Frequently Asked Questions
When should you contact a designer?
Your designer can help you from the very beginning of the planning through the competition of the construction and decoration. By involving an experienced certified designer at the beginning you will have more specific information to take to a contractor. This helps the contractor or the product suppliers to provide a more accurate cost estimate or bid.
Can a designer provide plans if you want to remove walls or add on to your house?
A professional designer will help put together the right team of professionals to execute your project. Developing the design direction is the first step. From there your designer will recommend that other professionals will need to provide the proper documents. If you are removing interior walls a structural engineer will be consulted. If you are adding to the house an engineer will be required and an architect may be brought in for a portion of the plans. In either case your professional designer can help determine the best course of action.
What is the difference between an Interior Designer and an Interior Decorator?
An Interior Designer is a professional that has had a formal education, and is concerned with designing functional and aesthetic interior spaces which address the flow of the space and serve the health, safety, and welfare of the public. A decorator specializes in the decorative elements of a space only. An education in the profession is not required, but decorators usually do not have the technical training the designer undergoes. An experienced designer also has knowledge of construction and current building codes. What's the bottom line? A technically trained and certified designer will provide a more comprehensive service, including detailed plans and specifications which may be required for permits, and can be utilized for bid comparison.
How long does it take to do a remodel?
First, it is important to keep in mind that every project is different. Secondly, it helps to understand that there are three steps to the remodeling process: the planning stage, the construction stage, and the furnishing stage.
Step One: The planning stage can consist of style direction and concept, design development, space planning, construction documents, and product selection among other things; it can range anywhere from three months to a year or longer depending on the extent of the project and how quickly the client can make decisions.
Step Two: The length of the construction stage will vary depending on the scope of the project specified by the client. However, typical kitchen or bath renovations can start at about 10–12 weeks, while a more extensive project can take as long as six months to a year.
Step Three: Furnishing the new space is the final step. It is important to consider how the space will be furnished. Will you use existing furniture or purchase new? Many clients initially plan to use existing furniture but after the construction portion of the project is complete they realize the old furniture looks out of place. You may consider including new furniture in your overall budget.
What happens during the first consultation?
The first consultation is a phone conversation to determine the basic parameters of the project and discuss expectations of budget. Once it has been determined that the scope of the project and budget are realistic an in-home meeting is scheduled.
What happens during the in-home meeting?
This is an opportunity for the designer and client to get to know each other better and decide if there is a good match between the designer and client. The designer will see the space and discuss your thoughts about the project. The designer presents the process of developing the right design solution for your project. You will see a portfolio of completed projects and the design service options are presented for you to determine which design service is right for you.
Do you have the necessary resources and the ability to achieve the requirements you desire for your space?
This question is extremely important when considering your project. Your home will be torn apart and your life will be disrupted for an extended period of time. Are you prepared for the expense and the mess? There will be many questions that come up during your project. We are here to help. MAC Design will incorporate education, expertise, and experience to address every facet of the design process and construction phase. Additionally, you will be encouraged to ask as many questions as you can think of.
What if I only want a "little" design advice, like I see on the television shows?
MAC Design is a full service design firm. What does this mean? First, we begin a project with photographs and on-site measurements, followed by design concepts and scaled drawings. Then, taking into consideration everything we have spent discussing with the client, we then prepare and present an extensive proposal to meet those needs, which can include the purchase of products and materials. We do not give free estimates on materials or custom fabricated products, nor do we give free advice on colors or furnishings. Design-related television shows are for entertainment purposes only and do not portray the real business world of Interior Design. There is a considerable amount of time and energy that goes into each project, from researching products and materials, to developing resources to fine-tuning the design itself. Interior Designers are like any other professional, and they need to be compensated fairly for the hard work invested.
What is included in MAC Design's services?
Services can include as much or as little as each individual client and/or project requires. MAC Design has contracted with clients from the very beginning stages of a project to anywhere in-between. No matter if the project is large or small, our design team takes pride in every detail. For further information please visit the our Services page.
How does MAC Design charge for services?
Every project is different and design fees are based on the unique needs of each individual client and project. MAC Design offers design packages that range from basic design services to comprehensive assistance. For further information please visit the Our Process page.
How much will my project cost?
Once again, every project is different. You have some control over the product costs. Products vary in quality and price. Construction costs will depend on the extent of the work. Some project costs are influenced by current code requirements. Our experience has shown that the "average" kitchen or master bath project can range from about $80,000 to $300,000. For more information please visit the Our Process page. Many projects start with a given scope of work and develop into more as the project develops.