Before you start working with an Interior Designer, there are some very important questions to ask yourself. While the designer is there to make your dreams come true, they cannot read your mind. Like any relationship, open and clear communication is crucial for a successful result.
Through my 20+ years of experience as an Interior Designer, I’ve discovered three key questions to ask every client before starting a project. Asking these questions at the start of a home design project has helped me make my client’s dreams a reality.
What is your budget?
The first question I ask clients is their budget. Communication with the financial decision makers from the beginning is crucial. A sofa can cost anywhere from $700 to $17,000+. If a client has a budget of $20,000 and they want a $5,000 sofa, that takes 1/4 of the budget. Once we know the amount that you’re willing to invest in your project, we can then help you plan for all of the project goals while helping to prevent costly mistakes from occurring.
What is the finished room to look like?
This is where my clients get to dream! I ask them what they want their home to say about them – calm, happy, inviting, casual, elegant? I encourage them to use Houzz.com, Pinterest, magazines and photos they have taken of inspirational interiors to help get started. Once I have these images from the client, we can then begin the selection process for creating their dream space.
Is there an event or deadline you’re trying to meet?
Most clients have an expectation in their minds of how long a project will take or a goal of when they want it to be complete. It helps to know their expectations up front, provide them with a detailed timeline and agree together on deadlines.
For an interior design project, the planning phase can take up to 3 months and for a remodel project, the planning phase can take up to 6 months. Furnishings may take anywhere from 2-12 weeks and the construction portion of the remodel project can last 3-12 months, depending on the scope of the project.