Home Decorating: DIY or Get a Pro?

September 25, 2014  |  Home Improvement, What to Do
Home Decorating: DIY or Get a Pro?

Should you decorate yourself or hire a professional to do it for you? This is the million dollar question when starting a home decorating project.

What to do when you are in a quest for a better, updated, more beautiful home? This is no laughing matter after all. We’re talking about time, money, efforts, and energy spent to make your lovely abode a home that reflects you and your choices.

So then, should you exercise full control over the home decorating project or just  let go and hand over the rein to a professional and allow another person to craft his or her magic to reflect your personality and style?

Or perhaps you are the collaborative type who is happy to meet halfway and apply the ideas of an interior designer?

Let us delve deeper into your home decorating adventure. Which group of homeowners do you fall into?



Do It Yourself: The Good Side

Number one pro aspect of a DIY is definitely not having to pay someone else to decorate your home.

Ah, the freedom of using funds for decors, furnishings, and accents without having to cost cut for a professional fee. You can also do the project in stages with no time pressure of a professional fee ticking. You are also not pressured as to how much development is going on in the decorating project. You can sprint or just walk, lagging behind schedule without anyone hammering you with time frame and timeline activities. You have full control of every detail and execution, and are accountable.

And what a liberating feeling to see results that 100% reflect your personal taste and take credit for all of them! This is good news for those who love throwing parties and talking about their home.

Going the DIY route would depend on your strengths. “If you know what you like and you know what makes you tick, you’ll love everything you choose,” says interior designer Alana Homesley of Woodland Hills, California.

Do It Yourself: The Down Side

You could mess up and never forgive yourself enough to live a peaceful life.

Just kidding…it could happen but it won’t, so don’t worry because you will learn to live and like the  home you have no matter what state it is. But yes, you could still mess up. And you’ll either need to live with that or spend more money to rectify the decorating gone wrong.

“Do you have the ability to visualize? Are you a creative type? If you’re not, then you need some help,” says Homesley, “because it is expensive, and you don’t want to make any mistakes.”

Do note that DIY won’t necessarily save you money. Home decorating can be time consuming with lots of hits and misses along the way, unless you are a certified by experience, DIY home decorator ninja. Even so, being a veteran in renovating will not exempt you for the hustle and bustle of beautifying a home.

Question to ask yourself before going DIY

-          What’s your time worth?

-          Will that time justify the expenses you’ll be saving?

-          If you make a mistake and something has to be redone, can you afford to forfeit your savings?

-          Are you certain about your decorating decisions?

-          Are you confident to pull off a major project such as this?

-          Do you have resources or references for the furnishings you want to use?

-          Are you conscientious enough to do the legwork of research, cost comparison, and canvass of materials?

Think about these things before saying you’ll do it yourself.



Interior Designer to the Rescue

Interior designers have access to a huge selection of to-the-trade only furnishings and things that you would not normally see. What you see in store is only a small portion of what is available; there are designer wholesale showrooms that working with a decorator can give you access to.

You can have a home that is tailored to your tastes and lifestyle without sacrificing quality. If you have the money to spare for a pro, then by all means, hiring an interior designer is the way to go.

Designer Amy Luff of Viva Luxe Studios in Bristol, Virginia says, “Designers can save you money. And they can save you from repaying for something.”

Interior Designer Gone Wrong: The Cons

A professional home decorator can be really expensive. It can also be very intimate. You share a lot of time together and could end up working for months, even years. For someone who values privacy and solitude, this can be a shaky ground to tread on. You have to share details about yourself in order for the interior designer to incorporate your personality and taste into your home’s design.

The length of time of working together could be summed up into the idea of just like having a new best friend. You will argue, challenge each other, complement and compliment, and would have to stick together whether you like it or not to make it work. It’s important to like and trust your designer so that you can communicate easily with him or her.

There’s a sense of fulfillment with decorating your home yourself that you might not feel if you have someone who does the work for you. A good designer will involve you and make you feel that you were not merely just a client who paid to make your home look good, but a homeowner who made the difference to change his or her home for the better.


Going In Between: DIY with a Pro

You like the idea of working with a decorator or interior designer, but abhor the thought of additional cost or the loss of participation. For those caught in the middle, here are some arrangements you could consider:

1. Hire an interior decorator by the hour for the purpose of consultation – to help you plan the layout, furniture, fabric and color choices, and other technicalities – then execute the plan yourself.  Not all designers accept assignments like this, which is on a smaller scale than the norm, but for sure, there are some who will welcome it. If you know an interior decorator or has a friend who knows one, that could help in your search.

2. A virtual designer is fast becoming a favorite option for many. An increasing number of designers have moved to the internet world to practice their craft. Send them photos, samples, or a floor plan, and they can provide consultation for a fee, without having to meet face to face. Everything can be done online.

3. Similar to number 1, hire a pro for the selection process only. Design the project yourself but a pro you can pay on an hourly basis can give you verdict on items you’re not too sure about.

4. Some furniture stores will work with you on home decorating without charge, granted that you purchase from their store. If you like some stuff in the store, then this is a great deal.








About the author

The Blake Team is a full-service Real Estate team based in Aurora, Colorado specializing in working with Buyers & Sellers, foreclosures/HUD, short sales, and luxury properties. A team with years of experience and an impressive success rate that made it the No.18 real estate brokerage in the nation, as well as the No.1 Keller Williams agent in Colorado led by CEO & Founder Lisa Blake. The Blake Team is your No. 1 choice for getting your dream home!