Whether you’ve decided to hire a designer to advise you on your design project or not, here are four important things to know about you project before you get started.
Know Your Scope
You might be purchasing your first home and are in need of all new furniture, or perhaps you’re remodeling your kitchen or just want to update one room. Whatever the case may be, knowing exactly what you want to work on, as well as knowing which rooms are the priority, is the place to start.
I’m addition to knowing what parts of the house are getting an upgrade, make a list of what, if any, existing pieces of furniture you’d like to keep. Always keep in mind that quality pieces can be painted or reupholstered and given a whole new life.
Set a Realistic Budget
This might be the most important step in planning your home upgrade or remodel. Once you have a good idea of what you’ll need to purchase and how large your project will be, then you can put together a realistic number or range for the total cost of your project. This might also include collecting quotes from contractors, electricians, and plumbers if you’re looking at a remodel. If you hire a designer their fees should also be included in this preliminary budget just as you’ll have to account for labor costs from your contractor. A good place to start for design fees would be between 10-30% of your total cost of your project.
If you’re overwhelmed by the idea of knowing what it will cost to furnishing every room in your house, don’t worry. Keep a lookout for my blood post and newsletter next month for a complete budget guide broken down by room!
Know Your Timeline
I’m sure most people are aware by now of how Covid has affected the construction and design industries by now, whether it’s been through shipping delays or supply shortages, projects are taking longer than ever to complete. Please go into your project with this fact in mind and know that so many of these delays are completely out of the control of any professional you might hire. Know that we’ll do all we can to meet deadlines but it’s best to go into a project with flexible dates in mind as things are always changing. If your project includes construction, one rule of thumb is to double whatever timeline estimates you might receive as something is always inevitably delayed.
All that being said, this area along with budget are where hiring an expert really pays off. If something is delayed or goes out of stock, we know where to go for replacements and where to shop for items with the shortest lead times while staying within your budget. Saving my clients time and headaches if one of my greatest bragging rights as a designer.
Collect Some Inspiration
Every designer, whether edesign or full service, will ask that you have some inspiration photos at the ready for each room you’re planning on designing. Start a Pinterest board for each room and collect a few photos for each board that get you excited about your space. This will go a long way in narrowing down the look you’re trying to achieve and where to shop for that look based on your budget.
Armed with your project scope, a realistic budget and timeframe, as well as an idea of what you want your space to look like, you can now confidently go to your designer to iron out the rest of the details for your project. As well as the knowledge that you’ve saved yourself and your designer lots of time and hassle with these important first steps already taken care of because one very important factor in deciding on which designer to work with as well as what kind of design services you need (full service, edesign – aka virtual design, or some combination of each) is knowing your budget. Some designers might even reject your project if your budget doesn’t meet their minimum requirements. Finding the right designer is like dating and it’s important you and your designer work well together, not to mention you’re able to trust your designer as the expert pro they are.
But don’t fret! There are plenty of designers out there and absolutely no reason why anyone should feel like they can’t afford the expert guidance they need. Remember to be flexible and keep an open mind. There are so many different ways to achieve that look you’re dreaming of. If you’re a DIYer or simply comfortable with ordering product yourself and handling delivery, you might be the perfect match for an edesigner like me! Or maybe you need hybrid services, meaning some blend of edesign for a few rooms and full service for your kitchen remodel.
Whatever your needs may be, there is a designer out there who will expertly guide you in creating the home of your dreams!