Every homeowner dreams of living in a perfect space. We often have a vision in our minds about how we want our room to look, the pieces we want to include, and most importantly, how we want our homes to feel.
Many people opt to contract interior design firms to craft their dream home for them. In many cases, this is the best way to realize the vision you have in your mind. However, paying for an interior designer can get very expensive. They will also have their own ideas about what will make your house beautiful.
These are just a few reasons why you need to consider learning how to do interior design for yourself. In this article, we’ll explore these two topics and two others in-depth. We’ll also explore some benefits of having extensive experience in interior design you may not have realized.
1. The Potential to Save Money
First and foremost, you can save a lot of money by opting to do your own interior design and decorating. Home Advisor reports that an interior designer can charge anywhere between $50 and $200 per hour. Alternately, some designers charge a certain percentage of the total project cost as their fee. How much that fees actually ends up being, depends on how much your design project costs.
Fees Associated with Interior Design Projects
The key to remember is that the more extensive your project, the more it’s going to cost. Depending on the scope of your project, you may pay all of these costs or none of them. Typical costs associated with an interior design project include:
- Rendering – Generating a blueprint of your home’s current and future layout to guide design efforts
- Furnishing – Buying the furniture, decor, and paints you’ll use to decorate your home
- Contracting – Bringing in painters, carpenters, electricians, or any other trade professionals the job calls for
- Consulting – Engaging interior designers to conduct research, compose a timeline, source and install products, and manage contractors
After averaging these costs together, a project can cost anywhere between $1,000 and up to $50,000. If your interior designer charged a 20% fee against a $5,000 project, you’d be paying a total of $6,000 for their services.
2. Complete Control of Your Vision
As I mentioned in the introduction, interior designers are individuals with their own ideas of beauty. This can lead to clashes with the designer about what choices need to be made to realize your beautiful and functional home. In fact, Design Docs listed “maintaining client expectations” as one of the biggest challenges that interior designers face.
When you do your own design, you control every part of the interior design process. These are some of the common aspects you gain control of:
How you want your room to ‘flow’ will play a huge role in your final design. You’ll need to design the floorplans, wall structure, electrical wiring, and heating/cooling circulation. This can be complicated, but if you’re not planning on adjusting the actual layout of your home, you can skip it.
You’ll need to choose the color scheme that carries the emotional impact you want. Depending on what you want each room to achieve from a psychological standpoint, you can opt for multiple color schemes, or just stick with one.
Furniture and Decor Items
You’ll also control which furniture pieces you use, and what they’re made of, by doing your own design. In particular, you control what you get in terms of price, fabric, and size. Many designers have relationships with furniture and decor vendors that they default to for each project. By controlling this aspect, you ensure you get the widest selection of pieces possible.
Simply put, you control when the project gets done. Interior designers do their best to meet the timeline you’ve agreed on but they sometimes miss the mark. By doing it all yourself, you control when you start shopping, when you start bringing in any contractors, and when your project gets completed.
3. The Ability to Jumpstart Your Own Career
Once you’re both trained and certified in interior design, you can not only manage your own projects but use your skills to make money for yourself! By becoming a freelance interior designer, you can help someone realize the same great vision for a home that you’ve crafted for yourself.
While some interior designers opt to join a design firm, others choose to freelance. The latter groups only take on the projects they want to work on, with clients they don’t mind working with. It would allow you the greatest degree of freedom between work and family.
Additionally, many freelance interior designers don’t maintain a physical location – they conduct their business completely online. The Architectural Digest reported that a growing wave of interior designers are starting their own consulting firms in the digital domain. You could also opt to start an online service, and help people create their perfect living space from the comfort of your own home.
4. Indulge in Your Creativity
One of the more abstract advantages of doing your own design is the ability to indulge your creativity. When you contract an interior designer, they’re the ones who really engage the right side of their brain. All you really do is choose between the options they present to you.
Don’t underestimate the positive impact that art can have on your own life. Even if you don’t pursue interior design as a profession, everyone needs to have a creative outlet to offset the grind of day-to-day living. A study proofed by the Beijing Normal University in China found that artistic pursuits lessen feelings of depression, reduce anxiety, and leave people feeling happier with their life.
The interior design process definitely has some technical aspects. Calculating dimensions, costs, and timelines are all firmly rooted in the logical side of the brain. But there are just as many opportunities for you to indulge your creative side with your own design projects.