The word “budget” is one I heard frequently, and usually it’s used in negative terms, but it can truly be a positive idea. Having a budget is something that can eliminate stress, negate conflict in marriages, and keep you on track to meet your financial goals. It can also help anyone you hire, such as an interior designer (like me!), and can really give a clear picture of what you’re wanting and what’s realistic. Without a budget, these things are hard to gauge. Here are five reasons to make and keep your design parameters:
Know what you’re really working with: Sometimes, a client doesn’t realize how much something truly costs. They may under or overestimate a piece of furniture or even how much paint they will need, and it can skew their perception of how much they have to work with. This isn’t their fault, because it isn’t their field of expertise, but it makes it harder for me to help execute their dreams without a clear financial boundary. Having a budget means we won’t get to the end of a project, and run out of finances.
A budget makes sure your true priorities are reached: If you have a major goal of getting a new couch, and then using the rest of the funds to decorate around it, then a budget makes sure you get that couch, and don’t run out before you find the right one. A clear budget lets you or your designer know what you truly MUST have, and how to allocate the funds appropriately.
A clear cut budget also allows to obstacles to come up: If we hit a major snag in your design, such as a structural problem or an emergency, a clear budget will allow for issues and obstacles, and it won’t be a huge crisis to your pocketbook. It’s always great for clients to have a little wiggle room with their finances, and it helps anyone you hire to make sure everything gets taken care of. Sometimes a client also discovers that they don’t love an aspect, or that they want something more pricy than they originally thought, and a budget lets you make those changes without much stress.
Sticking to your budget won’t derail your long term financial plans: If you are currently trying to fund a large remodel, or you are saving up for a purchase (or just making a nest egg), sticking to your budget will help you breathe a little easier, and can get you one step closer to where you hope to be. It also cuts out the stress of loading everything onto a credit card with high interest, or taking out loans you know you cannot afford. You can rest easy when your design project is done, whether you hire someone or DIY, and know that you stuck to the amount you had available!