Homeowners Share: How to Choose the Right Interior Designer for your Reno

Planning to renovate your home this year? Choosing the right interior designer for your home renovation is probably one of the scariest yet most important steps!

Instead of diving in blind and regretting your choice, consider these tips from local homeowners to ensure you choose the right designer from the start.

Evaluate the designer, not the firm

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Many homeowners make the mistake of stopping once they’ve picked the design firm, forgetting that every designer has a unique style and approach to design, even within the same firm.

“Evaluate mainly the person, not the firm they come from,” share Tiffany and Bryan (@jingwensathome), whose resale HDB flat was beautifully renovated with an open-concept kitchen and its own cat room.

“The firm is important in terms of resources, relationships with contractors, etc., but your main person of contact is your ID, so make sure you get along with them.”

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Yumei and Jing Hao from @ameijinghome echo this sentiment, reflecting on their long-awaited mid-century modern BTO renovation.

“Assessing designers’ personal portfolios is a good way to gauge their suitability from the get-go, instead of leaving it to chance if you go with the latter, as companies tend to match you randomly with any available ID.”

Pick a designer you get along with

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When it comes to looking beyond the design firm and choosing an individual ID, it’s not just about assessing portfolios and experience. One important consideration is simply how well you get along and, consequently, whether you feel confident placing your trust in this designer.

When sharing their experience choosing an ID for their Mediterranean-inspired BTO flat, Corinne and Fazlie (@cnbrr.hm) say they felt comfortable trading ideas from the start and placed their trust fully in their designer, making the renovation process smooth.

“He offered fresh, helpful perspectives that we would not have thought of otherwise. He is also proactive when it comes to dealing with the minutiae of the renovation process, so we trusted him completely and did not need to stress over the details,” the couple shares.

Find a designer who respects your budget

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Something crucial to look out for when shortlisting designers for your renovation? Someone who respects your budget and other reno boundaries. This is especially important if you encounter delays or unexpected costs, and when the time comes to fit out and furnish your place.

“Look for designers who are willing to work within your budget and are not too pushy,” recommend Marcus and Zoey (@habitamp), who wound up with a unique, eclectic flat in Tampines.

“Our designer was very mindful of our budget and respected our vision. She never once tried to sell us things we didn’t need.”

Choose a designer who aligns with your style

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Last but certainly not least, you’ll want to choose a designer who aligns with your style. This ensures that you don’t clash during the design process and allows your ID to make more suitable suggestions if you’re out of ideas.

“Meet with designers who can resonate with your style,” suggests Faezah (@__faezah__mokhtar), whose gorgeous maisonette and dreamy service yard we can’t get enough of. “Different designers have different strengths and they may not all be able to execute the look you want to achieve.”

So, if you’re envisioning an eclectic, playful home full of colour, don’t go for a designer whose portfolio is full of modern, minimalist designs!