2023 Interior Designers Salary Guide: What to Expect

As an interior designer, you can have a fulfilling and exciting career. What kind of salary could one expect? By taking into consideration factors like experience level, region, or industry sector when it comes to your earning potential as an interior designer is necessary in order for realistic expectations to be set while also allowing informed decisions regarding professional advancement. Let us take a look at the world of how much interior designers make along with other important considerations that affect salaries.

Key Takeaways

  • Interior designer salaries vary widely according to experience, location and industry.
  • Professional certifications, continuing education opportunities and a strong portfolio can help maximize earning potential in the field.
  • Luxury residential design, commercial design and sustainable design are among the top paying industries for interior designers.
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Understanding Interior Designer Salaries: A Comprehensive Overview

Interior designers in the United States have an average yearly salary of around $55,000. This amount is impacted by factors such as experience levels and sector type. For example, residential interior designer pay often falls between $47,990 and $69,000 a year while those working for government organisations can receive salaries that range from 81k-160k annually.

When it comes to compensation rates for individuals involved with interior design it’s very much dependent on what area they specialize in within the profession itself. We will be looking Into how industry sectors influence wage differentials among these professionals along with their respective location versus years of practice under their belt when examining interior designer salaries.

Experience Level Impact on Salary

The salary range of interior designers in the United States is largely determined by their experience. Entry-level professionals usually earn an annual salary around $31,970 at least. This being within the lower tenth percentile bracket for those employed in this field. With increased competencies and knowledge comes better earning potential—experienced designers can make up to 90 thousand dollars a year! Senior level workers from Grapevine TX alone boast salaries between 70K to 90K per annum which reflects how essential it is for one’s ability to gain expertise and merit so as to secure higher pay.

Geographic Location and Salary Variations

Interior designers have the potential to make substantially different salaries based on their geographic location and local demand for services. For instance, those working in New York typically earn between $39,000-54,000 per year while interior designers located in Florida average around $44k annually. The highest paying states for these professionals are Rhode Island, Oregon & California. Being aware of salary differences by region can help inform your decisions when considering where you want to work and possibly boost earnings.

Industry-Specific Salaries

Interior designer salaries, also referred to as interior design pay, differ based on the industry. Interior designers employed in healthcare typically earn an average of $70,108 while those working with commercial organizations receive a salary range between $53,500 and 70 thousand dollars annually. Sustainable designs boast their own level of compensation averaging at around 61K per year.

Knowing sector-specific wages makes it easier for aspiring or current professionals alike when deciding where they want to focus their skills within interior design, ultimately leading toward higher earnings potentials.

Global Comparison of Interior Designer Salaries

To other nations, there is a notable variation in interior designer salaries across the United States, Europe and Asia. A variety of factors like economic stability, demand for services as well as cost of living influence what wages professionals will receive for their work.

It is essential that we assess these differences so that an appropriate pay scale can be established within each region or country. To this end it becomes evident why variations appear on the national level when looking at salary trends among designers from around the world. Such discrepancies naturally must also exist on a global scale too.

United States

Interior designer salaries in the United States are variable depending on population and living costs. This is similarly true for interior decorator pay as well. The average salary each year for an American interior designer currently stands at about $66,708 annually, A wide range of wages may be observed across states due to differences in factors such as cost-of-living or population size with some offering higher income potential than others.


The pay for interior designers in Europe can vary significantly based on the country and other factors, such as economic stability and demand. Speaking, a European interior designer’s annual salary will range from around €30k to €70k depending on experience level and location.

In England, typical earnings for these professionals typically are between 33-45 thousand euros per year whereas France offers an average of 50 thousand plus annually.


The average salary of an interior designer can vary significantly from one country to another in Asia. In Singapore, these professionals make around SGD 5,075 each month while those based in China are paid ¥178,301 annually and Japanese ones have a yearly income of about ¥3,600 000.

These figures clearly illustrate the broad spectrum when it comes to wages for this profession across different regions as well as emphasize how essential it is to understand global remuneration trends if you wish to maximize your earning potential.

The Role of Education and Certification in Interior Designer Salaries

The importance of educational qualifications and certifications in influencing an interior designer’s salary is significant. Speaking, having a bachelor’s degree in the field of interior design qualifies one to fill entry level positions. Additional credentials such as NCIDQ certification can provide greater earning potential for designers. Let us now take a more detailed look at how this education affects salaries earned by professionals within the industry.

Bachelor’s Degree in Interior Design

Entry level positions in the interior design field Require a bachelor’s degree to qualify. This type of educational attainment not only imparts important knowledge and expertise needed for success as an entry-level designer, but can also have a great impact on salary potential. Interior designers who possess their bachelors typically command starting salaries that range from $68K – $102K per annum– which is significantly higher than those with lesser qualifications or experience levels may be able to earn in this field. Having such advanced education implies more skill and proficiency, which increases job possibilities plus earning capacity within the area of interior design substantially.

Professional Certifications

On average, interior designers who have obtained certifications such as the NCIDQ can expect to make $16,000 more annually than those without certification. Other certifications that are beneficial for an interior designer’s potential earning include Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED), International WELL Building Institute (IWBI), American Academy of Healthcare Interior Designers (AAHID) and American Lighting Association (ALA). Not only does having professional credentials boost a designer’s prospects but obtaining additional computer aided design qualifications provides greater opportunity for specialization which also increases their attractiveness to employers offering better salaries or new job opportunities.

Freelance Interior Designer Earnings

Interior designers who work on a freelance basis have the potential to earn more than their in-house full-time counterparts. By choosing which projects and clients they collaborate with, as well as how much effort goes into each project, freelancers can control what their hourly rate is or any fees for particular projects are determined by. These factors all influence the earning power of freelance interior designers considerably. Knowing this gives them greater flexibility when taking on such roles, meaning that not only do they gain experience but also an increased income opportunity too.

Hourly Rates

When asking about how much an interior designer costs, the rates of freelance professionals can vary from $50 to $200 per hour. The sum charged will depend on elements like their expertise and location, whether they prefer flat fees or hourly payments, existing cost living & business expenses as well as size of the project at hand plus level of experience. These factors are also influential when looking into what kind of principles determine how these designers work with clients’ interiors in mind.

Speaking beginner freelancers make an average base salary corresponding to a rate between 15-28$; median being 22$.

Project-Based Fees

Interior designers typically charge an average of $5 to $17 per square foot for all project-related services such as consultation, design, management and material costs. There is also the possibility of a flat fee depending on what type of room or job it is. It’s essential that clients discuss any fees with their designer prior to beginning work on the project. That way they can both come up with expectations and know exactly how much will be spent in advance.

Top-Paying Industries for Interior Designers

Interior designers who understand the highest-paying industries – luxury residential design, commercial design, and sustainable design, can make more strategic decisions when selecting their area of specialization in interior design which could result in greater financial rewards.

Luxury Residential Design

Interior designers working in luxury residential design, an industry that offers a higher pay than most other types of projects due to its exclusive clientele and expansive budgets, typically earn between $53,500 and $70,000 per annum. The salary is determined by factors like experience & portfolio, the reputation of clients, location, area or specialization expertise required for project completion ,and the scope of each unique job undertaken.

Commercial Design

In the commercial design industry, interior designers can often find increased salaries To other sectors. The average compensation for such specialists ranges from $51,844 up to a maximum of roughly $88,589 per annum depending on location and experience within this domain. Larger and more intricate projects tend to require greater expertise while being time-consuming. Consequently they usually provide higher remuneration for these professionals who work on them as well.

Sustainable Design

The interior design industry with a focus on sustainability is booming, and professionals specializing in this field have potential to earn substantial salaries. Ranging from $72,016 all the way up to over $100,000 per year. The median salary for these sustainable designers sits at around $68k annually – As eco-friendly practices continue to grow more popular those skilled in this area are likely witness increased earning opportunities moving forward.

Tips for Maximizing Your Interior Designer Salary

The key to obtaining the highest salary for an interior designer lies in continuing education, building professional connections and strengthening your portfolio. Becoming a senior figure within this profession can boost earning potential too.

By pursuing these goals, you will increase your market value as an experienced Interior Designer which should result in more lucrative paycheques when compared with those of less-experienced designers.

Continuing Education

Interior designers can increase their salary and job prospects by taking up continuing education courses. Such programs keep them abreast of the latest trends in the industry, as well as provide training on topics such as health, safety, welfare-related matters – all which yield higher salaries and better opportunities for employment. Some certificate classes are specifically designed to focus on residential interior design. Many organizations offer approved course curriculum such as CIDA, IDCEC AIA/ CES & USG/ GBCI that enable individuals to update or enhance existing skillsets essential for a successful career path.

Networking and Professional Associations

Interior designers can benefit from joining professional associations in terms of increasing their salary and advancing their careers. Organizations like the American Society of Interior Designers, AIA, IDS and IIDA are highly respected for providing access to valuable resources along with networking opportunities that could potentially increase one’s client base. By participating in these associations, interior design professionals will be kept up-to-date about industry trends which is essential when it comes to not just improving salaries but also pushing ahead career wise.

Building a Strong Portfolio

As an interior designer, possessing a powerful portfolio demonstrating your range of talents and projects is vital for getting higher-paying clients and furthering your career. This should comprise various elements such as pictures taken in real life, 3D renders, designs sketches & illustrations reflecting the design procedure you went through. By exhibiting to employers or customers the best work that illustrates both creativity and ability can lead to improved remuneration opportunities.


It is important to be aware of the different components that impact an interior designer’s salary in order to have a realistic idea and make wise decisions about one’s career. Various elements such as experience, location, industry sector, education level and certifications can provide insight into what kind of income you could expect within this field. With hard work and dedication along with pursuing Learning opportunities coupled with building contacts by networking plus having a well-constructed portfolio can assist anyone working in the area of interior design achieve professional success while earning sizable salaries for their efforts at the same time.

Frequently Asked Questions

What type of interior designer makes the most money?

Within the interior design industry, those with expertise and creative skill can be handsomely rewarded for their services. A Government Interior Decorator has been known to make up to $160,822 per annum. Senior Interior Designers may receive yearly salaries from anywhere between $70k-118k while Directors of such field garner wages around mid-range figures too.

Can you make good money as an interior designer?

Interior designers can make good money on average – an annual salary of $57,060 according to the U.S Department of Labor – with incomes ranging from approximately $15k per year up to as much as a possible yearly pay-out of about $132K depending upon qualifications and where they work.

What do the top 10 percent of interior designers make?

Interior designers at the upper 10 percent of their field are making over $101,550 each year – more than double what other interior designers in this profession make with an annual median wage of around $61,590. In contrast those who fall into the lowest tier would take home less than $36,610 annually.

What is the lowest salary for an interior designer?

Interior designers typically make an average yearly salary of between $35,000 and $78,000 with the standard beginning pay being at least that. The minimal income for a profession as an interior designer is then fixed at 35K annually.

What is the average salary for an interior designer in the United States?

The typical yearly earnings of interior designers in the US is usually around $55,000 on average.