With space-maximization and energy-saving becoming more important nowadays, more homeowners are enlisting the help of interior designers. However, even with the popularity of interior design services, there is still some confusion as to what this profession entails. Here are a few things you have to know about interior design before hiring a designer:

What is Interior Design?

Interior design is a multi-faceted profession which combines both creative and technical knowledge, with the aim of creating a functional and aesthetically pleasing interior. Contrary to popular belief, there is a difference between interior designing and decorating, with decorating being only a part of interior design. Rather than being limited to interior decorations, interior design is a coordination of the building’s exterior and its interior arrangement, taking into consideration the activities and personal tastes of the occupiers, as well as social context and physical location.

Interior Design: What services does it involve?

For some, interior design may seem like a vague catch-all term for anything that has to do with home improvement. To help you decide whether to hire an interior designer, here is a rundown of services involved in interior design:

  1. Research and analysis of the client’s goals, tastes, and requirements. This also includes assessment of the client’s needs based on his/her lifestyle and activities.
  2. Creation of preliminary space plans and design concepts. This involves the selection of themes for the interiors and the creation of two or three-dimensional layouts and sketches.
  3. Selection of colors, materials, furniture, and fixtures to suit the interior layout and the client’s preferences.
  4. Integration of public health and safety requirements, building code, and environmental guidelines into the design.
  5. Project management services, including contract documentation, budget preparation, and creation of a work plan/schedule.
  6. Coordination with other professionals involved in the project, such as architects, engineers, and other specialty consultants.
  7. Overseeing project implementation and reporting the project’s progress, especially in cases when the client may not be personally available to check the site.

What are the types of Interior Design?

Interior design is often classified into two main categories, depending on the type of space involved. These categories are:

  1. Residential design. This is the more popular type of interior design, and it deals with the improvement of private living spaces, be it putting together a new house or renovating an old home. Depending on your needs and budget, residential design can range from an upscaling of a specific room to a full-blown renovation of the entire house. 
  2. Commercial design. Interior designers specializing in commercial design plan public spaces, such as hospitals, government offices, corporate buildings, and commercial establishments. As compared to residential design, commercial design tends to be more specialized. This is because designing a public space requires specific knowledge of how the area can be utilized more effectively by both customers and employees.

Before hiring an interior designer, it is important to first understand the work involved in interior design. This will not only give you an idea of what to expect from your designer, but it will also help you in assessing what you can reasonably demand as a client.