Designing and arranging your own flat is a challenge that almost everyone will sooner or later face. If you don’t have much experience or your own ideas for successful implementation, it is good to consider the possibility of hiring a professional. If you live in a big city such as London, you can choose from a huge selection of architects and designers. However, the process of finding the right one may be time-consuming and a little overwhelming. By reading this article you will learn how to look for the right architect or interior designer in London and what to look for when choosing a professional to cooperate with.
Is it worth hiring interior designers or architects? What will the professional do for you?
A good interior designer always listens to the client’s suggestions and wishes. His task is to make them a reality and transform the ideas into a living space that the client will love to come home to. He must take into account various: technical, financial and logistic aspects of the project. The interior designer will help you solve the problem with a space that is too small or a space that is hard to change – which are common issues for people living in London.
UNIVERSAL, TIMELESS, AND UNUSUAL SOLUTIONS
Many good interior designers in London and architects will most likely offer you solutions that you would never have thought of, as well as those that will look just as good in 5 or 10 years. It’s not about reproducing current fashion and trends, but about a timeless, good design. An additional advantage is the fact that apartments designed by professionals often have greater market value, so if you ever decide to sell your flat, you’ll get a much better price.
BUDGET UNDER CONTROL, SAVINGS AND INVESTMENTS
A professional interior designer works within the set budget and this issue must always be clearly stated. The designer will show you where you can save money, and what elements are worth investing in.
CORRECTNESS OF IMPLEMENTATION
The designer is responsible for the correctness of the project (if the contract includes an executive design with supervision). The presence of the designer will allow you to avoid costly mistakes that may be the result of wrong decisions made in the field of “foreign” topics. They may result, for example, from improper measurements, selection of unverified subcontractors, or saving on inadequate elements.
The residential interior designers in London will choose specific solutions, products and materials for you, take care of purchasing them, and will help in obtaining favourable discounts. It will save you both time and money.
An architect or an interior designer? What’s the difference?
These two different professions are most often confused by clients, but they concern a completely different scope of work while furnishing the flat. The architect is not always needed – or the interior designer may not always be enough.
The architect deals with interior architecture, which means that he usually begins his work with empty walls. His task is to create a functional, thoughtful space, he can suggest changing the layout of rooms, design interesting lighting and deal with the layout of other installations. An interior architect, as a person with a higher, graduate education, who knows the realities of the market, has a lot of industry knowledge, knows interesting materials, available solutions and products. The interior designer, however, usually enters a space that is ready for decorating and deals with the final stage of arranging the interior by analyzing the existing state of the flat. The interior designer focuses on furniture, materials and accessories – he’s trying to create the interior so that it fully matches the personality of its owner.
Before you invite someone to work on your interior, it is necessary for you to analyze your own expectations. If you cannot cope with the challenge yourself – ask for a professional help.
How to choose a good architect or interior designer?
• Grapevine – always effective! It is good to start by knowing whether someone you know has used the services of an architect or interior designer in London and can recommend it. It is difficult to get a better recommendation for an architect unknown to you than the one from your friends, honestly satisfied with his work. Ask about whether the cooperation ran smoothly, whether they are satisfied with the proposed solutions, whether the designer managed to fit in the budget and whether the project works well in everyday life. An additional bonus is the fact that you have the chance to see the implementation with your own eyes.
• Read carefully the portfolio of the architects or interior designers you like. By analyzing the previous project of the architects or interior designers in London that you are interested in, you will most probably see a certain cohesion among them all. The designer’s main task is to design for you, according to your taste – but also every experienced interior designer has a kind of his own, unique style of design, which is a consequence of his individual vision of space, ingenuity, creativity, sense of style and taste. If, therefore, the characteristic features of one designer suit you – it can be a good choice!
• Meet the designers (or call them to start with). The initial contact with the architect, then the process of designing and later arranging a house or apartment usually lasts longer than you initially anticipate – a few months, sometimes much longer – and depends on the size of the project, which the architect deals with. It will be different in the case of one room, and different in the case of the whole house project. The architect or the interior designer person must get along with you. You must feel that they understand your visions, listen to your expectations and that you are able to speak plainly about your own ideas. Trust is very important.
• Always sign contracts that clearly define the scope of the project, the number and type of amendments and changes you have the right to make during the project, additional benefits that you can expect. This will let you avoid any misunderstandings.
• Do not make your decision based solely on price. It is not worth choosing the cheapest offer. It is better to choose a professional who you liked the most (even if it is not cheap) but to limit, for example, the scope of his work. You can opt out of expensive photorealistic visualizations, or, for example, limit the number of rooms to be done to the most important ones for you.
Working on your own
If you decide to work alone on the interior of your flat, but you have some doubts – sometimes you only need advice from an experienced designer, thanks to which you will make sure that your ideas and decisions are appropriate to the space being developed. This kind of professional advice will be much cheaper than the price of the whole project, but it will help to avoid later mistakes.