Make a shortlist of 3 or 4 designers whose work you like, contact them on the phone and talk briefly about your project and budget and see if they are interested and if you feel a connection with them. Then meet them in person, ask them lots of questions, have a look at photos of their previous work and just generally get to know them.
Trust your gut instinct! The most important thing is not price, it’s whether you can build a rapport with the designer. You are going to entrust them with your hopes and dreams, not to mention plenty of your hard earned cash so there needs to be good communication and mutual respect.
Does the designer get excited at the possibilities of your brief? Let their creativity flow and they may come up with solutions you had never thought of. On the other hand if they just want to be told what to do and you don’t feel that they are that interested then they aren’t the right person for you.
Working with the right designer can take you on a hugely satisfying journey being part of turning your house dreams into reality.