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How Much Does An Interior Designer Or Decorator Cost?

Typical Range: $1,920 - $11,382

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Interior Designer and Decorator Costs

The cost to hire an interior designer or decorator averages $6,513, ranging from $1,913 and $11,277. The total price depends on:

  • Square footage
  • The way the pro charges for the service
  • Whether they’re a designer or decorator

Tackling home improvements can be intimidating, whether you want to redecorate your kitchen or build an addition. Before you start selecting paint colors, you’ve got to consider building codes, window placement, electrical outlets and more.

If your head is starting to spin and you aren't sure where to start, it's time to call a pro. Hiring an interior decorator or interior designer helps to keep a project on schedule and under budget. Keep in mind that these jobs are different, with unique skills and services. Here’s a few cost factors to help you find the right one for the job.

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National Average
$6,577
Typical Range
$1,920 - $11,382
Low End - High End
$293 - $45,000

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Cost data is based on actual project costs as reported by 1,929 HomeAdvisor members in .

Interior Designer Cost

Hiring an interior designer costs $6,550 on average. These trained and licensed professionals can help you create functional, quality spaces that match your requirements.

Their expertise and knowledge of local building codes and regulations makes their services more expensive than a decorator. They often work with architects to ensure that the plan is safe and efficient.

Interior Design Price List
Hourly Rate$50-$200
Per Square Foot$5-$15
Consultation$150-$500
Per Room$200-$2,000
Markup on Materials10%-40%

Interior Designer Hourly Rate

Most residential designers charge $50 to $200 per hour, not including shopping or materials. If you’re not hiring a pro for a commercial space of 5,000+ square feet, you can expect this to be the standard.

Design Fees Per Square Foot

Designers of large spaces typically charge $5 to $15 per square foot. This usually doesn’t include furnishings or installation. Pros that set rates by the square foot often have a minimum fee for smaller spaces like a bedroom or bathroom.

Design Consultation Fee

The initial design consultation costs $150 to $500, depending on the length and complication. Consultations typically last 2 to 4 hours. This part of the process helps you:

  • Tell the pro what you want for the space
  • See what they can do for you
  • Decide if they are a good fit for your project

Freelance Interior Designer Rates

If you hire a freelance interior designer, you’ll pay the same range of $2,000 to $11,300. Many run their own businesses instead of working for a firm.

Since these pros often do not have a regular income, expect tight timelines on the payment schedule. In exchange, they may offer more flexible appointment times.

Commercial Designer Fees

Commercial designers prefer to charge by the square foot, with a range of $5 to $15 per square foot. This is because spaces 5,000 square feet and larger make this method profitable.

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Interior Decorator Cost

Hiring an interior decorator costs $2,000 to $11,300. These professionals choose and implement the décor that gives a room its unique appearance including:

  • Window treatments
  • Paint
  • Wallpaper
  • Accessories

Decorators don’t need formal training, so they aren’t qualified to design or build spaces. Instead, they dress the room, introducing new color schemes and stylish elements. Ask about a pro’s experience before hiring them, to get a sense for what they can do for your home.

Interior Decorator Price List
Hourly Rate$50-$150
Consultation$100-$300
Markup on Materials10%-40%

Interior Decorator Hourly Rate

Interior decorators usually charge an hourly rate of $50 to $150 per hour. Be sure to clarify what’s included in the service.

If you’re willing to give decorators complete control over the room layout and furnishings, they may charge a flat rate which includes:

  • Décor plan
  • Materials
  • Installation
  • Commission

Decorator Consultation Pricing

The initial consultation with a decorator costs $150 to $300 and lasts 1 to 2 hours. During the meeting, you’ll talk about your project and discuss your options.

Some pros will give you a free consultation. This is usually a short interview of about 30 minutes to help you see if the decorator is right for you. It’s not intended to give you a plan.

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Interior Design Fees Structure

Generally, decorators and designers use one or more ways to charge for their services:

Hourly Rate$50-$200
Square Foot$5 to $15 per square foot
Flat RateCovers all aspects of the project
Cost Plus/Markup10 to 40 percent, typically used for materials only

When you're shopping for quotes for interior designers or decorators, comparing rates isn't always easy. You may get a quote that seems too good to be true, only to discover the pro is using a different pricing structure than others.

As you browse through contracts and fees, make sure you understand what’s included. Design-only fees usually cover the consultation, creation of the plan and revisions. You’ll generally ask for this service if you want to hire someone else to do the construction.

If you’re hiring the same company to execute the plan, expect to pay management fees of 20 to 30 percent. Full project fees usually include a combination of hourly and markup charges.

What Impacts Interior Design Prices?

With a range of $2,000 to $11,300, it’s hard to tell how much your project is going to cost. Interior design and decoration prices depend on:

  • Size of Project: A whole house runs more than a single room
  • Designer Reputation: Well-known or celebrity pros usually charge more
  • Timeframe: Projects usually take 2 to 3 months, expect to pay more for rush orders
  • Materials: Furnishings can add $2,000 to $5,000+ to the total
  • Software: Hiring a pro with expertise in design software increases their rate
  • Your Design Goals: The more ambitious your plan, the more you pay

DIY vs. Hiring a Professional Interior Decorator or Designer

For most projects, you’ll want to hire an interior decorator or designer. A professional can:

  • Use their expertise to create a design that works for you
  • Simplify the project to a set of definable steps
  • Save you time by relying on their insider knowledge
  • Take advantage of tools, like software

When you’re ready to interview interior designers near you, plan to get three quotes and ask how they usually set rates.

FAQs

What’s the difference between interior decorators vs. designers?

If you’re considering interior designer vs. decorator, remember that designers focus on the layout and function of the structure. By comparison, decorators add color and furnishings exclusively after construction.

How much do interior designers charge?

Interior designers usually charge $50 to $200 per hour, or $5 to $15 per square foot for larger projects.

How much do interior decorators charge?

Interior decorators cost $50 to $150 per hour, with a 10 to 40 percent markup on materials.

How much do interior designers and decorators make?

On average, interior designers make about $54,000 per year. Decorators earn around $42,000 per year.

How should I prepare to work with an interior designer or decorator?

Knowing what you want helps you find the right pro for your plans. When working with a designer or decorator:

  1. Get inspired by projects other homeowners have done.
  2. Define your goals.
  3. Set a budget.
  4. Stay in charge from start to finish.

Can an interior designer save you money?

Hiring an interior designer can save you money by ensuring that the project meets your needs and building codes from the beginning.

How much involvement do I have in the interior design process?

Your involvement in the interior design process depends on your personality. Some homeowners like to give input at every stage, while others prefer the pro to handle all the details.

Should an interior designer have a license?

Interior designers need a degree from an accredited institution. Check the contractor licensing requirements to see if your state also requires a license.

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How do we get this data?

  1. Homeowners visit HomeAdvisor.com to find a top-rated pro to complete their home improvement project or repair.

  2. Once their projects are completed, the members log in to their accounts and complete a short cost survey.

  3. After compiling and organizing the data, we report it back to you.