With over ten years of experience in the industry, and about to celebrate the firm's ninth anniversary, Guimar has worked with many types of clients. Understandably, there may be some confusion when approaching your first project and how to chose the right designer for your needs. We have narrowed down a few tips that can prepare you and better guide you in the right direction.
1. Establish Your Needs
It is may seem obvious at first, but it is not uncommon that we receive phone calls of people requesting interior design service without being able to tell us what they need. Are you looking to hire an interior design to join the project prior to construction? Is it a smaller scale project involving just furniture and finishing selection?
Interior Design, unlike decoration, involves a wide range of responsibilities. We have the ability to work together with architects to design the articulation of spaces, we contract the team for plumbing, mechanical, and electrical systems. Through design, we can transform environments completely and remove walls and do so with the proper permitting. For this reason, it is very important to establish details and specifications of the projects before contacting designers. This will save your time, headaches, and money down the road.
2. Determine Your Budget
Set your price limit and look for a professional that works within it.
For many reasons, we deal with potential clients that are very wary of disclosing the project's budget. It may feel that a budget can "limit" creativity or their options. However, a budget is a necessity since creativity and inspiration is endless, however money is not. Many designers already have budget limits set, particularly higher end firms that cater to larger scale projects and offer full-range service and one-on-one experience. If this important aspect is not disclosed from the beginning, you may indeed end up spending much more than wanted and run into bigger complications.
3. Do Your Research
Scope of work, budget, and time frame have been set. Now its time to look for the perfect designer! Research. Look into designers in the area and what they have worked on. Luckily for modern times, website are not just great but essential. Before you pick up the phone and start calling every interior designer found in Google search, check out their website, or links related to their work. If you are looking to do a large contemporary office, don't waste your time or the other person's inquiring a traditional residential designer. By this point you have already decided the style direction which helps narrow down the options greatly. Look through portfolios and see if their taste compliment yours.
4. Schedule First Meetings
Interior Design, particularly for homes, is an amazing and personal journey. If the designer's portfolio impresses you, reach out to schedule a meeting. This one-on-one factor will help you decide if their personality and work ethic is in tune with what you need.
Also very important to add, before calling, know the name of the designer and firm. Our team is constantly surprised with people calling our office and not knowing who Guimar Urbina is.
5. Sign Contracts
To conclude, be diligent about paperwork. Read through contracts, approve the Scope of Work, and pricing structure. The designer may be missing or overseeing a particular aspect you are interested in, for example project management, and it is equally the responsibility of the client to be aware. Contracts are necessary for the protection of both parties and on a lighter note, allow for a smoother experience and transparent experience. Keep it to the point and professional so the rest of the process can be fun and liberating.