FAQs

What do you design?

· Extensions and renovations design
· New-construction plans
· Kitchens and bathrooms
· Furniture and accessories
· Space planning
· Custom cabinetry
· Fabrics and upholstery
· Floor coverings and rug design
· Wall coverings
· Window treatments
· Lighting design
· Gardens and outdoor areas
· Exterior facades

What is Full Design service?

Full Design Service = Design + Product Supply + Installation

This includes all the elements of design, sourcing, and purchasing, as well as liaising with the contractor and trades throughout the project, with regular consultation throughout the build and fit-out; providing advice on product installation.

We are able to provide this full service using our skills, experience, and in-depth knowledge of services such as plumbing, electrical and joinery, providing technical drawings and plans for tile formats, room layouts, cabinetry, and other product installation.

Most of us lead busy lives and have enough things that require our focus without the added pressure of the hundreds (sometimes thousands) of decisions and tasks relating to a home design project.

We believe our end-to-end, all encompassing service is the best way to deliver a coherent home design project, on time and on budget with your sanity intact!

How long does it take?

Design works need to be completed prior to any building work or fit-out commences.

The pre-construction design work usually takes between 2-4 months, longer if planning permission is required or it's the renovation of the whole of a large house. This includes concept design and detailed design with costings. Within this design time we also allow for client reviews and any revisions.

Then the purchasing and installation can take another 2-4 months. Kitchens and sofas for example are made to order and some fittings, like tiles, may come from abroad, so these items may take 3-4 months to arrive.

Ideally we need 4-8 months to ensure that all the designs are fully detailed out and agreed, and for specified items to be on site as required to keep the project progressing.

This may seem like a long time, but you will need time to consider the designs we provide and we'll need time to create the technical drawings and specifications for your build quotes. Designing 'on the fly' or during a build is a recipe for disaster. It slows the project and will most likely annoy your builder and trades, whilst adding time and cost.

How much will it cost?

As every project is different, we will meet with you and assess the scope of work, then determine the design fee accordingly. Design and specification is a flat design fee per project.

Estimates for the total cost for the interiors will be provided once we have an understanding of the scope and scale of your project.

In our experience, setting a hard and fast 'budget' for your project rarely pays off. It's impossible to accurately estimate what all the different elements of a project will actually cost until they have been defined, and until then no-one is in a position to set a spend limit? It's important to understand that the amount of structural work and the quality of finishes and furnishings can dramatically affect the cost.

Payment of our design fees is required 30% upon appointment, then 30% at concept design and the remaining 40% at detailed design stage.

If we are supplying items, payment is required 100% at the start of the purchasing phase (similar to if you were buying items from a shop).

How does purchasing and supply of items work?

All purchasing and execution for the interiors fittings and furnishings (i.e furniture, tile, lighting, fabrics and other design materials) goes through us. We are able to work in some of your existing pieces where necessary.

Your purchase of interior design items through us serves as payment for our services during the Purchasing and Execution Phase. We charge commercially reasonable prices whilst also passing on some savings to you. Where possible, we generally price between 10-20% below RRP.

In addition, our full-service interior design features to-the-trade and bespoke designed pieces purchased through Parker Grove which aren't available to the public.

Our agreement is that we set a realistic investment estimate together, then furnishings are purchased through Parker Grove. This is the business model we need to follow to make our flat fees functional as a business.

Why do you require full payment up front for purchases?

We require 100% deposit on all orders for many reasons. One of the main being that if, after placing an order, you decide you don’t want that sofa, we can assure you that we don’t want it either.

We’ve had clients go through tough times that pulled them away from the project. While it is completely understandable that someone dealing with a personal crisis can’t focus on the design project, the orders already set into motion cannot be paused or cancelled, which means balances will be due.

Those examples aside, there are benefits to paying 100% up front:

· It cuts paperwork in half (instead of billing for a deposit and final invoice).
· Since we do turn-key project installations (where we do one delivery after all of the orders are in at our warehouse), you would still be required to pay for items in full prior to receiving them anyway.
· Projects move more quickly this way, as it makes the entire order process more efficient and allows us to complete your project quicker, rather than waiting for stage payments.

Can you give me different options so I can decide what I want?

We do not offer options in design presentations, as we find that when we provide options, we end up with a very “vanilla” design. Meaning, everything has to be interchangeable, which is not how we develop layered, thoughtful, and detailed designs.

Our true value is in putting together the mix. Options greatly detract from that.

After spending time getting to know you and understanding what you want, we'll have a good idea of what you're after. As part of the service we provide a round of revisions at concept and detailed design phases to change out anything you don't like or add in anything extra you've thought of. The final decision is always yours and the process is very much a joint effort, with us providing guidance and doing the leg-work.

Do I need to move out while the work is done?

If you're having significant works like a whole home renovation or an extension, then we recommend you move out while works are ongoing.

Living in your home when building work is happening is very unpleasant for you and slows down the progress of the build.

If you're on site it is distracting for the builder and trades, and you most likely won't be able to stop yourself getting involved in things when you don't need to.

Remember, the builder may say they'll take 3 months, but then you've all the interior fit-out to complete too - tiling, kitchen, bathrooms, fitted joinery, bespoke items, etc - then the furniture and furnishings.

Based on our client's past project experience, we would recommend at least 6 months out of your home, longer if the project is a large scale whole home renovation.