Charging a fee for your design services has considerable benefits over charging by the hour. But many designers still hold themselves back from receiving the financial and time benefits associated with being fee-based. Why?
First off, many designers believe that if they charge a fee for their services, no one will pay them that much. Truth is, they are putting their own personal money values into their clients’ jobs and assuming that their own financial situation would prevent them from spending that much for design help.
So they assume that others, including their clients, would feel the same. This of course is simply not true. Just because you personally might not want to spend big to purchase an A Rudin sofa for your home doesn’t mean that your client doesn’t want to spend big for an expensive, top quality, name brand sofa.
Second, many designers devalue their own design genius. They think that because the art of interior design comes so easily for them, and they love to design so much, it must not be that valuable. Their belief system tells them that no one would ever pay them that much.
Design genius, as I like to call it, is a talent, a gift, and a blessing that you have been given. I truly believe that when you are given this genius, you have a responsibility to share and help others live in environments that foster beauty, health and peace.
Then consider this: a big part of giving is being open to receiving the gifts that come back to you as you help others. In the case of designing, those gifts are in the form of money. Be mindful that you are good at giving, and that you have very likely been programed from childhood to create, please and make everyone happy. Most of all… remember that you are good at it, and deserve to be rewarded for your genius.
It is more difficult and takes some conscious practice to learn to receive gracefully. Picture this… your relationship with your clients is energetically circular. What you give to others comes back to you tenfold. In order to share your gift in a big way and help many people live better and more beautifully, you must learn receive in a big way as well.
An expensive sofa is just a sofa sitting in a showroom until you conceive of something amazing to do with it, so always remember that your design genius is far more valuable than a piece of furniture.
Finally, many designers don’t know where to begin to figure out how much a design fee should be. They fear that they will call out a fee amount that is too low and the client will take unfair advantage of them. It is not their fault they lack the basic tools and knowledge to benefit from charging design fees, no one has ever told them how.
Actually, it is not too difficult to call out a design fee based on what you know about the scope of the job. Then setting limits on design meetings, shopping trips, number of selections and choices you will provide. After all, you are in control of your design job, not the client.
When your Letter of Agreement is written properly you always can charge extra hours for those client “add-ons” because the scope of the job is clearly stated.
Want to know how to confidently call out a design fee that pays you what you are worth? Want to hear from other designers who are receiving five and six figure design fees? Want to know exactly, step by step how they are doing it?
My Designing For Dollars 3.0 home study training series will show you how. Get the audio CDs of the entire two-day workshop, recorded live at High Point market, along with the PowerPoint slides, workbook, templates, worksheets and cheat sheets you need to learn from home at your own pace.
- Get a client to agree to a budget even if they don’t have a clue (in a few minutes at the first appointment).
- Confidently call out a design fee that pays you well for your design genius.
- Make an offer for design services at three levels (good, better, best) so you get the job.
- Write a simple Letter of Agreement that protects you and your time, and sells the job.
- Get my easy, repeatable, word-for-word scripts to ask for the job, get the deposit check and start designing right away.