Interior Design for the Optimal Sale—Do I Need an Interior Designer for My Flip?
Thoughtful interior design can greatly increase the value of a property when taking on a home rehab project. But is it necessary to hire an interior designer? The answer is: it depends. First of all, it depends on your own values. Is your business solely streamlined to flip a home for maximum profit? Then as long as you’re getting offers, it doesn’t matter what you do. If it is also important to you that your business is adding value to a property and leaving a wake of beauty in your path, then you might really enjoy leveraging interior design elements that can make someone feel happier and healthier and more at home in a space that you sell to them. You can take pride in your work. If you feel like you already have a good eye for design, then maybe it’s not worth your time and money to hire a designer.
If you’re doing additions or moving walls to create new spaces, such as a modern layout, then a designer can be invaluable. A designer can often draft architectural drawings for a lower cost than an architect and then get an architect’s stamp of approval.
When deciding whether or not to invest in a designer, there are two main schools of thought. The first one, don’t bother hiring a designer because they are a waste of money and my property will sell anyways. The second school of thought is investing in a designer is worth every penny, because their magic touch can help my property sell quicker and for a higher dollar amount.
Whichever school of thought you belong to probably depends on the kind of market you’re working in and what kind of projects you’re working on. Are your projects not selling very quickly? Maybe experiment with hiring a designer and see what happens. You can experiment with both and gather the data yourself.
The decision to invest in an interior designer depends on the property that you’re flipping. If you’re flipping homes in a higher end neighborhood or flipping high ticket homes over $500,000, then you might have a hard time selling a home that hasn’t incorporated a thoughtful interior design into the project.
On the other hand, if you’re rehabbing a typical home in a relatively desirable neighborhood, it might not matter so much, because you’re going to get offers anyways and your margins might already be too low to put anything more towards a designer. Buying materials in bulk such as flooring, cabinets, stone, and fixtures can help reduce costs and streamline your rehab project by keeping it simple, but it has the potential to create uniformity within the housing supply, and you can lose a competitive edge for being that unique home to close the sale. Some would argue that just a few small design elements on a low budget home gives it just enough edge in the market to close the deal quickly and reduce holding costs.