Consumer Information

Certified Interior Designers and Their Services


What is a New York Certified Interior Designer?

A Certified Interior Designer (CID) licensed in New York plans, designs, supervises and/or consults on various aspects of interior spaces including:

  • layouts and planning of interior construction
  • furnishings and fixtures
  • cabinetry, lighting and finishes
  • other aspects of interior construction not materially related to the main structural building components or systems

To safeguard people and property, certified interior designers incorporate construction, fire, safety and accessibility codes and data into their design services.


When would I use the services of a certified interior designer?

You might employ a CID to plan and design the interior space of a new or existing house or business. The CID will consider your needs as well as environmental safety laws, building and fire codes, accessible-design regulations, and historic preservation factors. Certified interior designers work to integrate design solutions with informed selections from a range of product resources and services.


What services do New York certified interior designers offer?

New York CIDs work with you to create home and business environments that project your desired image while allowing for changing requirements, functionality, comfort, and efficiency. Their services include the following:

  • schematic design and development
  • space planning
  • complete interior design specifications
  • working drawings
  • project monitoring and post-occupancy review

In providing these and related services, certified interior designers ensure that all fire codes, flammability ratings, and other safety and product issues are addressed.


What credentials does a New York Certified Interior Designer have?

A licensed New York CID has earned at least 7 years of education/experience credit and has passed a 12.5 hour national licensing examination. With the exception of those who applied for licensure prior to January 1, 1996, certified interior designers have at least a two year associate's degree from an interior design program registered by the State Education Department (or its equivalent) and have earned qualifying experience as interior designers.


What should I expect as a client of a certified interior designer?

You should expect to be provided with:

  • a description of the designer's qualifications;
  • names of former clients as references;
  • a clear and complete description of the work that will be done and the products that will be delivered;
  • a project schedule, including terms of payment; and,
  • final plans, specifications and reports that contain the signature of the certified interior designer.

The CID can provide complete project services, including project planning, design, supervision, and inspection.


What can I do to ensure a good professional relationship with my certified interior designer?

Make your needs known as clearly as possible; ask questions if you are unsure about any elements of the project. It is also in your best interest to have a written contract that contains the following:

  • description of the work to be done;
  • work schedule;
  • a description of the completed products, including drawings, schedules and data; and
  • the amount and terms of payment of the designer's compensation.

How do I locate a certified interior designer?

Check under "Interior Decorators and Designers" in the yellow pages of your telephone book. You may also call professional organizations for assistance in identifying their members who may specialize in your area of need.

The State Board for Interior Design cannot refer you to a practitioner.


What questions should individuals with disabilities ask about accessing services?

Ask such questions as whether the service location is physically accessible (curb cuts, ramps, restrooms, etc.) as well as whether there is a Telecommunication Device for the Deaf (TDD) and parking for people with disabilities.


Are client records confidential?

Yes, in general. New York certified interior designers are required by the Rules of the Board of Regents to keep confidential any personally identifiable facts, data or information obtained in a professional capacity unless the client has given prior consent to release this information.


Verifying a New York License

New York interior designers must display a current New York registration certificate; this certificate lists the professional's name, address, and dates of the registration period. Interior designers must reregister every three years to practice in New York. Some professionals also display their original New York license, diploma, licenses from other states, and membership certificates. You may verify an individual's license and registration on this site.

Last Updated: May 19, 2009