Architects are not interior designers.

As a general rule interior design is not a priority for architects. What happens with a new build or complete refurbishment is that the architect will simply specify provisional sums for interior elements – “£6 a metre for skirting” or “£120 for the lights here”. Someone else is left to make the final design decisions.

That ‘someone else’ will be you, at the last minute – with perhaps 48 hours’ notice to run around and visit various suppliers to find something that you like and is available.

The trouble is this is not only stressful and time consuming, but it’s very, very expensive. You see the bid the contractor tendered is based the architect’s vague specifications. Contractors know this, and the reality is that as soon as you sign them up, they have an inbuilt tendency to screw every last penny out of you through ‘cost variations’.