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interior design plan

Want to hire an interior designer? Make sure to discuss these 5 things before signing on the dotted line!

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Having written about interior decoration and home decor for about 2 years now, I’m starting to get what all the hype is about.

I used to feel like interior design wasn’t really important; if you have a couch to sit on and a bed to sleep in and a table to eat at, I was happy. It didn’t matter much to me if the colors and patterns matched or if the room used space harmoniously.

But now, I see how living in pleasant surroundings that suit your personality and your tastes can bring a lot of nice benefits, most important of which being feeling comfortable and at home, at home.

And interior designers are the pros at making homes feel like homes. Most interior designers get a degree to practice their profession. They’re also creative, original, curious and excellent at translating ideas and emotions into visual concepts.

If you’ve decided to hire an interior designer for a decoration or renovation project, you’re in for a treat! But before you plunge head first into it, make sure you discuss these items with your professional.

1. Budget

Of course, budget’s the first thing that comes to mind with a home decor or renovation project! Unless you’re a multi-millionaire, money is usually the biggest factor in choosing what you can and can’t do with your home decor.

A professional designer will be able to estimate how much a project should cost and give you a realistic budget. Don’t like the number of 0s on the final line? Talk to your designer about ways to save money or reduce the budget.

2. Tastes

You’re hiring an interior decorator to help you make a home you will love. So why would you not discuss your tastes with them? It seems like an obvious thing to discuss, but you’d be surprised how some people are reluctant to share what they like, just in case they somehow undercut their designer’s creativity.

But remember: your designer is there to help YOU, not themselves. If you don’t tell them what you like, you might end up with a decor you hate.

And in the case you don’t really know where your interior designs tastes lie, a professional interior designer will be able to figure it out by asking you some questions and making you look at different styles.

3. Distastes

Telling your designer what you like doesn’t necessarily mean they’ll know what you don’t like. You need to be able to say “no” when they suggest something that you downright hate.

I know, I know, you’re thinking, “but they’re the professional, they know better!”. But still, I can’t imagine you’d want to live every day around something you never liked in the first place, whether it’s a color, a piece of furniture or an accessory.

Say “no” when you should. You’re paying for everything, so there’s no reason you should pay for something you’ll always hate.

4. Deadlines

Interior decorators are just like everyone else: they’re busy people. You should discuss a realistic deadline with your designer. Keep in mind things like renovations or special events you need your decor for, and plan plenty of time to get the interior design for.

Also remember that you’re probably not that person’s only client; ask for a too tight deadline and you might end up with no decorator at all–or a much bigger bill.

5. Recycling and reusing

If you’re interested in reusing and recycling old elements of your house, you should let your designer know. They can often be a bit quick to buy new things, but if they know in advance about your desire to reduce the purchasing of brand-new decor elements, they’ll be more open to integrating your ideas. Take them antiquing instead of shopping!

Of course, if you have specific sustainability and green requirements for your decor, they should know that too.

It’s a business deal

Always remember that your interior designer is a business person, with his or her own goals. Although they provide you with a personal, intimate service, it doesn’t mean that they see you as their best friend. So treating the relationship as a business rather than personal one will save you lots of anxiety and possible disappointment down the road.

Have you used the services of an interior decorator before? What tips do you have about building a mutually satisfying relationship? Let us know in the comments!

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Anabelle Bernard Fournier

Anabelle is a freelance writer, writing teacher and blogger. She spends a lot of time at home, so she likes to make sure that it's cozy and nice, especially in her reading nook. In her free time, Anabelle knits, walks and learns how to write stories.