Interior Designer Salary

The national average salary for Interior Designers is $43K per year; Self-Employed pays the most in this field, though, offering a median salary of $104K. Other big spenders include EwingCole, NBBJ, and IA, Interior Architects, Inc, top-paying firms where Interior Designers see paychecks nearing $59K, $55K, or $54K. This report is based on answers to PayScale's salary questionnaire.
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$30,526 - $62,062
(Median)
$31K
$43K
$62K
MEDIAN: $42,896
10%
50%
90%

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$12.12 - $32.77
(Median)
$12
$18
$33
MEDIAN: $18.00
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$22K$44K$66K
Salary
$30,526 - $62,062  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $5,084  
Profit Sharing
$350.00 - $5,711  
Commission
$0.00 - $17,524  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$30,168 - $64,713  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 2 Jul 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 3,953
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$13$26$39
Hourly Rate
$12.12 - $32.77  
   
Overtime
$14.92 - $37.92  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$26K$52K$78K
Bonus
$0.00 - $5,084  
   
Commission
$0.00 - $17,524  
Profit Sharing
$350.00 - $5,711  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$30,168 - $64,713  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 2 Jul 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 1,349
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Job Description for Interior Designer

Most of the time, interior designers work for home or office builders. However, they may have their own businesses. Interior designers must be able to create a space that is aesthetic, functional, and safe. They work to enhance the quality of living or working environment. They must make sure that living or working spaces have appropriate colors, lighting, and decoration. They must follow their client’s instructions. They must be good listeners and must be able to attend to the specific needs of their clients. They are involved in all aspects of the design process.

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Interior Designer Tasks

  • Estimate material requirements and costs, and present design to client for approval.
  • Coordinate with other professionals, such as contractors, architects, engineers and plumbers.
  • Plan, design, and furnish interiors of residential, commercial, or industrial buildings.
  • Subcontract fabrication, installation, and arrangement of carpeting, fixtures, accessories, draperies, paint and wall coverings, art work, furniture, and related items.

Common Career Paths for Interior Designer


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At the upper end, Interior Designers who move into a Design Director of Interior Design role can end up with a hefty increase in pay. The average income for Design Directors of Interior Design is a much higher $71K per year. Career advancement for the typical Interior Designer often leads to becoming a Senior Interior Designer or an Interior Design Project Manager; median salaries in these positions are $17K higher and $8K higher, respectively.

Interior Designer Job Listings

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Popular Employer Salaries for Interior Designer

Popular Skills for Interior Designer


Survey respondents exploit a significant toolbox of skills in their work. Most notably, skills in Project Management, Technical Specification, Autodesk Revit Architecture, and Microsoft Office are correlated to pay that is above average. Skills that pay less than market rate include Sales and 3D Rendering. Those proficient in AutoCAD are, more often than not, also skilled in Design and 3D Rendering. Those educated in Adobe Photoshop tend to be well versed in 3D Rendering and Design.

Pay by Experience Level for Interior Designer

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.


For many Interior Designers, extensive experience does not lead to significantly more money. Although individuals who have less than five years' experience earn $39K on average, people with five to 10 years benefit from a notably larger average of $48K. After working for 10 to 20 years, Interior Designers make a median salary of $53K. Folks who have racked up more than 20 years in the field report incomes that aren't that much higher than less experienced individuals' earnings; the veterans make just $58K on average.

Pay Difference by Location


With a pay rate for Interior Designers that is 28 percent greater than the national average, San Francisco offers a comfortable salary for those in this profession. Interior Designers will also find cushy salaries in New York (+20 percent), Boston (+20 percent), Washington (+18 percent), and Seattle (+16 percent). Trailing the national average by 4 percent, Denver is the market with the smallest paychecks. Portland and Atlanta are a couple other places where companies are known to pay below the median — salaries are 3 percent lower and 2 percent lower, respectively.

Interior Designer Reviews

What is it like working as an Interior Designer?

Interior Designer in Lynden:
"Creative, changing challenging."
Pros: I like the level of creativity. I enjoy traveling for work and the relationships built with vendors and reps. There are events and trade shows that are rewarding and fun. My hours are flexible, the company culture is good.
Cons: There is a lot of process work for each job. The selection and review process can be endless. The client dictates so much of the outcome it's easy to loose your design intent. Can put in 65 hours weeks in a row.

Interior Designer in Houston:
"Fast paced driven field of work. Multi tasking is a must."
Pros: Creating healthier environments for people to enjoy as well as educating the client on sustainable practices.
Cons: The cut throat budgeting to compete with Chinese prices for manufacturing furniture/fabric/lighting.

Interior Designer in Denver:
"Increasingly Interactive And Technical."
Pros: Continual exposure to ever changing technology, ability to create your own path of specialty whether it be renderings, space planning, detailing, construction documents or a mix of all. I enjoy the creative people I work with and the design process. It's fun to see where you started and where you end up on each idea, each process, and each project.
Cons: The management can be tough, the hours can be unforgiving, the pay is typically lower that expected/desired. Lots of time sitting at a computer. Though a creative industry, depending on your firm size and management type you may never really get to push your own creative ideas out the door. That is the most depressing thing when you are a highly creative person.

Interior Designer in Scottsdale:
"So Far, So Good."
Pros: I love the atmosphere, I love working in a field I'm passionate about, I love the constant opportunity to learn. I love the creativity.
Cons: The pay.

Interior Designer in Anchorage:
"Corporate Culture."
Pros: Employees, flexible schedule, project opportunities, CEU opportunities, office conditions, variety of new projects and challenges, no day is exactly the same,
Cons: Below average pay, some management, CEU opportunities have been lowered, not enough opportunities to move up in the company, no raises for inflation, no bonuses.

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Experience Affects Interior Designer Salaries




National Average
$43,000


Skills That Affect Interior Designer Salaries


Technical Specification
up arrow 4%

Autodesk Revit Architecture
up arrow 3%

Microsoft Office
up arrow 2%

Design
up arrow 1%

Adobe Photoshop
up arrow 1%

Microsoft Excel
up arrow 1%

Adobe Illustrator
up arrow 1%

Computer Aided Drafting & Design (CADD)
up arrow 1%

AutoCAD
0%

Adobe InDesign
0%

AutoCAD Architecture
0%

National Average
$43,000

Computer Aided Design (CAD)
up arrow 2%

3D Rendering
up arrow 3%

up arrow 6%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 941 votes.

Gender

Female
93 %
Male
7 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
4%
1-4 years
45%
5-9 years
31%
10-19 years
15%
20 years or more
6%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 71% dental benefits Dental: 50%
vision benefits Vision: 34% employee benefits None: 27%
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