Interior designers and decorators are not given enough credit for their work. What many clients don’t realise is that you don’t just ensure the fluidity of a design but you also provide connections between clients, contractors and suppliers.
Like many professions today, a lot of unrealistic expectations are placed on interior designers and decorators. Homeowners usually have a vivid idea of what they want their homes to look like but, most of the time, they struggle to express their preferences effectively.
A kitchen remodel can turn into a big project, therefore, communication is key to a successful execution. As a professional, you need to ensure you manage and meet your client's expectations as best you can.
Here are common questions designers ask their clients before designing their kitchen remodel:
Why do you want to remodel your kitchen? Does the client want a more spacious kitchen? Is there a baby on the way? Is an elderly parent moving in? Does the client want to improve the resale price of their home? Such factors will influence the design of the kitchen and give you room to suggest helpful ideas.
If a client doesn't really know why they want to remodel their kitchen, you will have to find out more about their passions, interests and preferred style choices to ensure you design a kitchen that suits their lifestyle.
How much money are you willing to spend?
This question is very important as it will help you determine whether the project is worth your time or not. Remodeling a kitchen can be a costly affair for your client so make sure they are aware of all the hidden costs that may pop up as well as the fees for your services. Once you have an idea of how much your client is willing to spend, you can manage their expectations better or suggest budget changes.
How will you be financing your project?
Some clients may be relying on financing that isn’t approved yet - this could be disastrous for you if they end up withholding payment from you. A lot of projects fall through due to money issues so make sure your client has enough money to pay for the entire project before you start designing their new and improved kitchen.
Who is involved in making decisions for this project?
If there is more than one person involved in making decisions for the project, make sure they are all present before you make any decisions or provide any quotes. This will prevent any unnecessary correspondence, future disagreements and changes.
What is your prefered timeline for the service?
Manage your client’s expectations when it comes to the timeline of their project. You don’t want your client to expect plans a day after they brief you on what they want.
What type of kitchen do you have in mind?
Through pictures, blogs and even Pinterest, the client can describe what they want their kitchen to look like. Once you know what their expectations are, you can advise them on what they can afford.
Find out how much your client knows about design options and materials so that you can see where you can educate them on the most effective way to remodel their kitchen. Whether it be suggesting a large island in the middle of the kitchen for hosting purposes or to provide a place for their kids to do their homework, or an open plan design to open up a small space, they will value your input. At the end of the day, your job is to make the kitchen as functional and beautiful as possible for your client.
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