you to think outside the box, creating an environment that reflects your family’s personality as well as considering functionality, so you want someone that understands the way you think and how your family functions.

Ask lots of questions and make sure the designer is listening to you. If they tell you that you must do something a certain way, it’s time to look elsewhere. You should be able to speak freely and have someone that can really listen as you’re the one who will be living with the results.

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