Contractor vs Interior Designer: What’s Best for You?
Renovating your home can be an ordeal if bad decisions and rookie mistakes are made by the homeowner. To avoid such mishaps, it’s always a good choice to hire a contractor or interior designer to provide you with professional advice and assistance, especially so for first-time homeowners!
However, this begs the question of whether one should hire a contractor or an interior designer. Does this sound familiar? Well, fret not – we’re here to help you with these nuances!
Contractors are full-fledged professionals who specialise in providing architectural and structural knowledge and services. They are straightforward service providers with a world of expertise in creating functional spaces. However, with that being said, contractors generally only focus on the execution of the construction phase and renovation works, having little to no involvement in the aesthetic aspect of the project. In layman terms, contractors provide services as their name suggests – no-frills contract work.
Contractors conduct works based on the technical drawings and information they have been provided with, only stepping in when a design is structurally or architecturally unsound. However, aspects such as tiling styles and selection of tiles are generally included in the list of services of a contractor.
An important condition to take note of, is the fact that a contractor may have to hire other subcontractors to complete works on behalf of the main contractor. Electricians, carpenters and plumbers may have to be sourced separately in such cases.
But- you should not expect a contractor to walk you through furniture or paint selection, as opposed to how an interior designer would.
Interior designers are professional service providers playing multiple roles in a design project. They act as a consultant, drafter, 3D renderer and project manager – all at once. Interior designers are artists trained in developing creative concepts and designs to help you achieve that dream home you’ve always wanted. One could say that an interior designer is a one-stop service for all your renovation needs.
However, with such appealing elements come a heftier price tag, if you were to hire an interior designer over a contractor. To many homeowners, a peace of mind and reassurance are two of the key conditions that are included in that hefty price tag, and this is especially helpful for homeowners with little experience in renovation works and procedures.
How Should I Decide?
Budget – The most important aspect to consider is your budget. Ultimately, hiring a contractor is more economical if you intend to undergo minor, clear-cut renovation works. However, we strongly suggest you to hire an interior designer for a full overhaul of your home.
Time Management – Interior designers usually always require a lot more time to complete a project. This is due to the nature of an interior designer’s job scope, which includes project planning and preparation of technical drawings and renderings.
Risk Factor – The scale of the project is proportional to how you should assess the risks of hiring a contractor or interior designer. Large-scale projects may be too advanced for the ordinary homeowner to handle, so it’s best to hire a reliable interior designer to provide you with a peace of mind, handling the project from start to end.
Truthfully, there are pros and cons when it comes to hiring either a contractor or an interior designer. But – here are some factors for you to put into consideration, before deciding.
Hire a contractor, if:
- You have technical drawings and information ready
- You require only minor and straightforward works
- You are well-versed in sourcing specific contractors for specific works
- You have a design in mind
- You have materials, furniture and a colour theme in mind
- You are looking for a budget-friendly option
Hire an interior designer, if:
- You require professional drafting services
- You require major renovation works or a full overhaul of your home
- You want a worry-free and robust renovation process
- You do not have a design in mind
- You are willing to spend more on renovation
We hope this guide has been useful in helping you decide on a contractor or interior designer! We strongly suggest you to research on the level of service you require. Generally speaking, first-time homeowners should always opt for the safer albeit costlier choice of hiring an interior designer. With that said, happy hunting!