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Free Interior Design Consultation: What to Expect and How to Prepare

By Mikael Short
February 22, 2022

An interior designer can help you to envision and plan for your home remodel or renovation, and it all starts with an initial interior design consultation.

At this first meeting, your designer will ask you questions about the vision and scope of your project. The consult is also a way for you to see if the designer is a good fit for your project.

When you first meet with an interior designer, we recommend taking a few simple steps to ensure your design consultation will be efficient and effective in putting a blueprint together for your home redesign project.

expert interior design services - your design can be free!

What is an Interior Design Consultation?

woman on a video call

An interior design consultation is the first meeting you have with an interior designer so they can get to know you and your redesign plans better. You also get to know your designer’s experience as well. They can be in person or over a virtual meeting.

In the initial consultation, your interior designer will ask you about your desired style and aesthetic, your budget, your project timeline, and what functionality you want to keep or change about your home. The point is to get a general idea of the project in order to set up a quote to achieve your redesign goals with that particular designer.

With Vevano Home, one of our expert interior designers will meet with you for 30 minutes in a virtual design consultation. They will discuss the scope and needs of your project so they can put together a quote to put your plan into action through high-end design services.

What is the Interior Design Consultation Fee?

Interior designers use a variety of different pricing structures, either charging per hour or a flat rate. The same may be said for their design consultation fees. The average range for an interior design consultation is about $150 to $200, though it could be more or less depending on their experience.

With Vevano Home, your design consultation is free! We don’t charge a fee for the initial consultation. Since your design consultation will be done virtually, there’s much more flexibility in scheduling and you don’t have to worry about paying a travel fee to bring your interior designer to your home.

How to Prepare For Your Consultation

interior designers pairing swatches together

To make sure you’re prepared with the information and resources that will help your designer better understand your redesign project, here’s what Vevano Home designers recommend you prepare before your design consultation:

1. Inspiration Photos & Mood Boards

Look through home magazines or websites and collect images of what your preferred design style is so you can show your designer how you’d love your home to look and function, whether that’s your kitchen, bathroom, or other space. This helps your designer get a feel for your personal aesthetic.

A mood board would also be an effective way to compile different visuals to create the aesthetic you want, from colors, materials, furniture, art, appliances, etc.

2. Photos of the Space

To give the designer a lay of the land, you could provide photographs of the area you wish to redesign. Here are some tips to take photos that clearly display the room you’re remodeling:

  • Utilize natural light as much as possible.
  • Turn on the lights behind where the camera will be, so the light isn’t in the camera’s view but still provides lighting to the room. Avoid turning on ceiling lights in the camera frame to prevent glare.
  • Level the camera at belly-button height to capture the most accurate dimensions of the space and features.
  • Stand in a corner of the room that gives you the best vantage point, or where you can see the most features clearly.
  • Straighten the lines of the room up with your camera so everything looks straight and level, like the floor, cabinets, or countertops. If your phone or camera has a grid function to help line things up straight, use it.
  • Get a picture from each side of the room, from the same level, to give a rounded view of the room.

Alternatively, you could show your interior designer your home via the virtual call, but that’s not required. Photos would be preferred by most designers.

3. Basic Measurements

Even the most basic measurements are nice to have when first discussing your remodel with an interior designer. Knowing the dimensions—a crucial piece of planning your remodel—will help you and your designer to know what kind of space is available.

All you need is a measuring tape or app, paper, a pencil/pen, and a camera/smartphone.

Here’s how to easily measure the room you’re seeking to redesign. If you’re remodeling your kitchen or bathroom, here’s a guide to measure your cabinets as well.

Note: The dimensions do not need to be exact for your initial design consultation, though a basic idea of measurements is helpful.

All Vevano Home designers need to create a personalized rendering of what your remodel will look like are pictures and a quick sketch with basic dimensions written in.

4. Budget

Your interior designer will also want to have a general idea of what your budget is for the redesign. You don’t need to have specific numbers in mind yet. However, having a number that you don’t want to go over will be helpful for them to know the limits of your budget.

Do some research on how much renovations or remodels cost so you know what to expect, whether it’s a low-cost renovation or a large-budget remodel.

5. Ideal Timeline

What is your desired timeline to complete your remodel? Your interior designer will also want to have an idea of when you plan to remodel and how quickly you want to get it done.

With these resources and documentation in hand, your interior design consultation will go much smoother by providing your designer with the most applicable information needed for your redesign.

What to Expect in Your Design Consultation

woman working on a laptop with paint swatches

During your initial design consultation, your interior designer will learn the scope of the project, discussing your budget, timeline, and style. They will ask about what products you may be looking to purchase, such as new flooring, cabinets, lighting, sinks, hardware, etc.

It will also be assessed if any intensive changes are needed to accomplish your redesign (such as plumbing, electric, knocking down walls, etc).

Interior Design Consultation Questions Your Designer Might Ask:

  • When are you looking to do your remodel or renovation? What is your timeline?
  • What kind of style(s) or aesthetic do you like most?
  • What colors do you like and want to feature in your redesign?
  • What materials and finishes do you like for sinks, countertops, floors, or hardware?
  • What appliances or plumbing features do you want to replace or purchase?
  • Do you want to change the orientation of your existing features?
  • What kind of functionality do you want in the room?
  • What is your budget? How much are you willing to spend?

Based on the inspiration photos, mood board, or other things you share in the initial consultation, the interior designer will be able to understand and put into words what your personal style is and what you want to achieve with your redesign.

They may share suggestions and tips based on what you share with them and what your questions and concerns are in that initial conversation.

The designer will also provide a walkthrough of the design process and what to expect as well as the pricing structure.

Though the designer won’t be able to provide an exact quote during the initial meeting, once they understand the full scope of your project, they will send you a quote after your consultation.

After the Consultation

vevano home design services pricing model

After the consultation, the designer will put together and send you the exact quote for the cost of the remodel, including the retainer fee.

Retainer fees will range depending on the experience of the designer and may be priced per hour or with a flat rate per room. It will also depend on how extensive your redesign project is and where you live since big cities will carry a heftier cost than more suburban or rural areas.

With Vevano Home, interior design retainers often start at $900 per room, although it may be higher depending on the scope and extent of the project.

Most Vevano projects—even major kitchen remodels and other renovations—average around $1200 (compared to the average $5,500 cost of working with a designer!).

Ultimately, though, your design can be free when you purchase products through Vevano Home! The money spent on the retainer is applied to products purchased through Vevano Home designers. So, think of the upfront cost of the retainer as a deposit or credit toward products purchased for your project.

In a way, this could make your design services complimentary when you work with Vevano Home designers!

Once the retainer is paid, the designer begins working on the redesign project, providing concept boards, renderings, and product samples until you are happy with the blueprints to bring your renovation into reality.

From there, communication moving forward is based on what works best for you, your schedule, and who you have helping you with your redesign.

What to Expect When You Work with Vevano Home Interior Designers

Here’s what you get when you choose to work with Vevano Home for your redesign project:

  1. Your initial design consultation is free (when initial design consultations are usually a couple hundred dollars)!
  2. You get a team of three designers working together on your project. Each design customer gets a lead designer, a project coordinator, and a 3D drafter.
  3. You’ll receive a comprehensive, personalized design packet that includes:
    • Concept boards
    • 3D renderings
    • Floor plans & elevations (architectural drawings of your redesign plans)
    • List of recommended products and materials to match your style & vision
    • Optional product samples to physically see and touch a product before purchase to check quality
  4. Vevano Designers can provide multiple 3D renderings to help you to visualize the space with various options to help you narrow down what you truly want if you’re struggling to decide.
  5. Your Vevano Home interior designer can help you find and order all the products for your project. This includes products from the Vevano website as well as products that are exclusive to designers and trade rooms.
  6. The retainer fee is applied to product purchases, so if you spend more on products than the cost of the retainer, then your design services are free!
  7. Your Vevano Home design team can communicate and coordinate with your contractors, project managers, or yourself during the installation process to ensure that the design is executed and installed the way it was planned. In terms of communication, your designer will be able to jump on Zoom calls as necessary and will provide emails with any updates.

Ready to Work with an Interior Designer to See your Vision Through?

Vevano design services concept board

Vevano Home would be delighted to help you with your redesign by offering high-end, customized design services that are personalized to your style and needs.