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First-time Home Buyer

Why Having Qualified Interior Designers on Your Team Is a Smart Move

IDC Design Symposium
Sponsored by:
IDC Design Symposium
Sponsored by:
Cheryl Broadhead

Cheryl Broadhead

Registered Interior Designers & Principal, Bob’s Your Uncle Design

Ian Rolston

Ian Rolston

President, Interior Designers of Canada (IDC)

Interior designers have the expertise to help home buyers find — or create — their dream home.


What comes to mind when you think of interior design? Do you picture a beautifully-furnished living room with trendy curved furniture, limewash walls, and vintage lighting? Or are you envisioning colour swatches, cabinetry mock-ups, and flooring samples? Perhaps you imagine a decorator focused on selecting the perfect candlesticks, throw pillow, or coffee table. If this is what comes to mind, you wouldn’t be wrong — but you also wouldn’t be seeing the full picture.

Today’s interior designers are highly-educated and accredited individuals who are involved in much more than decorating. And for new home buyers, partnering with an interior designer could get you closer to the home of your dreams.

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The multifaceted world of design

For Cheryl Broadhead, a Vancouver-based registered interior designer and principal of Bob’s Your Uncle Design, collaborating with architects, engineers, and consultants is par for the course. “My team and I select plumbing and lighting fixtures, and we work with electrical and mechanical engineers to make sure we’re meeting the energy requirements and water restrictions of a building,” she says. “Maybe five percent of our work falls into the decorating category.”

Broadhead is also LEED-certified and intimately familiar with the BC Building Code, and is regularly involved in selecting sustainable finishes and fixtures, addressing health and safety concerns, and incorporating technology into interior spaces.

“Interior designers wear many hats,” says Ian Rolston, President of Interior Designers of Canada (IDC), the national advocacy association for the interior design profession. “We’re part psychologist, part financial planner, part analytics specialist, and part project manager.”

Registered IDC members are qualified interior designers in good standing of their provincial interior design regulatory body in Canada.

Empowering home buyers

This wealth of experience is beneficial for home buyers, especially since the home-buying landscape has changed so drastically in recent years.

“In today’s market, there’s so much competition,” says Rolston. Buyers may wonder if they’ll be able to afford a home and to maintain a certain lifestyle. Fortunately, interior designers have the ability to address these concerns.

“We can help evaluate what buyers need,” says Rolston. “We also have the ability to evaluate potential housing opportunities, giving buyers an idea of what can be adjusted or suggesting renovations, to give them more ease in proceeding with a purchase, especially on a property that may not be everything they wanted.”

By helping home buyers see what’s possible and empowering them to make decisions that take into account sustainability, changing technology, and other key concerns, interior designers can help make home ownership more accessible. Interior designers can also help buyers create healthier indoor environments, equip their homes for the future with technological and aging-in-place inclusions, and create spaces they’ll love for years to come.

IDC is celebrating its 50th anniversary this year and Rolston looks forward to continuing its mission of representing the interior design industry with respect to the varying experiences and cultural, age, and gender make-ups that are representational of its membership. “I’m passionate about ensuring that we’re using spaces as opportunities to engage humanity,” he says. Because at the end of the day, that’s what our spaces are — places where we live, love, and grow.

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