How much does it cost to furnish a room?
Talking about money makes most people squirm a little bit but it’s a really important part of the decorating and design process for us with our clients. If you’ve not furnished a full house before or if it’s been a number of years since you last did it, you probably (rightly) haven’t a clue how much money you need to set aside to execute the entire decorating process. But that’s totally fine and we expect that when we first start working with clients so prepare for this conversation in advance. We have a number of tools and spreadsheets we share with clients to work out a realistic budget for them so that when it comes time for us to start selecting products for their rooms we aren’t going for the most expensive items we can possibly find.
Here are a few helpful tips for you:
Do It In Stages
Most people do the decorating in phases. Some clients want to execute the whole lot in one go and if their budget allows for this then go for it. If not, work to a larger plan but take it in stages. For example, if you have the budget to get started on some of your larger ticket items like sofas, coffee table, art and dining table but you want to wait and save a bit before doing the other bits and pieces like cushions, rug, side tables and lamps then that’s a-okay! Good rooms take time and we are firm believers that the more time you have available to you for the decorating process, the more personalised your end result will be because you aren’t buying based on lead times and stock availability just to get the room furnished.
Make A Shopping List
If you’re working with an interior designer, it’s helpful to have thought about the specific pieces you really want in each room. That way when you first meet with your designer you can brief them on exactly the way you use the room and how furniture will impact the way you use the room. This list also then helps you start allocating some numbers against each item…
Cost It Up
Once you’ve worked out the specific pieces you need for the room, start doing a bit or research online to see what the average price points of those items are. Sites like Temple & Webster, Zanui, Freedom, Ikea, Oz Design Furniture and even Coco Republic if your budget stretches are a good place to start to asses differing price points per item. Create your own spreadsheet tallying each of the items in your list to get a realistic budget amount you’ll need to aim for if you want to be able to purchase every single item on the list. Don’t forget to include quantities of each item or you’ll end up short changing yourself when it comes time to buying five cushions instead of just one!
Don’t get caught out by not budgeting for things like freight, installation costs, unpacking and rubbish removal fees. They aren’t fun costs but they are important costs that you often can’t avoid when ordering large pieces of furniture. And trust us, you’ll want to pay the extra fees to have the delivery guys unpack, install and remove the rubbish. Ain’t nobody got time for that!!
Interior designers are able to access trade or wholesale pricing for a huge range of furniture and homewares stores so often your designer will be able to pass on their discount to you saving you between 10-40% off the recommended retail price. If you’re furnishing an entire house then using a designer is a no brainer with the mega savings you’ll be able to make! Just make sure you’ve done your homework first and you’re realistic about your budget so you aren’t wasting your designers time when they’re sourcing the pieces for you. You typically pay a designer by the hour to source products for you so if you actually want to spend a bit less on certain pieces, tell your designer that. It takes about the same amount of time to source a cheap and cheerful product as it does a high end one so it won’t matter too much to your designer what your actual budget is.
Budgeting Designers Fees
Add your designer/decorators fees to your budget too so you have an overall idea of what you’ll need to budget to get started. If you’d like to know more about how much a designer or decorator costs to hire, feel free to check out my FAQs with a budget breakdown or get in touch and I can send you a quote!
Here’s a bedroom example to give you a full budget breakdown:
- Queen Bedhead – $599
- 2x Bedside Tables – $559 ea
- 2x Bedside Lamps – $189 ea
- Rug – $679
- 2x Cushions – $69.99 ea
- Throw Rug – $99.99
- Queen Quilt Cover – $299.99
- Queen Sheet Set – $245
- Pendant Light – $459
- Framed Artwork – $355
TOTAL BUDGET: $4,372.96 (Plus freight, install, unpack and rubbish removal if you opt for it)
That doesn’t include the mattress, window treatments, wallpaper, wardrobes or other bits and pieces specific to whoever is living in the room so you can see how the costs add up really quickly. Especially if you’re costing out an entire home.