FAQ 2017-04-23T17:28:04+00:00

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

I understand that there are many questions surrounding your property refurbishment.  Here, I’ve tried to answer a few common questions that come up time and time again.  Please contact me if you have any other queries that need answering.

Do you take on small properties as well as large ones?

Yes indeed! Homes come in all shapes and sizes; I take on whatever is needed and whatever I have the time for. Please email me if you would like me to quote for your project.

 

Is there a best time of year to do building work?

Habit says that summer is better but only because of Christmas and the weather.  I personally prefer to start projects in January when the new year is fresh and there is plenty of time to plan.

 

Do you take on commercial property work?

Yes indeed I do.  Although the bulk of my work is residential, both for developers and private owners, commercial work is undertaken when it is planned in advance with all the relevant professions attached – surveyors, architects, planning officers and conservation groups.

 

Is there a website I can find reliable builders?

There are a few places such as   www.trustmark.org.uk that give good advice and carry a list of reputable tradesmen for the UK. For the international community, you would need to look at your governments websites to see if such a site exists. 
However, these sites do not guarantee the work that you will receive.  Furthermore, many of these builders will be very busy and may not be the most competitively priced.  It is far better to use word of mouth in the first place and see the workmanship for yourself before you waste time making appointments and arranging quotes.

 

How do Interior Designers charge their fee?

This depends on the designer and how much work there is to do!  Some charge a project fee, some charge by the hour.  I do both, depending on what the work consists of.  Sourcing items (of furniture perhaps) is charged by the hour.  This is because it always varies on how long it can take and when the client gets round to making a decision! Building an extension or converting a loft space is project based because I know how much will be involved, the elements needed and how long things will take to order and install.  In this instance, a set fee is charged. Extras can be added on to project work and frequently are of course, but if you do your planning beforehand most items can be costed at the initial stage.

Do you have any recommendations for equipment for a new interior designer?

Yes indeed.  There are so many things that you can buy on the market to see if interior design is for you but I would start with a couple of books to see if it still grabs your attention. Head over to my Resources page so you can see a few titles that are available.  I also detail a few tools of the trade that you might want to look at as well as the equipment that I use onsite and my podcasting equipment.  I will be updating this list as I go along…

How do I know if I need an architect?

Most things with planning permission will need an architect, especially if you are converting loft space or basement space.However, basement companies often come with their own planning and architect departments.  There are also companies that charge by the hour rather than a whole project fee – a sort of ‘pay as you go’ service! See www.architect-yourhome.com.  Worth checking them out for smaller jobs.

Do I have a contract with you or the builders?

You will definitely get one from the builder as their contract is with you, the property owner and they are responsible to you for their work. My contract/agreement covers my fees and responsibilities which covers other suppliers such as the curtains and soft furnishings, carpets and other flooring.

How are you and the builders paid?

The builders receive an initial deposit to buy the preliminary equipment.  After that, they have a payment plan, which is part of their contract, detailing fortnightly payments to be made by bank transfer. The last payment is to be made at the end of the project when everything is completed and you are happy.I am paid either by an hourly rate (for small projects and sourcing furniture or accessories) or by a project fee (for larger projects over a few months).

Will I have to move out of home?

This depends on what work you are having done. If you are having any plastering completed, there will be plenty of dust. Even if you block off doorways, some will always get in.  This will be minimal but you should be aware of this. Be aware that noise will be an issue for you and your neighbours. Builders start at 07.30hrs – but will mostly be gone by 17.00hrs.  I would always advise moving out if you can.  I always pack furniture away and take them off site as well. Workmen will take longer if they have to move around furniture and your personal items will run the risk of being damaged if they stay onsite.

I want to redesign my house on a limited amount of money – where shall I start?

I personally would start with your budget. There is nothing more demoralising than drawing up plans and finding things to furnish your house with and THEN finding your budget doesn’t go anywhere near your plans.  If you have limited funds I would suggest starting in one room and making your way around the house, as and when funds come in. Magazines, for inspiration, are a good starting point for the look, feel and concept of your ideas.  But bear in mind that they often show expensive, designer products that may well incur additional delivery fees and include long lead times.

How can I choose the best paint colours for my home?

It really comes down to personal preference but first you should look at where the daylight comes into each room to start off with.  There is a science behind colour but the best way is to use your eyes and take your time when choosing. I’ve written a book on the subject to help you as this is such a common question that I get asked.

CONTACT US ABOUT YOUR PROJECT

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