Get Quotes from Top Interior Designers in Phoenix, AZ

Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Interior Designer in Phoenix

Whether you are a creative and fashion-forward thinker or your goal is simply to have a beautiful home with a well-thought-out design, you will find the assistance of an interior designer to be incredibly invaluable. By working with these experts, you will be able to

  • Balance form and function for your home or office space,
  • Optimize the expression of your style,
  • Tap into their vast network to help with other home improvement installations, and
  • Achieve your preferred design without much burden on your wallet.

But before you choose anyone claiming to be an interior designer in Phoenix, it is advisable to find out if the contractor is qualified by making the following inquiries:

Are You Registered or Certified to Practice as an Interior Designer in Phoenix?

There are no licensing or registration requirements for interior designers to practice in Arizona. However, professional interior designers in Phoenix are expected to have some formal education in Interior Design to distinguish them from anyone claiming to be a designer.

In Arizona, interior designers must also obtain an architect's certification before doing structural work. This ensures that safety regulations, legislation, and construction requirements are followed.

There is no requirement for national certification to practice interior design in Arizona. However, interior designers who take the initiative to obtain this certification tend to have more exposure, as they are likely more exposed to high-end clientele.

The Council for Interior Design Qualification (CIDQ) is where one obtains the National Council for Interior Design Qualification (NCIDQ) accreditation. To receive this certification, the applicant must finish a bachelor's degree program and have two years of work experience. The organization also permits those with lower-level degrees to obtain certification as long as these candidates have at least two to three years of work experience to complement their degrees.

Please be aware that the first application price for this exam is $225. After accepting the application, the candidate must sign up for each exam section separately. These are the exam sections:

  • Interior Design Fundamentals Exam (IDFX)
  • Interior Design Professional Exam (IDPX)
  • Practicum Exam (PRAC)

Note that there is a $295 registration fee for the IDFX, a $350 registration fee for the IDPX, and a $455 registration fee for the PRAC. The applicant will receive NCIDQ certification after completing all three exam portions. The $75 annual cost for maintaining this accreditation is also necessary.

How Much Do You Charge Compared to Other Interior Designers in Phoenix?

When Phoenix interior designers bill for their services, they frequently use several price schemes. These consist of:

  • Hourly Fee Structure: With this structure, the interior designer will bill you hourly for the time they spend working on your project. This kind of price structure is typically suggested for modestly sized projects. However, you might need to pay a fee before the interior designer starts working on your project.
  • Flat Rate Fee Structure: in this arrangement, the interior designer charges you a set amount in exchange for specific services or responsibilities, such as design evaluations or reviews.
  • Percentage Fee Structure: A portion of the overall cost of your home restoration project, which typically varies from 10 percent to 25 percent, is what the interior designer will charge you under this fee structure. The benefit of this pricing structure is that, in most cases, there are no up-front costs, and you can easily predict how much the interior designer's services would cost. On the other hand, dishonest interior designers might use this framework to recommend or buy only pricey goods to raise the overall cost of your project and, as a result, their overall fee.

Always ask what pricing structure your prospective interior designer intends to use for the job, and ensure it suits the fee structure. Be aware that the price of hiring an interior designer in Phoenix is frequently influenced by elements like the size of the space that needs decorating and the interior designer's reputation.

Despite this, it is a good idea to request and compare estimates from at least three local interior designers before choosing one to work with. By doing this, you can identify exorbitant prices and other dubious practices.

Interior designers in Phoenix earn an average annual wage of $53,690. The list below provides the average hourly wages of these professionals compared with the average hourly wages of interior designers across the rest of Arizona as well as several other locations in the United States:

Phoenix Interior Designers Average Hourly Wage
Tucson Interior Designers Average Hourly Wage
Scottdale Interior Designers Average Hourly Wage
Mesa Interior Designers Average Hourly Wage
New York City Interior Designers Average Hourly Wage
Chicago Interior Designers Average Hourly Wage
Houston Interior Designers Average Hourly Wage
Los Angeles Interior Designers Average Hourly Wage
Philadelphia Interior Designers Average Hourly Wage
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

What Kind of Interior Design Services Do You Offer?

To ensure that you get the best quality and value for your money, learning what services an interior designer offers is essential. Along with more specialized services like sustainable interior design, interior restorations, and event and holiday décor, these services encompass residential and commercial interior design.

It should be noted that many homeowners frequently conflate the phrase "interior decorator" with "interior designer." Although both categories of professions provide comparable services, there are still some slight but important differences between them.

To improve the look and functionality of living spaces, interior designers typically have more formal education than interior decorators. They also collaborate closely with architects and general contractors. On the other hand, interior decorators often concentrate mostly on aesthetics and are not involved in structural planning or restoration when it comes to home remodeling projects.

It is a good idea to find out the cost of these services after making sure that your preferred interior designer's area of specialization corresponds to the nature and scope of your project. Below are price ranges for several fee structures for interior design services in Phoenix.

Residential interior design services cost estimates

Hourly rate fee structure
$86.39 - $98.05 per hour
Square footage fee structure
$2.25 – $8.25 per square foot
Percentage fee structure
10% - 15% of construction cost
Percentage fee structure
14% - 34.50% of furnishings cost

Commercial interior design services cost estimates

Hourly rate fee structure
$61 - $170 per hour
Square footage fee structure
$9.76 - $11.83 per square foot
Percentage fee structure
10% - 15% of construction cost

What is Your Favorite Interior Design Style?

It is typical to clearly understand your desired interior design style or aesthetic when trying to remodel your home or build a new living space. To avoid having a home that makes you feel utterly miserable, it is always a good idea to ensure that your interior designer has the necessary knowledge to bring your desired style to life.

Likewise, it is advisable to look over their portfolio and ensure that the styles and designs they use meet your vision for your living space when you want to work with an interior designer recognized for a specific style or design.

Some popular design styles favored by homeowners in Phoenix include:

  • Art Deco
  • Bohemian
  • Coastal
  • Contemporary
  • Eclectic
  • Glam
  • Minimalist
  • Modern Farmhouse
  • Organic Modern
  • Rustic
  • Scandinavian
  • Shabby Chic
  • Traditional
  • Transitional

Another great option, if you are not too keen on a specific interior design theme for your house, is to work with your interior designer to develop a distinctive style that complements your age and personality. Among the city's many age groups, some of the more popular interior design trends include:

  • Baby Boomers/Generation X: This group feels at home with the Traditional and Rustic styles.
  • Millennials/Generation Y: This group prefers Contemporary, Minimalist, and Industrial styles.
  • Gen Z: Glam, Rustic, and Eclectic styles usually appeal to people of this age.

Can You Provide References from People You Have Served in Phoenix?

When looking for qualified interior designers to manage your home remodeling project, recommendations from friends, family, or online directories maintained by organizations like the American Society of Interior Designers are typical.

Any interior designer in Phoenix, regardless of how you find them, should always be contacted for references from previous customers before you enter into any agreements with them. By doing this, you can verify their credibility and gain first-hand feedback on their designs, background, and work ethics.

In Phoenix, professional interior designers will be happy to share this information with you. They may even present you with a portfolio of their prior work that includes "before and after" images that show how their designs turned out. Be aware of interior designers who either can't or appear reluctant to give you up to three local references, as this is typically a symptom of inadequate services and fraud on the designer's part.

Lastly, you should think about searching for your desired interior designer on websites like Google Reviews and the Better Business Bureau. By doing so, you can examine their complaint history and, if any, the type of complaints that have been made against them.

How Do You Structure Your Interior Design Projects?

How your intended interior designer organizes and structures their work is crucial to consider while looking for competent interior designers for your home design and remodeling in Phoenix. This gives you a sense of what to expect from the design process and helps you understand how interior designers organize their time.

This is crucial because it enables you to ensure that any specific project milestones you may have, such as proposed move-in dates or visits from friends and family, are considered when creating the interior designer's project timeline.

The steps in a typical interior design process are as follows:

  • Discovery: This entails determining the specific requirements and preferences of the customer, looking at pictures of inspiration, and talking about the home's overall floor layout.
  • Inspiration: Using inspiration, the interior designer and their design team now develop a concept statement for each area that will serve as the project's overarching compass.
  • Design: In this instance, the client is given the interior designer's fully developed design concepts. This step could involve follow-up presentations and design tweaks to accommodate the client's requirements or needs until a final design is accepted.
  • Procurement: To put the agreed-upon concept into action, the interior designer must procure the necessary furniture, fittings, and accessories.
  • Installation: In this stage, the intended home or living space's purchased furniture, fixtures, and accessories are installed. This may require one to five days or even longer, depending on the project's scale.
  • The Big Reveal: The big reveal occurs at the end of the interior design process when the client is shown the finished product by the interior designer.

What Builders, Architects, or Contractors Do You Work With?

An interior designer may collaborate with architects, builders, or general contractors, or they may act as the primary contractor, hiring carpenters, flooring specialists, and other subcontractors, depending on the specifics of the project. In cases where your interior designer is working with other subcontractors, it's crucial to confirm that they are appropriately licensed and insured for their work in addition to the cost of these professionals.

Workers in the building trades had 57,780 work-related injuries in 2020, according to the United States Bureau of Labor Statistics. You can be held accountable for these injuries if the contractors you hired to work with your interior designer lack insurance. As a result, you should check to see if each of these subcontractors has general liability insurance sufficient for your project's scale.

Keep in mind that employers in Arizona are required by law to provide their employees with workers' compensation insurance. Additionally, be sure that these contractors have additional insurance, such as general liability, commercial property insurance, and commercial auto insurance.

It is important to always ask your interior designer and subcontractors for confirmation of insurance. Before you finish any hiring agreements with them, you can contact the insurance company that issued it to confirm it.

How to File a Complaint Against a Bad Interior Designer in Phoenix

You can file complaints to the Office of the Attorney General of Arizona's Consumer Protection division about subpar interior designers in Phoenix.

Local news network, Arizona Family, in March 2022, reported a case in which a homeowner lost $150,000 to a phony contractor who did subpar work and supplied only $70,000 in labor and materials over five months just outside of Phoenix.

Common interior design scams typically include con artists and unreliable interior designers utilizing a variety of strategies to deceive unwary homeowners and steal their money. The following are some common strategies employed by these people:

  • Making unreasonable demands for early deposits or retainers
  • Providing seemingly low-cost estimates to win the homeowner's trust
  • Using subpar furniture and materials while charging exorbitant costs
  • Making off with deposits and leaving the work unfinished or incomplete

When looking for interior designers in Phoenix, take the following precautions to safeguard yourself from any scammers:

  • Do not heed door-to-door solicitations. Instead, obtain recommendations for interior designers in the area from reliable sources. Friends, family members, reputable real estate agents, or internet directories published by the Better Business Bureau and the American Society of Interior Designers can be references.
  • Always check the certification status of the interior designer you want to hire.
  • Do not hesitate to get a second opinion before beginning big renovation initiatives.
  • Verify the interior designer's physical address is in the area.
  • Be aware of interior designers who cannot give you up to three local references that you may check.
  • Make sure a written contract covering the work is there. This contract should contain crucial information, including the interior designer's contact details, an explanation of the interior design services to be provided, the project cost, a payment schedule, and a procedure for accommodating additional services.
  • Make sure to read and comprehend any paperwork that is presented to you before you sign it.
  • Avoid hiring interior designers who request substantial deposits up ahead and postpone paying the project's total cost until it is finished. Never pay a deposit greater than 20 to 30 percent of the project's expected total cost.
  • Follow the progress of your project carefully.

You can contact the Arizona Attorney General's Office at (602) 542-5763 to lodge an online consumer complaint.

Even while this office may take such actions to address your complaint, there is no guarantee that you will get any compensation. However, you can file a case against the interior designer in Phoenix Municipal Court to take private legal action to get some compensation.

It is important that you consult with a lawyer before filing a claim or carrying out any other court-related actions. You can get referrals for seasoned lawyers in Phoenix by visiting the Maricopa County Bar Association's website for its Lawyer Referral Service.