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What to Expect to Pay for Interior Design & Decoration Services


One of the first questions every Interior Designer or Decorator is asked: “What do you charge?”

Followed-up with: “How do you work?”

These are of course valid questions, and, because an informed client is a good client, I’ll answer them for you as best I can – only in terms of how we operate at Earthborne By Design (every designer does things a bit differently).  A word of advice though – DON’T JUST THINK OF COST – THINK OF VALUE!

Billing and Design Fees

With the exception of a Colour Consultation i.e. choosing paint colours for interiors or exteriors, or One Time Design Consultation – checking over plans and selections you have already made etc, the Initial Consultation is free-of-charge (FOC).

Because a home is such a personal space, we believe it only fair to offer you an opportunity to meet with us in person to gauge if we would be the best ‘fit’ for your requirements, and also, so that we can ascertain whether we are able to deliver on your expectation.

Once we have established that we will work together, the following options are available:

  • Flat fee, based on a percentage of 14% of the total project value, with a minimum Engagement Fee of $400.00, for the first project – whichever is greater.
    alternatively, on an hourly basis, at a rate of $90.00 per hour
  • Colour Consultations are charged at $180.00 for interiors and $180.00 for exteriors – if both are required at the same appointment the rate reduces to $300 for both interior and exterior.
  • One-time consultations can be accommodated fairly easily, and we welcome them! We charge $300.00 for a consultation in your home, and it is payable at the time of visit via EFT, EFTPOS or cash. I find that 1 ½ hours for a one- time consult works best and provides sufficient time to address design ideas
  • All wholesale / trade discounts we get from our suppliers, are passed on to you, which means your budget stretches a little further than it would if you had to pay full retail prices –

If we bill as a flat fee – billing occurs as we complete certain phases of the project – also called progress payments. These phases often overlap, so it’s billed at point of substantial completion, and payable immediately.

We require a portion of the fee (Engagement Fee), up front, to start and get things rolling. That fee is used as a retainer and will be applied to your final instalment.

If billing hourly – we bill twice a month, on or after the 15th day and at the end of the month. With hourly billing – includes time spent on design concepts, CAD drawings, sourcing products, or visiting a job site or suppliers.

Because time is finite, we cannot take on every project that’s presented to us. If we cannot take on your project, or I feel your situation could be better handled by someone else, I may be able to refer you to another suitable  designer affiliated with Queensland Interior Decorators Association (The IDA).

The Agreement

After our initial meeting, we prepare a Scope of Works/Services Agreement, where we outline the services you are requesting, timelines, and detail the payment schedule.

Upon receipt of the signed agreement – either in person or via e-mail with a digital signature – and make your first payment, we’ll get started.

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