What to Expect and How to Manage an Interior Designer

June 12, 2019
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Hiring a good interior designer can help transform your home into one that is functional, efficient and also visually pleasing at the same time. If you are about to seek the services of an interior designer, read on to find out what to expect and how to manage them for a smooth working relationship.

Twentyfive.7 Premio, Kota Kemuning by ZI Atelier Sdn Bhd
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Interior Firm: ZI Atelier Sdn Bhd

1. Look beyond budget

More often than not, the only thing a homeowner has decided on is the budget. If you are only focused on the financial side, you may end up hiring a designer based on your budget, but isn’t necessarily a right fit.

Know that not all interior designers behave the same, you absolutely need to hire one that understands the design you are looking at, one whom you're unafraid to ask questions about the design, and preferably one who can advise whether a certain design or feature is practical for your lifestyle.

Denai Alam, Shah Alam by Meridian Interior Design
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Expect that if you hire a designer in a rush without getting to know them, there is a good chance that you will run into a host of problems down the line (i.e. clashes of personality and communication styles, etc.) and end up dissatisfied.

2. Scrutinise renovation offers

Don’t part with your money, even for seemingly attractive packaged deals; until you are sure you’ve found a designer that is legit. Do not decide on a designer without first consulting with them, checking out their portfolio, and seeking trustworthy recommendations or reviews.

Lakefront Residence, Cyberjaya by Anwill Design Sdn Bhd
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Interior Firm: Anwill Design Sdn Bhd

What’s the most efficient way to research and source for potential interior designers? You can start by reading about the experiences of real homeowners and their reviews of specific design firms on trusted sites like Qanvast. You can also request free quotes, to be matched with five top interior design firms based on your style preferences and budget.

Taman Sejati Jaya, Sitiawan Perak by ZOGE
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Interior Firm: ZOGE

3. Look for a designer who understands you

Shocking but true: interior designers, even the very best ones cannot psychically give you the décor of your dreams. And being vague with your designer is a sure-fire way to end up with a home that doesn’t satisfy you. Thus, it’s important to have your own design preferences pinned down. Do your research to discover what you like in terms of style; check out our Projects’ page for inspiration. Be sure to save pictures and web links to share with your designer, as this will help them clearly visualise and execute your aesthetic and style needs.

Armanee Terrace, Damansara Perdana by Infinite Interior Design
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4. Designers can do so much more than just make your home pretty

An interior designer’s job isn’t to merely decorate the house; they can help improve the functionality and solve liveability problems in the home through clever design. Thus, you should audit your home for areas that could be more functional, for example, better lighting systems, more electrical points, soundproofing etc. You can also simply discuss your needs with your designer and ask for their advice on possible home improvements.

V2 Residence, Sunway Velocity by Cube Asia Design
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Interior Firm: Cube Asia Design

5. Respect boundaries

The best way into a smooth and fruitful relationship with your designer is to simply communicate respectfully and clearly. Keep the relationship professional and avoid texting or calling at late hours. It’s also recommended that you use email for important issues, so that you have written proof in case disputes arise.

Ritz Carlton Residence, Kuala Lumpur by Blaine Robert Design Sdn. Bhd.
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We can recommend interior designers to you

Need help in shortlisting firms that fit your budget? Submit your request here and we will handpick up to 5 firms that fit your budget and style for free!

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