Unsure of who to hire for your home renovation project?

The key difference lies in how much it costs for each.

You’re not alone! Many homeowners are unsure whether to hire an interior designer or a renovation contractor. Both have pros and cons, but which is the better option for you?

Another crucial factor is that banks in Singapore can only approve a maximum amount of $30k for your renovation loan.

To hire the right help, you will likely need to top up your renovation loan or secure a larger one. Lending Bee offers larger renovation loans of more than $30k.

This article provides detailed information about both interior designers and renovation contractors, as well as comparisons of the two. We also have tips on choosing the right one for your project.

So before you make a decision, read the article below.

Who Is Considered A Renovation Contractor?


A renovation contractor is a person who renovates houses. That’s the basic definition.

But there’s a little more to it than that.

A renovation contractor is someone who is experienced in the field of home improvement and has the necessary skills to carry out a variety of tasks, from painting and drywall repair to plumbing and electrical work. In addition, a renovation contractor should be familiar with your area’s building code and obtain the necessary permits for any work that needs to be done.

So if you’re considering hiring someone to renovate your home, ask if they’re a licensed renovation contractor. Otherwise, you might end up with a subpar job – and that would be a real shame.

However, a renovation contractor can’t advise you on design.

Enter interior designers.

Who Is Considered An Interior Designer?

Who is considered an interior designer? This question has been debated for centuries.

Some say that anyone who designs the interior of a space is an interior designer. Others argue that only those who have received formal training can lay claim to the title.

The truth is, there is no definitive answer.

In many cases, it comes down to a matter of personal opinion. However, there are a few things that most people would agree on.

  • An interior designer must have a good eye for aesthetics. They should be able to create pleasing and functional spaces that meet the needs of their clients.
  • They must be well-versed in the latest trends and developments in the field.
  • They should have a strong understanding of the construction process and building code requirements.

Whether or not someone meets all of these criteria is up for debate. But one thing is for sure:

Interior design is a complex and ever-evolving field, and those who practice it must constantly be learning and evolving.

How Do I Decide between a Renovation Contractor and an Interior Designer?


Now that you know the difference between a renovation contractor and an interior designer, let’s see which you can choose:

1. Interior Designer vs Renovation Contractor: Project Dimensions

The first thing you need to consider is the size of your project. If you’re planning a major renovation, such as an addition or a complete gut remodel, you’ll need to hire an interior designer.

Interior designers can suggest specific changes and themes depending on your lifestyle.

For example, people who embrace minimalism prefer a clean and simple aesthetic, with uncluttered surfaces and a focus on functionality. In contrast, those who lean towards rustic chic enjoy a more lived-in look, mixing antique furniture with floral elements to create warmth and personality.

So, what does this say about the people who choose each style?

Minimalists are often described as being organised and disciplined. They like things to be in their place and have a knack for making even the smallest spaces seem spacious and inviting. On the other hand, rustic-chic enthusiasts are often creative and eclectic. They enjoy mixing different styles and periods, and they’re not afraid of a little (or a lot) of clutter.

Unlike a renovation contractor, an interior designer will know how to apply these rules.

They also have experience working with architects and engineers to ensure that your plans are feasibility and meet all building code requirements

On the other hand, if you’re planning a minor renovation, such as painting or installing new flooring, you might be able to get by with a renovation contractor. Just keep in mind that they might not be able to provide the same level of design expertise as an interior designer

Interior Designer vs Renovation Contractor: Services Offered

Another thing to consider is the services offered by each professional. As we mentioned before, renovation contractors are primarily responsible for the physical work involved in a renovation, such as:

  • Demolition
  • Carpentry
  • Drywall installation
  • Plumbing

On the other hand, interior designers are responsible for the overall design of the space, such as:

  • Choosing furniture and fixtures
  • Selecting paint colours and window treatments
  • Understanding your lifestyle and preferences, even when you can’t express them in words

Interior Designer vs Renovation Contractor: Potential Changes

Interior designers treat projects like their babies. So, once the work is done and you decide you need future alteration, they’ll step up. Designers can make changes to the blueprint and 3D models so that your contractor understands what you’re trying to achieve

On the other hand, a renovation contractor might not be as flexible. If you need changes after work has already begun, it might cost you more money or time.

Interior Designer vs Renovation Contractor: Cost

Cost of renovation is a key concern for many couples in Singapore.

Finally, you’ll need to consider the cost of each professional’s services. In general, interior designers charge by the hour or by the project. Their rates will vary depending on their experience and project scope.

On the other hand, renovation contractors usually charge a flat fee for their services. This fee is typically based on the size and complexity of the project.

But seeing as interior designers offer more services, they’ll cost more than contractors.

Of course, homeowners can get an affordable fixed monthly renovation loan here.

Choosing Between An Interior Designer or Renovation Contractor


A renovation contractor is primarily concerned with the construction and physical aspects of your renovation project. They’ll handle the demolition, structural work, plumbing, and electrical work required to transform your space.

On the other hand, an interior designer focuses on the aesthetic and functional aspects of your renovation.

Here’s the thing: There are some things in life you can skimp on— a cup of coffee here, a new shirt there.

But when it comes to your home, you need to choose the right professionals for the job – or risk paying for it later down the line. That’s why choosing the right professional is essential.

If you want to lower the costs of your home renovation, you should choose a renovation contractor.

To secure extra funds for your HDB or condo renovation, apply for a larger and longer term renovation loan with us here!

About Lending Bee

In a volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous world, you can count on one thing – your partner in credit, Lending Bee. Just like an industrious bee, we are committed to helping each and every customer access credit – quickly, easily and seamlessly.