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Dear fellow forumers,

My wife and I are first time property owners and the search for an ID is giving us a massive headache as we are unsure who we can work with. To us, we prioritise someone whom we can trust, then cost, and finally design flair. However, it's been difficult as trust is purely based on gut instinct and can be hit or miss, while we are seeing a wide range of quotes as well.

The place we bot is a condo unit via resale and intended works is average, neither massive nor minor. Initial budget 30k.

I have reached out to the following firms and am in midst of meeting up w them to get quotes. Some have reverted back and we have 'rejected' several due to 1) cost, 2) seen bad reviews online, 3) don't feel comfortable during meeting (eg sales talk, designer seems young/inexperienced, pushy etc)

Really appreciate if anyone can share any experiences/feedback that you may have w these firms. Any feedback is good for us as we wanna narrow down the list further. We are not asking for the impossible, just want a fairly priced service. If you have any recommendations, do share w us as well! Thanks...

Original List (will write my review soon):

9 Degree
A Home Story (now known as Luxurious Design Pte. Ltd.)
Altered Interior
iDees

Flipside Design
KNQ Associates/Home Rejuvenation
Lux Design Pte Ltd
Rezt and Relax
Space Define Interior
Ted ID
ZQ Studio Pte Ltd

Narrowed down list (Please PM me if u need a referral/contact to any ID in the 'Narrowed down list' below.)

Thom Signature Design (I have nothing but good things to say about Thom. Quotation was very competitive right from the start. We worked with Joy and she was very professional and patient throughout. Even when we very undecided, she just told us to go with who we felt comfy with and assured us that there will not be any hidden costs and that she will be dedicated to the project throughout. She was never pushy once, was upfront and always willing to listen. Felt bad we had to turn her down in the end, but she took it in her stride and said she will try harder in future. Only thing that was that we felt they could do a good job no qualms about that, just unsure if it would have been 'Wow'. Think they are very underrated and they really just need do up a nice portfolio book/profile to strengthen their pitch. Let me know if u wanna speak to her! )

Darwin Interior (Had a good session with Alex, quote was reasonable, he was very approachable and willing to listen to us, admitted that he didn't know certain things and will go check for us if it's doable rather than promise us, and he gave good ideas too. Was patient and never pushy. Yet i found many unsavoury reviews on the forum abt them.. So confusing. Didn't want to chance it in the end.)

Emailed to request for quote/meetup but never reverted:

Butget Studio (replied to say will revert in few days but never did)

Rob.Wynn Interior Design Studio (reverted to arrange for meet up, had to cancel due to work and the guy finally contacted me again 2 weeks down asking if we were supposed to meet)

The Association (had a referral from a friend to see them, called them to arrange a meeting, followed up with an email. They replied saying the ID (Kum) will contact me but she never did until 2-3 weeks later. By then we more or less decided on a firm. We went to see our friend's place. Its nicely done up but slightly on the expensive side)

Fullhouse Interior Render (radio silence)

Inspired Homes (met me and I actually had a very good impression of them and had high hopes as portfolio seemed good and their prelim sensing of my budget seemed ok. They promised to come back with a quote . Never did. I know my budget was not easy to meet and I did tell them it was not easy, ppl were struggling. I told them where the other firm was at. At least come back and try to justify if quote was higher. We are not unreasonable people and did shifted our budget higher in the end.)

Maia Design (no reply)

Singapore Interior Design (no reply)
Singapore Renovation (no reply)

H.ome C.hoice (no reply)

C.lassic I.deas Design & Build (no reply)

9Lives Interior Design (sent 2 emails, both if which were received with an auto reply saying they will follow up shortly but they never did)

Turned down (due to price, the best quote we had was around 35k):
Urban Atelier
(>60k, didn't even meet, just upfront say price over phone)
Mong Design Studio (>60k, didn't even meet, just upfront say price over phone)
Momo and Partners (>80k, didn't even meet, just upfront say price over phone)

Prozfile (>70k, met Allen. Very nice young guy. Portfolio is good and photos are 'Wow'. these are real photos and not 3D too. He knew he was out of budget but still insisted on meeting us, explaining why he is more expensive and as he knew we only have a vague idea of what we wanted, he guided us through some colour schemes to consider, effects that we can look to achieve. After few days, he did a followup call, just to find out which firm he lost out to and was it solely due to price he lost out on. V good impression)

Turned down (due to other reasons):

I-Bridge Design (Very bad impression. Met Shirley, whom roped in her manager (alvin?). The guy was more focused on locking us into a 3D design. Said 'all we need u is to commit 1k to a 3d drawing, we believe in letting u see the design first, then only u have a better idea. Afterwhich we can talk abt the renovation'. Told him I was concerned after paying 1k and not liking the 3D OR worst still, his renovation quote will be skyrocket high. He said 'don't worry, from what I see, 22-25k at most'. Everyone took days to quote and all struggled to even meet under 40k and he could just quote offhand? Amazing.)
Artrend Design (bad online reviews; our ID, young girl whom didn't seem v experienced, left the firm halfway and her boss followed up and told us only 3 weeks later.)
Inspire by D'trenzo (bad feedback from forumers)
V.egas interior design (sales fluff from boss who was very hard to talk to, wanted to share abt all his 'rich clients' than listen to us, sent his SYT junior ID to engage us, wanted us to commit 2k to their 3d design first. Quote was extravagant and didnt seem trustworthy. "Huh 30k cannot lah, i see at least 60k la, trust me it will be fine. You know this Datuk/Indon/etc trust me so much, told me to just reno and give him the bill.' Sorry I'm not a Datuk, neither do I own a money printing press.)

Edited by 1sttimeowner
 

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To be honest, I don't see why I should shortchange myself and just place my bets on 3-5 guys.. Why not take my time to speak to as many firms as I can to making an informed decision?

In any case, I'm just asking if anyone has good feedback on any of the firms above or bad experiences? If good, I will just make a sidenote to give them more consideration. If bad, at least I have a heads up.

 

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Yea I know..but thought its good to make an informed choice and the only way is to hit many firms so as to find one that will suit. Imagine all the rejections I have to make later! Lol maybe it's our 1st home so we are more cautious!

 

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I-bridge are good on their first impression (with their portfolio introduction & promises).Dont get carried away.Those are empty promises & you will sure to have a hard time with them once they receive yr cheques.Stay alert though!

 

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Yea jackdaniel..I fully agree w u. I went down to their office. Intro n showroom was fantastic, was brought around by a junior staff. Then after sitting down, she brought in her 'manager' some Alvin or Alex guy.. Who was more focused on selling us his 3d design package for 1k. Said that most impt is we must see design, then we can visualise what we want. Thereafter then can talk abt renovation.

Asked what if after paying for the 3d, the renovation cost is out of budget. He said from his estimates, can easily go under my budget by 3-8k. I gave a lowball figure n yet he could go under. EVERY firm I spoke to, said it was difficult. Yet this guy could confidently estimate the cost just by looking at the list of works that I have requested for. Every other firm took at least 3 days to come back w an estimated cost yet he could just tell it there n then. And trust me I had a long list of requirements to be done.

Straightaway blacklisted cuz this guy had too much sales talk in him.

 

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Added 2 more firms which we have decided to we eliminate!

Anyone with feedback on Darwin? I had a good session with them, quote was reasonable, the guy was very approachable and willing to listen to us, admitted that he didn't know certain things and will go check for us if it's doable rather than promise us, and he gave good ideas too.

Yet i found many unsavoury reviews on the forum abt them.. So confusing haha

 

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Hi hanafi..Chris from butget replied me quickly after my initial email, said give him 3 days to estimate a quote. Went silent after that and that was 3 weeks ago. Figured he is not too keen to follow up and I definitely won't want an ID who will go radio silent for my project.

 

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Hi hanafi..Chris from butget replied me quickly after my initial email, said give him 3 days to estimate a quote. Went silent after that and that was 3 weeks ago. Figured he is not too keen to follow up and I definitely won't want an ID who will go radio silent for my project.

Well I can see that they received very overwhelming request for quote and projects. Am skeptical too if they might either be too busy to manage a project and issue will appears later. So have u decided with an Id?

 

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woah.. that's a lot of ID... no wonder you headache.. why not just pick a few that you think that you are most comfortable with and decide? other wise you will take a very long time to decide.. just my 2 cents worth.

 

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