#interior design business
Home Based Business Ideas – Interior Designer
Interior designers are typically licensed, degreed professionals who decorate homes, offices and entire buildings. They juggle environmental, legal and aesthetic concerns in conceptualizing their plans. Interior decorators, who may or may not need professional licenses or as much formal education, often focus on the finishing touches, such as furniture, curtains and color. Both can build a home business but with different salary and job-scope expectations.
Pros of an Interior Designer Home Business
- It’s a viable artistic outlet.
- It can attract a wealthy clientele. Fees can range between $60 and $300 an hour.
- The hours are flexible.
- A job well done creates positive word of mouth, which is essential for building your business.
- Finding discounted goods can create greater profit for you and lower prices for your clients. But that puts a premium on building solid relationships with suppliers.
Cons of an Interior Design and Decorating Home Business
- Picky clients can be trying.
- Bookkeeping and working with manufacturers and retailers to secure fabrics, furniture and artwork can be time-consuming.
- It’s somewhat difficult to generate business at first. Licensed interior designers can build trust through internships and junior positions at a firm.
- The non-artistic aspects of decorating, such as adhering to building-code specifications, can sometimes slow a project.
What You Need to Get Started as an Interior Designer
- For interior design, you’ll need a four-year interior design degree from a college or university that has been accredited by the Council for Interior Design Accreditation. and later, depending on the state, a license. Passing the National Council for Interior Design Qualification test is a must for licensing. An internship, followed by a junior position at a design firm, are beneficial for gaining initial experience.
- Good taste, an eye for spatial relationships and an entrepreneurial spirit are essential, as is an understanding of styles, fabrics and other materials.
- Experience with computer-aided design (CAD) programs is also recommended, particularly for interior designers.
- You must establish yourself as a legitimate enterprise. Business cards and a website with 15 to 20 before-and-after shots can serve as an interior design portfolio.
- Fellowship with a professional organization such as the American Society of Interior Designers or Certified Interior Decorators International can help you network and grow.
- Learn to sketch. Prospects are often wowed by an impromptu sketch of what a detail or the big picture could look like.
- A sense of personal style in the way you dress and act. If you don’t look well put together, who will believe your design aesthetic will?
Interior Designer: Real Life Example
“Painted House” and “Facelift” TV host Debbie Travis, sometimes called the Martha Stewart of Canada, had a very humble start in the decorating business. She bought an old Victorian house in her adopted hometown of Montreal and overhauled it, according to her bio on the “Painted House” website. She soon began receiving commissions to decorate department stores and other public venues, and her model looks soon led her to television.
This article is part of the 7 Home Based Home Improvement Businesses collection. Use the link to access other home-based businesses in this collection.
LifeWire, a part of The New York Times Company, provides original and syndicated online lifestyle content. Ron Dicker is a New York-based freelance writer who covered sports for the New York Times from 1996 to 2005.
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