our interior design process
Pricing & Info
Our eDesign Packages & Full-Service Design Services benefit from an in-depth consultation with our expert Design Team, style coordination and planning, product research and selection, and our beautiful digital and interactive design boards.
Our Full-Service projects then continue onto the areas of Purchase Processing, our Preferred Vendor Discount Pricing, Delivery Coordination, Subcontractor Management and Professional Installation.
All of our Interior Design Services begin with an in-depth consultation with our expert Design Team. On average, appointments last between 1-2 hours, depending on the scope & size of the project requested. Our consultations are priced at $80/hour.
During the consultation we discuss, or discover your personal taste, style, and that feel that you are looking to achieve. We will work together to complete our Design Questionnaire. Our Design Questionnaire helps us create the foundation of your project by covering numerous subjects-- from how long you've lived in your home, and plan to continue residing within, to your favorite hobbies, how you entertain guests, your budget, colors or patterns you love & hate and much, much more. We then conduct a tour throughout the areas you have requested assistance with, review any functionality, storage, decor, flooring, paint, and/or accessory issues and take photographs to reference throughout your project.
Consultations can be scheduled to take place in-home/on-site for Clients within the DC/Baltimore Metro area, or by Skype/Facetime for Clients who reside elsewhere, or have busy schedules that do not allow for a face-to-face appointment.
We will provide an estimate, review our process, your budget and timeline, and your Client Agreement documents.
Research & project outline
Once your consultation and Design Questionnaire have been completed and your Client Agreement has been finalized, we are ready to get your project rolling. We begin your by breaking down your budget to fit your requested items. We track sales, specials, discounts and other promotions retailers and our preferred vendors are currently running and start researching products that match those you have requested, fit the design plan, your style and budget. If requested, we'll start researching any paint, wallpaper, flooring, hardware, fixtures, electronics, appliances, etc. and request quotes from any sub contractors.
All of our clients receive digital and interactive Design Boards. We have partnered with Wecora, an awesome host site, which allows our Clients to navigate their board(s) with ease, and saves money and time compared to traditional design boards. Once your board is ready for your review, an email containing a link to create your FREE Wecora account will be sent. Once logged in, you will be able to visit your board(s) whenever you like, leave us feedback in the comments, read descriptions we've provided, view slideshows, click on photographs of your options to get a better view, and so much more.
Full-Service- we generally focus on the primary pieces at this point, while small decor & accessories that will complete your cohesive and beautiful design project are researched later in our process.
Wecora allows our Clients to cruise through their boards and narrow down products and items easily by using the 'Like It' & "Dislike It' buttons. Each Full-Service product will receive a minimum of 3 options; and eDesign Packages each come with their own set number of revisions--So, if you find that you aren't in love with the first option presented, don't worry! Through the feedback you provide, and the 1st draft of your boards, we are always able to find the perfect pieces for every client. Once we've narrowed down the options, your board is complete and we compile your Purchase List.
eDesign Packages are completed at this point and the Click-Able Purchase List with vendor/retailer links and your Boards are provided to you via a PDF document through email for you to purchase and implement the design at your own pace. Should you find that you wish to have further assistance, all of the following steps below, including Purchase Processing and Professional Installation, are available to be purchased at our flat and simple hourly rate as add-ons to your project.
*NOTE for eDesign Projects: Per our agreements with our Preferred Vendors, project purchasing must be processed through The Better Half to be eligible for any Preferred Vendor Discounts.This does NOT include any public sales, coupons, promotions and/or any other non-trade specific discounts which will still be available to clients who perform their own purchasing; subject to vendor/retailer guidelines and rules.*
If you are a Full-Service client, your items are entered into a formal proposal and then we move on to the steps listed below, which consist of: processing all of Vendor Quotes and Preferred Vendor Discounts, Purchase Orders, coordinate Deliveries, management of Sub-Contractors and get your Professional Installation scheduled.
Once the Final Board Draft is completed, the items that have made the cut are entered into a Formal Proposal via a secure online link to our interactive system. You will be able to review all of the details about each item in this proposal-- pricing, estimated delivery dates, dimensions, finish options, subcontractor quotes and more. Once you're read through everything and are ready to move forward, simply select the 'Accept Proposal' button which gives your Design Team the thumbs up to begin processing the Purchase Orders.
As soon as your Proposal has been accepted, the Designers will begin processing Purchase Orders and submitting them to the vendors for all products and items for the design project. One of the great benefits of working with The Better Half is that our firm maintains amazing relationships with many of the top retailers nationwide, as well as some of the best kept secret small & local vendors in the Greater DC/Baltimore Metro. These relationships enable us to provide you with not only the very best quality of goods, materials products, but unbeatable pricing.
decor & accessories
This is one of the most fun portions of each project and it's these little details that assist in truly brining together the final, cohesive and beautiful design project. As with every other step of our process, your level of involvement depends completely on your comfort and desire.
Surprise Decor! If you have opted to allow your Designer to select the general decor & accessories for your project without your input or approval, those products are researched and purchased at this time and will be presented during the grand reveal as a surprise. We never purchase unapproved products that cannot be returned, or exceed the budget set forth by the client. In general, we always recommend that each project have at least a few areas left as a surprise for installation because surprises are obviously awesome. ;-)
Let's go Shopping! If you prefer to be included in the selection of decor & accessories, a joint shopping trip can be scheduled and/or the designer may create an additional design board for you to review and approve these items just as you did with your primary boards. These little details assist in brining together the final, cohesive and beautiful design project.
No need to worry about having to take off a half day from work to sit around and wait for the crazy 4-hour delivery window for each and every piece of furniture-- we handle all of that nonsense for you! All items delivered directly to your home/business, all products are stored securely within our office until your installation date. For certain items, we may find that it beneficial to have an item delivered to your home or business. If this is the case, we will attempt to schedule delivery for the date of installation. If a delivery prior to installation is necessary, a member of your Design Team can be present to sign for the delivery, or we can work with the shipping company to ensure that the process does not interfere with your daily schedule. We always strive to coordinate the deliveries to save on money and time. After all, a dollar saved on shipping is another dollar that goes towards a killer piece of decor and furniture!
If you are a New Build client who needs long-term storage while contraction is wrapped up, we do offer long-term storage within our office or at a secure warehouse facility at a small monthly fee.
renovations & subcontractor management
If your project includes any renovations in flooring, painting, molding, custom window treatments, lighting fixtures, appliances, cabinets, plumbing, etc. we will work with you to design each portion. Once you have approved the plans, we will request estimates from one of the many subcontractors we partner with (who are the very best in the business) for you to select the best quote and then we will management all subcontractors to ensure that all tasks are performed correctly, and beautifully prior to your Design Project installation.
Should you have a professional already in mind, simply provide us with their contact information and we can take it from there.
scheduling & install
Full-Design Installation appointments are scheduled once the second retainer payment has been received and the deliveries have been arranged. The length of your Installation depends completely on the size and scope of your Design Project.
During the appointment, your Design Team shows up ready to knock out the installation. If applicable, subcontractors may join us during this time to complete their tasks so that the full project comes together for the grand reveal.
Once the entire project has been installed, we take photographs and welcome our Clients back home for their Grand Reveal!