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19 Questions Article 3 - Continue

Question 11
“What is your Marketing plan for my home?”
Have the interior designer explain step-by-step exactly what they plan to do to _______________ for your home. Every interior designer will _____________ and ________________. Look for an interior designer that utilises _________________ to give you a long lasting look and feel???.

Question 12
“How Much Do You Charge?”
As a rule, consultants fee are not fixed and are negotiable. You want to get the best deal you can, but be careful. Most top interior designers are very reluctant to cut their fee much. Beware of an interior designer that agrees to a big up front reduction in their fee – it probably means that they don’t plan on spending much time or effort on _____________ your home in the first place. A good interior designer can be worth every cent that you pay them.

Question 13
“What ______________ Do You Recommend For My Home?”
The interior designer should be prepared to suggest a ________ or ________ for your home, and explain to you exactly how they came up with it. They should have a _____________________. Watch the interior designer carefully here; this is an area where you can really gauge their experience and ability.

Question 14
“How ______________?”
The _______________________. There is no set rule here, it depends on ________________________. Unless the interior designer has a compelling reason why _________, the _______________ should be adequate. The interior designer deserves a fair go, so be sure to give them enough time to get the job done.

Question 15
“How Much Will I _________________?”
A competent interior designer should be able to quickly determine approximately _______________________. This is another area where you’ll want to watch the interior designer closely. An experienced interior designer should be able to do this in ___________ and confidently explain what the costs associated with ________ are.

Question 16
“How Will You Keep Me Informed?”
Clear communication between yourself and the interior designer is critical for a transformation of your home. The interior designer should have a system for keeping you abreast of the progress of the project, be it by phone call, letter, fax, etc. The interior designer or a competent assistant should be available to you at all reasonable hours.

Question 17
“Will You Advise Me On Preparing And Staging The Home?”
A home that is properly prepared and staged should always sell faster and at a higher price. The interior designer should provide you with tips and suggestions on how to accomplish this. A good interior designer will give you honest recommendations, even at the risk of offending you.

Question 18
“What If I Am Not Satisfied?”
Even though you do your homework, it is possible that you will engage an interior designer that doesn’t understand your requirements or more likely, wants to impose their own personal vision and style preferences into your home – when you don’t want this! The top interior designers, the ones who provide quality service and are confident about it, will usually offer you a guarantee. Just make sure to be fair with the interior designer and give them the benefit of the doubt.

Question 19
“Do You Have Any Questions For Me?”
Beware of an interior designer that doesn’t have some questions for you as well. A sharp interior designer will begin by asking you a series of questions in order to fully understand your situation. Only then can they advise you on the best course of action to take.

Taking the time to do a little research before you engage an interior designer can save you many hours of frustration and many thousands of dollars. Take your time, and make an informed decision!

How much will an interior designer's services cost me?
Different designers have different methods of charging clients for services. Some of the most common methods include the following:
 Hourly plus a percentage markup on cost of purchases: This fee structure charges an hourly fee in addition to a cost-plus on purchases.
 Hourly and per diem: The designer is paid for all of his or her time. This may include, but is not limited to, consultations, conceptual design, space planning, preparation of drawings, cabinet designs, budget, observing contractors, shopping, and travel.
 Flat fee: One fee is decided upon for the entire project. This fee structure requires a thorough and detailed understanding of the services to be rendered and the specific areas involved. The written contract should state that no additional services are to be added.
 Retail: The designer charges a retail price for all items that are purchased. This fee structure generally is used when the designer works for a retail furniture store.

Many interior designers use a combination of the methods mentioned above. Do not be afraid to question the interior designer regarding exactly how he or she charges for services.

The interior designer will ask you about your budget and the type of investment you want to make. Furniture and good design are investments. Good-quality pieces will be with you for a very long time. Be prepared to give a ballpark figure. Even if you don't know what furniture and design services cost today, you should still have some idea of what you are comfortable spending. Your designer can help you clarify exactly how far your money will go.

How do I choose which interior designer is right for me?
Working with an interior designer is similar to a marriage or a business partnership. It requires open communication and trust. This person will be spending many hours in your home, and it is important that you feel comfortable with and trust him or her. You are buying a service and paying for the expertise of your interior designer just as you pay for your lawyer and accountant. Ask yourself these three questions:
1. How's our rapport? It is important that your interior designer listen to you as well as having great ideas.
2. Can I speak frankly? If you feel intimidated saying, "I hate pink," or, "This table costs twice what I can spend," you may need a different interior designer.
3. Am I being asked enough questions? Remember that the interior designer is interviewing you as much as you're interviewing him or her. In order to get an interior that is customised to your needs, the designer must ask you a lot of questions.

Do I have to do the whole house at once?

Do not feel that you can only call an interior designer to do a complete house. Your interior designer will help you prioritise your design needs and make suggestions as to what can be accomplished with your present budget. It is not uncommon for a designer to work with a client for one to three years in order to complete a project. Most interior designers would rather do each area right on its own than do a whole house in a very short time. But at the same time, it is important to design for the entire house, so that each room flows into the next and there is a relationship between one area and the next.

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