You don’t want interior design to be an impersonal and outdated nuisance to be taken care of; you want the designers to understand the aura you want your house to exude and replicate it better than you ever imagined it. To do this they have to be top tier and they have to listen to you. At Décor Aid they are doing just that. With their personal, modern and creative touch, they actually talk out ideas with their customers and leave no stone unturned. Just Check out there website and you’ll fall in love in seconds.
CEO Sean Juneja talks with AlleyWatch about their incredible traction in their first year and how they are separating themselves from the pack.
Tell us about the product or service.
Décor Aid, an innovative interior design firm, uses proprietary technology and top-tier interior designers to make high-end design easy, efficient and accessible to all. The firm is based in New York, with offices in Washington, DC, Boston, Chicago, Miami, San Francisco and Philadelphia and London is scheduled to launch January 1, 2016.
The Décor Aid process is simple and seamless. Once clients book a consultation, they are put in touch with our team who guides them through the entire Décor Aid experience from start to finish. Their designer gets to know them and their space, and helps define their design needs and offer guidance on how best to move forward. We put together a detailed proposal that outlines the hours for the project and sets the design fee; that amount is honored throughout the process in order to make this a completely transparent, approachable service for our client. Whether it’s a simple room refresh, a kitchen renovation, or furnishing a home from scratch, we partner with our clients every step of the way.
How is it different?
Décor Aid separates itself from the competition in five key ways:
- Expert Interior Designers. We offer clients access to an in-house, full-time team of interior designers. They’ve been hand-selected from the country’s most distinguished firms and bring an unparalleled level of expertise, technical skill and an educated eye to every project.
- Unrivaled Customer Service. One of the many ways we are changing the interior design industry is by providing a dedicated customer service team, available by email or phone seven days a week.
Accessible To All. The Décor Aid model is straightforward: clients choose a flat hourly rate ($150 for a senior designer, $100 for a junior designer) and a certain number of hours, and then a budget for purchases based on the designer’s estimate. This transparent model means we can tackle projects of any size or budget, and makes high-end design available to everyone. With locations in 7 cities and our virtual design service, we’re available across the country.
- Exclusive Discounts. We’ve negotiated bigger discounts with hundreds of retailers and offer access to trade-only vendors and showrooms. No markups or hidden fees mean the savings is passed directly to the client, and the design service pays for itself.
- Network of Professionals. Clients gain access to our little black book of professionals. We’ve vetted the country’s best contractors, craftsmen and workrooms to secure quality, affordable service for every job.
What market are you attacking and how big is it?
The interior design market, which is over $10B in the US and over $10B in Europe.
What is the business model?
To offer quality interior design services and streamline the design process. We achieve this by using sophisticated technology and unrivaled customer service.
Can this be a sustainable business given the likelihood of infrequent recurring clientele?
Without any formal marketing or public relations outreach, Décor Aid has completed over 800 projects since we went live in June 2014. The high demand has led to our rapid expansion to six cities. We provide a rare product – the best industry talent delivering high-end design for 80% less cost than our competitors.
What inspired you to start this business?
Markus and I met a decade ago as colleagues in London. After we both relocated to New York, we discovered that accessing great interior design was far too complicated and expensive. Thus, Decor Aid was born: to bring the traditional interior design business model into the 21st century.
What are the milestones that you plan to achieve within six months?
We will continue to offer extremely accessible, sophisticated design and customer service to our clients while we expand the business.
If you could be put in touch with one investor in the New York community who would it be and why?
Shana Fisher. We truly respect her achievements and direct approach to investing. It would be an honor to meet her.
Why did you launch in New York?
We love New York and live here. Aside from that, it is a natural choice given it is the design epicenter of the world and home to the best talent in the industry.
What is your favorite winter activity in NYC?
We have yet to pay a visit to the new Whitney Museum, so we’re looking forward to checking it out and grabbing a bite at Untitled. Of course, like many New Yorkers and tourists alike, we can’t help but admire the window displays at Bergdorf’s- the level of artistry is always inspiring. We also look forward to the Winter Antiques Show and NY NOW in January to help break up the winter and inform our upcoming design projects.