How to Become an Interior Designer in Florida
Individuals with a creative eye may be able to enjoy a rewarding career as an interior designer in the state of Florida.
Interior designers play a vital part in making indoor spaces safe, functional, and beautiful.
These workers use different colors, materials, and interior furnishings to create a space that aligns with their client’s vision.
Education and Training
Aspiring interior designers must receive a four-year degree from an accredited institution. Students may begin their education at a trade school or vocational college before moving on to a four-year institution.
While in school, students will learn about concepts such as:
- Interior design technology
- Space planning
- Furniture design
- Color theory
- Blueprint drawing
Cost of Interior Design Education
The cost of an education in Florida may differ, especially depending on which path a person chooses to take. However, those looking to attend a four-year college can expect to pay upwards of 20k. Costs may increase if a person is from out of state.
Earning a Certification
Getting a certification from a technical college, vocational school, or online program can be a good first step on your journey to becoming an interior designer. Since most jobs require a four-year degree, you will need to continue your education after the completion of your certification.
You can earn some interior design certifications in under a year.
Attending an Interior Designer Program
Whether you start at a trade school or begin your education at a four-year institution, completing an interior design program is a necessary part of joining the profession.
How Long Does It Take?
Most interior design jobs in the state of Florida require a person to have completed an accredited four-year interior design program.
Students can begin their education at a trade school or other post-secondary institution while achieving an associate degree or certification as a way to save money before continuing at a four-year college or university.
Florida Interior Designer Requirements
Unlike some other states, Florida requires a person to be licensed to work as an interior designer. Individuals who want to become licensed in FL must pass the National Council for Interior Design (NCIDQ) exam. In order to be able to take the test, you must have a four-year interior design degree that is accredited by the Council for Interior Design Accreditation (CIDA).
In addition to having a four-year degree, a person looking to take the NCIDQ must also have two years of full-time work experience, which they can receive while working under a professionally licensed interior designer.
The NCIDQ Exam
The NCIDQ exam is made up of three sections:
- The Interior Design Fundamentals Exam
- The Interior Design Professional Exam
- The Practicum Exam
Test-takers must pay an application fee of $225 as well as an additional fee for each exam.
Interior Designer Salaries in FL
How Much Can You Make?
An interior designer can be a profitable profession for those with the right training. For individuals wondering about an interior designer salary in Florida, the answer can vary.
Factors such as experience, region, and whether the designer is self-employed or works for a company.
A few salaries you may be able to earn as an interior designer in FL are:
- Miami $48,692
- Orlando $47,658
- Jacksonville $47,703
- Clearwater $47,557
- Tampa $47,753
Interior designers are responsible for ensuring that indoor spaces are beautiful, safe, and functional. These workers use decorative items, lighting, and color to create spaces that adhere to a client’s vision. Designers also need to be able to read, draw, and edit blueprints as well as know building codes, inspection regulations, and accessibility standards.
Some roles that a person with an interior design background can fill are:
- Interior Designer
- Interior Design Assistant
- Space Planner
What Do They Do?
Some of the specific tasks that an interior designer may be responsible for are:
- Work with the client to determine requirements for the project
- Consider how the space will be used, whether residential or commercial
- Sketch design plans
- Choose materials and furnishings for the space
- Create a timeline and budget for a specific project
- Place orders for all necessary materials
- Oversee installation of materials and design elements
- Oversee constructions and coordinate with building contractors
- Visit project site after completion to ensure client is happy
- Search for and bid on new projects
Interior designer jobs are expected to be on the rise in the immediate future. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, interior designer jobs should increase by approximately one percent from 2021-2031. This will add an additional 8,000 jobs per year across the country, meaning an increase in interior designer jobs in Florida for qualified individuals.
These new jobs will come available because of several factors. The industry will need more interior designers as more homeowners and companies need these individuals to design creative, safe, and functional work and home spaces. Older workers are also expected to retire during this time, while some interior designers will likely leave the field to transfer to a different occupation.