INSIDESIGN interior design blog - no1 rule of renovation


The theme of today is Number 1. Of all the random firsts, the bests and the most important(s) of the design world I selected this:

What is the number one most important thing to do when renovating (yet often gets skipped)?


I’m tempted to say “hire a Finnish interior designer”, but it is not actually the most important thing. Many people manage to do their renovations with a good builder alone, or with a talented architect supervising an average builder.

However, (un)surprisingly it is the same as in any project – DA-DA-DUM! – COMMUNICATION

The most important thing during your renovation is to communicate clearly with your tradesmen, in order to make sure they know what you’re expecting of them. (Now, this applies to the average builder too, if you hired one of them. And to the rest of the world.)

When you’re having light switches installed around your bedhead, the electrician needs to know the size and location of the bedhead.

calm bedside by INSIDESIGN
Photo: Joshua Witheford

When the plumber is installing the fancy standalone tap for the bathtub, he needs to know the size and shape of the tap and the bath and exactly where it’s going to go.

bathtub - interior design blog
Bathroom design by INSIDESIGN / Photo by Rebecca Lu Photography

And when you want the tiles to be laid in a certain pattern, you’d better be there when the tiler starts his work.

Diesel laundry splashback tiles
Photo: Laundry design by INSIDESIGN / Photo by Rebecca Lu Photography

Let me repeat: you need to be there.


If not You as in “You who are now reading this” then a trusted partner or friend who has deep knowledge of the intended design, your builder, an interior designer (oh, oops…!), a project manager or the architect.

Written instructions, although critical for designing and planning for the implementation, do not count as clear communication in this instance – you need to assume that nobody ever reads the manual, ok? And it’s no use being there a day early when they are concentrating on other tasks, or three hours late, when it’s all done 5 cm too far left.

So be there, at the start of the work, with your design in hand, and communicate.


It will only make it better.

Have a lovely day!



Read here my next blog: What is the Number 1 step of designing a kitchen.