Written by Koh Yee Seng on 18 Mar 2019
Not our first renovation so we know what to look for this time round. We got leads from both friends and Qanvast, went through initial meet up, discussions and quotations for more than 5 firms.
Ideas: Being a design-and-build project, we already have a pretty good idea on the overall concept. Shui Min (SM) was very open and caught on to our themes and requirements very quickly, so the back and forth is very effecient and fruitful. SM was never pushy, and serves as a practical voice to remind us on what is possible or not.
Problem solving: Even when our requirements are challenging, for the "must" on our wishlist, he gave us the attention and time to sit down and work out how to overcome these obstacles. His never-say-never attitude helped us realized some really difficult design details and requirements where a lesser designer / firm may have given up.
Price: Not the cheapest, but certainly down-to-earth compared to other exorbitant competitors. We never felt that we were taken for a ride at any time.
Responsiveness: Fast enough, even on busy days he will try to get back within the same day. Big on responsibility and we never felt that he was AWOL throughout the project. Kudos.
Flexibility: Very impressive. Job scope is a living document that is always open to changes if needed by clients. This becomes an obvious benefit as projects never goes according to plan and clients' wishes may evolve mid-way. I would imagine some other firms we interviewed may have big issues with this.
Details: The flip-side of flexibility. Does miss out certain details and needs reminders on some details.
Crisis management: For onsite hiccups, he is quick to respond and can call up alternative resources in reasonably quick time. Doesn't dodge responsibility, that's a big plus!
Quality: Average, some workers are more skilled than others. Certain areas needed rework after we inspected onsite.
Leadtime: Gave 2 months, completed in + 1 week due to unforeseen issues. Did his best to pull in resources when problems encountered. Aces in this area.
Budget: Flexible in scope to help manage budget. Spot-on pricing with less than 5% deviation.
You can't do any better for a design-and-build project. If you have a clear idea in mind, SM and GB Interior will turn your vision to reality and then some. They deal very fairly with their clients and that is really a breath of fresh air compared to many other firms that we have spoken to. SM will put you at ease and never pushes ideas that will make you uncomfortable.
When things don't turn out perfect, (and they inevitably don't when the complexity is high) SM never leaves you hanging and never dodges responsibility if it is his. That speaks volumes for the ship he runs. That alone is good enough to recommend him to anyone in a similar situation.
Work quality and eye for details could be improved, but nothing's perfect. Having gone through the entire process we think the pro's far outweighs the con's. Especially in this industry with so many nightmare stories.
We are happy campers and very glad we chose SM and GB Interior for our home.
(Take note this review is based on design-and-build project with complex scope, we may not be able to represent homemakers that are completely reliant on design, or looking for "off-the-shelf" packages.)
Written by Reyna Choo on 18 Mar 2019
My husband and I were looking for a reliable ID firm to help us with the renovation of our kitchen and our close friend suggested Icon Interior. We were assigned to Chloe and she went through with us the relevant packages and gave us suggestions. We were initially quite skeptical and took a while to agree but Chloe gave us the assurance and guided us along. She made sure that she delivered everything she had promised and in fact went the extra mile to do many enhancements for our kitchen. I finally got my dream kitchen and thanks to Chloe who made this whole process very effortless and gave us the best! Really thankful to Chloe. We will definitely go back to them for our future reno works!
Written by Tan Choon Kiat on 18 Mar 2019
Had bought an old resale flat at Toa Payoh and frankly speaking, renovating a 40+ years old is quite daunting given that everything is old and replacing them would be costly. Hence budget wise is a major consideration.
I would like to share on my personal experience with Lifestyle + Pte Ltd and their designer Vinc Loh and how he helped me and my wife navigate the entire renovation process till handling over.
Firstly, after a few quotes received, we decided to opt for Lifestyle + Pte Ltd.’s quote because we see that they did not try to inflate the quotes by trying to upsell addition area of work here and there like what I received from some other IDs. It is strictly based on what I have communicated on my desired outcome. In fact he even help to eliminate unnecessary alteration works to help bring down the over cost to within my budget.
Secondly, Vinc is professional in his dealings and knowledgeable and knows his trade well. He would share with you what are the potential down sides or constraints of certain features I wanted and based on his experience, recommended alternatives or workaround. He also offered his professional views on some of the colour matching etc. cause I am not really good at colours.
Lastly, he value adds where possible such as pointing to me where to get the best deals for appliances like air-conditioners, lightings and other fixtures etc.
No regrets engaging Lifestyle + Ple Ltd’s service and having Vinc to help us. Most happy with the kitchen and bathrooms and the taken down kitchen/living wall. Essentially re-did the entire kitchen and bathroom to nothing that looks like a 40+ years house. I would not hesitate to engage his service again(if I ever shift house again) or recommend to my friends.
By Enzo Tan
Written by ivy on 18 Mar 2019
My husband and I shortlisted a few ID companies, visited them had gotten a few quotes before finally deciding on Earth Interior Design. The quote was not the cheapest but we feel that we can entrust them with our home. It’s the sincerity and assurance that place them higher than other IDs. Vincent and Aaron were our designers for our brand new home. During the first meeting, Vincent came across as very sincere and he knew exactly what we want and provided suggestions and ideas in line with our ideal home. Throughout the whole process, they were easy to work with and very accommodative to our request and went the extra mile to ensure that everything is in place. They even install the various fixtures that I’ve bought online as well as cutting and laying my carpet grass with an “Ok! No Problem!” attitude and at no additional charges.
From the 3D drawings, we are able to visualize how our home will look like but in reality, it turned out even better and how everything blends in perfectly really caught us by surprise. (e.g. the shadows from lights installed on beams formed a pretty symmetrical design on the wall when turned on). Vincent and Aaron also assisted us with liaising with various vendors on installation dates/time, delivery dates/time and will update us with photos and these photos made my day as it is part of the growth chart for our home.
Vincent is very detail oriented and provided good suggestions which make perfect sense but never crossed our minds. While the renovation is on-going, we requested for some changes to be made and he never once said “No”, it’s always “don’t worry, I’ll settle for you”. It makes us feel that his ultimate goal is just for us to be pleased with everything and have our perfect home. He helped us in a lot of ways and we had no worries as whenever we needed help it’s always “aiya! Ask Vincent la, he sure knows...” He’s our ID, our handyman as well as our durian opener. He was just as excited as us when looking at how my house transformed and it’s always good to see that one is happy and proud of his work.
Vincent is also good at building rapport with various contractors and due to this, we benefitted as well. Ah Yen who was our electrician works efficiently and he knows exactly what Vincent had in mind.
There were some errors in measurement of wood but Ah You (the carpenter) was fast to rectify it and fix it up for us, he also accommodates our last minute request for additional tweaks which we were thankful for.
Some of my friends had really bad experience dealing with ID etc… but for us, it has been a great process, freed from nightmares and horror stories. A big big thank you to Vincent for attending to every major to minor details as well as turning our house into a home.
Written by Kelvin on 18 Mar 2019
I saw Earth Interiors’ portfolio and generally loved the feel that Earth had done so we are drawn towards Earth. Met Vince at their showroom unit and he managed to click with us and we felt comfortable with him. He gave us sound advices on how to plan our spaces and we are very happy with what he helped us to achieve. Midway thru the renovation progress went abit slow and we were concerned whether can we complete on time and Vince did his best to push thru with the stipulated timeframe that we gave him and he ensure quality was not compromised. He managed to deliver what he promised.
Overall Vince is an excellent designer who’s very committed and trustworthy. I will recommend Earth Interior and especially Vince to new home owners.
Written by Guangzheng Ang on 18 Mar 2019
How we met Lemonfridge can be best described as one good deed deserves another :) I approached Renee to ask about the possibility of using one of her client's home for filming, she was responsive and really easy to talk to. When it came time for me to do my own renovation, I decided to reach out to her and true enough, she provided us with the best mix of creativity and cost efficient suggestions.
The renovation process was smooth, Renee & Jeff were always helpful and attentive to our requests and questions. We deviated quite a bit from the original design but kudos to their quick-thinking and ideas, the outcome was one that we were really pleased with. The quality of the workmanship and after-service supported rendered, even a few months after completion really impressed us.
We'd heartily recommend Lemonfridge to friends and family, they are a fun bunch that keeps the home-owners interests in mind and do things with heart. Thank you Renee and Jeff!
Written by Jessie Zhou on 18 Mar 2019
Mr Kent Tan is very experience and helpful designer. He is willing to go to the extra mile to help his clients needs and wants. Kent is also a very responsible designer and contractor to work with as he tries his best to help us whenever we need him. His top notch customer service is greatly appreciated.We love how our house is designed and renovated and can not wait to move in. Good job Urban Design ~
Written by jim on 18 Mar 2019
we picked jade after visiting 5 firms. she was able to build the chemistry real fast with us during the initial discussion phase. we still chose her despite being not the lowest quote. sometimes it is not all about the cost, the need for chemistry is really important.
she was unconventional in her ideas, and we like being unconventional. no one really wishes their house to be copy-and-paste style. so we are able to synergise her ideas and our ideal concepts. she was always ready to provide new ideas and will not hesitate to provide better solutions if our idea did not work out.
hiccups were unavoidable and common in almost any renovation project. she was able to resolve most, or if she couldnt, she would quickly present her alternative solution which convinced us to buy-in. other than the timeline got a little stretched due to various miscommunications, we are still glad the house turns out within our expectations. workmanship is good on the broader picture, but probably can be a little more meticulous on the finer stuffs that is not outright obvious.
Written by C Yeo on 17 Mar 2019
Krey was a delight to work with. He was prompt in getting back to us. Regardless of the time, Krey would always be contactable. We had a pleasant experience working with him because he is detailed, responsible and would not go MIA on us. He was transparent about pricing, kept to our budget and despite some delays here and there, we were also able to complete the renovation on time.
As first-time home owners, we were able to trust Krey to handle everything. His colour coordination sense was really good. We gave him a theme, explained our idea and he was able to come up with the colour scheme. When choosing colours and laminate designs, Krey was proactive and he helped to shortlist 3 that he felt would be a good match. We could even trust Krey to choose the colour of our furnitures. Krey also gave practical advice. While we did not make any major changes or rectifications during the renovation, Krey was very accommodating towards us and even waived any additional charges incurred from the minor rectifications/changes.
When Krey brought us to shop for fittings and appliances, he was not 'pushy'. He did not pressure us and allowed us to choose we really liked/wanted, even if it meant that we did not buy from his supplier. His carpentry and tiling team really went the extra mile for us as well!
I felt that the most outstanding quality about Krey is his ability to listen and understand what his clients truly want. He would put himself in his client's shoes and make suggestions and recommendations based on that. When it came to the theme of the house, we had a consensus and at times when I "stray" from my concept, he would always be there to remind me so that we would not deviate too far from our conceptualised interior design. He was professional in that sense and he stood by his design proudly. I prefer and appreciate his pride and confidence in his work, rather than giving in blindly to every whims and demands of the customer. Without Krey, my dream home would not have materialised.
Written by Jennifer Lion on 17 Mar 2019
Both my husband and I would like to express our gratitude towards our Interior Designer Mr. Enzo from The Design Practice.
As both of us are having businesses in both Singapore and Malaysia, we’re residing in both countries as well. Basically we are only staying in Singapore maximum 7 days a month.
Enzo from The Design Practice and few other IDs from different companies contacted me after I registered my account in Qantas.
We met one ID from another firm initially. She wasted our $2000 and almost two months time waiting for the 3D drawings.
I then got in touch with Enzo and arranged for a meet up and discussion.
Both my hubby and I are so pleased and glad that we had Enzo to take care of our 5rm HDB renovation works.
We were in Malaysia and overseas for business trips throughout the whole renovation period. We had never ever step into our HDB to monitor the work progress as Enzo would take care of everything for us.
Enzo is a very helpful, kind, articulate, knowledgeable person. He would respond to our WhatsApp enquiries typically within an hour.
Enzo took every small details into considerations and would recommend the best material based on our budget.
Enzo took pride in his work and gave us his 100% attention to all our concerns.
Enzo helped me with all my furnitures and fitting selections and even helped me to arrange for electrical appliances deliveries and also installation of my digital lock on the grille and wooden door. Oh yes, not to forget that he actually took the extra miles to help me to purchase nice chandelier and dinning light from Johor Bahru. He helped me to look for curtain vendor from JB too. He’s a very resourceful person and would always do his best to help his clients to save cost.
I would strongly recommend The Design Practice and Mr. Enzo as your ID if you want a stress free renovation experience.
Never heard of anyone having stress free renovation? You should try them out. I am sure that this would be the best choice for your renovation journey.
Written by Lee Sai Hong on 17 Mar 2019
I found Beaux Monde’s advert on Carousell. At first, there weren’t many reviews at all there, and I wasn’t too sure. We needed our kitchen renovation to be completed in as quick a time as possible as we hoped for my mom to have home-cooked food to eat due to health reasons, and wanted to minimize eating out/tingkat etc. We hoped that we could find a designer-contractor who could help us with these requirements and understand our situation.
After brief chatting with Billy via Carousell, and thereafter meeting him face to face, I sensed that he was very sincere about helping us and understood our situation. He genuinely cared about our requirements and reassured us that he would try his best to discuss with his demolition, carpentry and electricity teams to accelerate the process of the renovation. We are so glad and relieved we went ahead with Billy to do our kitchen renovation. He was really true to his word and went all out to go the extra mile for us!
All throughout the process, Billy was very polite, and easy to communicate with via WhatsApp. Whether it was day or night, he always could be contacted, and he always was polite, friendly, and he is very quick-thinking. He can understand what you are trying to convey to him and he has good memory. He has many good ideas that are creative, practical, and he helps you think of how to save money as well. He is honest and polite in helping you around your budget, and shares with you details about the materials to choose, and let’s you decide. He is always very respectful towards your decisions and he shares his opinions candidly too. Thus working with him is relaxing and fun. I think this is a very rare quality in a designer. Never once did he lose his cool, and he was never impatient.
His carpentry, electric and demolition team are also very friendly and nice people. They were diligent, quick at working, and their workmanship is fine quality too. If there was a need for rectification, Billy was very quick to make arrangements and work around the schedule each time. All in all, the demolition, carpentry, electric was done in very miraculous timing, and the whole process was reassuring and pleasant. Billy really did his best to help us throughout the process. We are so blessed to have come across him to handle our kitchen renovation for us!
We are so thankful to Billy and his team. We strongly recommend him to others. If you want a pleasant experience for any renovation work, do yourself a favor and choose Billy and his team!
Written by Lee on 17 Mar 2019
I have chosen Metamorph out of the 5 IDs recommended by Qanvast since it is the only ID that came back with quotation within the timeframe as promised. Our designer ZY did a very great job in revamping our terrace house facade, giving it a totally new look! The 3D graphics that he provided allows us to visualise and make decisions easily. I’m also pleased to receive regular updates on the renovation progress, giving me peace-of-mind without the need to monitor personally through on-site visits. Based on my past experiences with many other renovation companies, this is by far the best in terms of project management, design and quality. Will definitely recommend to my relatives and friends. Great job!
Interior Designer Reviews
When choosing an interior designer, we believe that doing your own research matters – and it’s the reason why we have compiled a comprehensive list of independent homeowner reviews from all over Singapore for your reference.
Our reviews are vetted and independently submitted by verified users, so you can be sure that they will help you make the right move in your renovation journey.
You can also make a more informed decision by checking out these useful resources and guides:
- Get a budget estimate with the Qanvast Renovation Calculator
- Read Renovation Journey Stories from Homeowners
- True Stories: How Hiring an ID helped these homeowners
- What to Expect When Engaging an Interior Designer
- What Local Homeowners Think About Renovation in Singapore
Hiring an interior designer, contractor or architect for the very first time? Keep an eye out for these key characteristics and details before choosing to work with a design firm and/or service:
Project portfolio – What type of projects has your designer completed to date? Are they a good fit for your needs?
Chemistry – Is your designer a good communicator? Are your interactions pleasant?
Quote – Are you comfortable with your designer’s quotation? How does it compare to similar projects?
Management style – Does your designer handle his work with care? Is he or she on the ball about his/her work?
Reviews and references – What do other clients and/or homeowners say about your chosen designer?