Hiring an Interior Designer

Here at Tumo, we want to make sure that our clients understand the important details before they call us (or any designer) to schedule their first consultation. Below are a few pointers to know before you hire a designer or consider hiring a designer for your project(s):

Due Diligence

Interior Designers are all different. Try not to just settle with one designer that has the most appealing images. It’s a relationship and your designer has every right to not want to do business with you, just as you have a right to not want to do business with the designer. Chemistry is not just for love relationships, but business ones as well.

Budget Budget Budget

Try not to call a designer unless you know exactly what you want to spend. A budget is the most important thing when hiring a designer, and some clients we encounter say “I don’t have one” or “I don’t know.” It’s also a disappointment to turn away a client who does not have a budget or does not know what they have to spend on their project. Your designer might have to turn you away, or have you call back when you do have a budget set. Just as we need to know our stuff, you need to know how much you want to spend. If you don’t, consult your finances, talk to an accountant. Do what you need to do to know how much you are willing to spend on a designer and your project (ie. Everything)


I can’t stress this enough. Communication is the absolute key to the success of your project. If you are married or have a life partner both of you should not be making decisions as there can be a difference of opinion, designate one of you to make decisions and fight about it later. Your designer most likely has years of experience under their belt, they’ve likely dealt with a large number of clients and are pretty good at communication by this point. When we have had issues, it has typically been from the client’s end. So just speak up, and be in communication and you should be fine.

The Contract

You are more than welcome to ask your designer for a blank copy of a contract before you sign it, we encourage it. You should also read every word, and if you don’t understand something consult with a lawyer. You should adhere to the contract the full demeanor of the project and your designer has the right to terminate the contract if you are in breach of any part of it. Don’t take offense, it’s just business. The designer is also bound by the same contract, so you knowing the contract just as much as the designer does helps you with any issues that arise from the project should that happen.

Try not to be Controlling

Your designer is there for a reason. You hired them because they have a skill you don’t possess, and if you do and just need a designer to help, still keep in mind that they are there to help you. If your designer suggest something to go in your space, you are more than welcome to say you don’t like it. But back up what you say with the reason you don’t like it. Try to not just say “I don’t like it, and I don’t know what I want” because your designer is just that. They are hired to design your space. If you don’t know what you want, ask your designer to provide you with a drawing, visual, or a consult before hand to help you decide.

Expect Delays

It is extremely rare that everything goes perfectly. Nothing is perfect in this world, so you should be expecting some delay with your project. 99.9% of the time, these delays are not caused by either you or the designer, so don’t yell at them for a delay from the cabinet company. The designer is your advocate. They’re fighting for you, not against you. These are our ideas on the most important things to know before hiring your designer. If you are looking to hire one, keep these in mind and do your homework. Together we can make your house a home.