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The Interior Design Reference & Specification Book by Mimi Love, Chris Grimley, Linda O'Shea

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02
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THE INTERIOR DESIGN REFERENCE + SPECIFICATION BOOK
Chapter 2: Project Management
The designer and client must reach a common understanding of the contracts,
fees, and design process for a project to succeed. For large projects, a project
manager will assume responsibility for coordinating these business aspects of
the job. For smaller projects, the designer has both to design and to manage the
project. Typically, management issues weigh heavily at the beginning of a project,
but they must be attended to throughout to ensure that the fees, schedules, and
agreements are all being met.
CONTRACTS
The first step in embarking on a project is for the designer and client to sign a contract. The
contract defines the scope, qualifications, assumptions, exclusions, duration, and terms of the
project. Ideally, it is set up in a manner that separates the scope into specific design tasks,
determining, for example, the number of meetings to be held or the number of renderings or
sample boards to be provided. In addition to detailing the scope, the contract should include
a list of qualifications, which are limitations placed on the scope. A typical qualification might
be “the project fee is based on 20,000 square feet” or “the project fee is based on a six-month
design period.Including a list of assumptions will avoid miscommunication; for example, “as-
built AutoCAD drawings will be provided by owner” or “the project will be phased into two con-
struction projects.” It is equally important to list exclusions to the contract, such as an interior
survey is not in contract” or “furniture selections are not part of contract.” This will help to
identify issues or consultants for which the designer is not responsible. The contract must
also provide a written description or a graphic schedule that outlines the project timeline.
DESIGN FEES
When negotiating a fee, it is up to the designer and the client to agree on the fee structure.
For most design disciplines,
vices, due to the vastly different nature of individual projects
can range from a modest renovation to a new custom-tailored design, and the fee may be best
structured on an
it would be reasonable to assume a fee
said, most designers choose among several methods for structuring fees, either alone or in
combination, and adjust them to suit a clients particular needs.
SCOPE QUALIFICATIONS ASSUMPTIONS EXCLUSIONS DURATION TERMS
Terms of Agreement to Include in Every Contract
Limitations of liability
Payment terms
Code interpretations and ADA compliance
Ownership of documents
No consequential damages
Termination or suspension
Insurance and indemnification
Common Mistakes to Avoid When Establishing a Contract
Not defining a detailed scope of work
Starting before the contract is signed
Not defining a method of compensation
Not red-flagging additional services as they arise
Not listing reimbursable items
Not halting work when payments are overdue
Job:02-30056 Title: RP-Interior Design Reference and Specification
#175 Dtp:216 Page:18
(RAY)
018-023_30056.indd 18 3/4/13 7:21 PM

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