So, how do you hire your designer? These are my recommendations on how to hire the right designer for you. One place you can search for a qualified designer is the NKBA website. http://www.nkba.org/ here is their link. Another would be to search the Internet for a qualified designer or company.
Most designers/companies have websites today. They show before and after of their work, and should have testimonial's from clients. Most list the services they provide and give a product list of things they carry. This is a good place to sort through the choices you might have in your area. Depending on your geographic location you might have several options. Others might only have a few.
Ok, now you have sorted through your options and have selected a few to talk with or visit their showrooms. If you’re meeting with an independent designer. Ask to see a portfolio. Any solid designer will have one put together. You should ask for client references as well. Call and talk with past clients. This is an important step. We buy from people we like and trust. Some independents will offer full services and others will only do designs, and then send you out to hire the people to implement those plans. Either way be sure to check references, they are important. They may have recommendations for whom to talk with as well.
These are a few questions I would ask those clients.
- Are you happy with the final project?
- Did you have problems? If so what were they? How were they handled?
- Is the designer/company timely in responding to questions?
- Did they work with a budget? How did they handle changes to the scope?
- Was the job site clean and protected?
- Who did you deal with on the project?
- Was there a schedule? How did it work? Did they keep you informed of changes?
- Was the design workable and did it meet your expectations?
- Were their subcontractors/employees courteous and were they easy to deal with?
- What are your services? How much do you charge?
- Who is in charge? Who is to be paid and by whom? Does everyone have insurance?
- Are they any warranty on products or craftsmanship?
- Can we see some projects either finished or in the works?
- Are you certified? How long have you been designing?
- Can we talk with clients? See a portfolio?
Some of the same questions from above should be asked of the company you are looking to hire. Here are few more I would ask if you’re hiring a design company or remodeling firm.
- How long have you been in business?
- How long have your subcontractors or employees been with you?
- Can we talk with past clients?
- Do you have a portfolio?
- Who is in charge of the project once the design and materials are selected?
- Who am I dealing with throughout the project?
- How are payments scheduled?
- Is a schedule done and who is in charge of scheduling?
- Are your designers certified? How long have they been designing?
- Do you have insurance?
I wish everyone a great new year!
Angie Keyes CKD