So your house is built. The walls are up. The glass railed staircase is installed (find examples here). The doors and windows have been installed. It finally looks like a house, well except there's nothing in it. There's no color on the walls. No furniture, no accents, the floors are bare and the only artificial light comes from naked light bulbs with pull strings, popular with horror movies the world over. Someday you'd like to turn that back room into an office where you can trade commodity funds with a view of the garden. But how do you get there, especially if you don't know cerulean from powder blue or the benefits of laminate flooring vs. real hardwood? Just what exactly are the differences between the two?
This is the point where you need to hire a designer - when you have a house but you need help turning it into a home. Some people hire the designer while the house plans are still being drawn up, others wait until the property has taken shape. There are a variety of ways to make your new property livable that include interior decorating, interior design, and landscaping. There are many firms and individuals who work in these fields. All you have to do is reach out and talk to one, but first you need to figure out what it is you want done, because that will effect who you hire.
For instance, interior designers can work in everything from prefab houses to brand new suburban houses that haven't even had their staircases built. Interior designers don't just deal in throw rugs and new coats of paint like their interior decorator counterparts, they're actually trained in design, carpentry, and basic electrical wiring in order to completely revamp or outfit the inside of a house. They can take out your straight staircase and replace it with a spiral one, knock down walls and put up others, or install your new kitchen cabinetry.
Interior decorators, on the other hand are the people you turn to if you want help matching your home to your personality. They can help you choose which rooms will be used for which purposes, your color schemes, wall coverings, flooring, furniture and accent lighting. They can supply you with matching fabric pillows to compliment the humongous fish tank you had them install in the kitchen pass-through and find great antiques for your Victorian-themed living room. They work strictly with accents and decorations, so don't look for them to do any carpentry or electrical work.
And finally, you have landscapers. Landscapers are another type of designer who will help turn your house into a home. Obviously you won't have much use for a landscaper if you're living on the 15th floor of a condo building, since the only outdoor greenery you'll have are the herbs growing on your balcony, but they can be invaluable to suburban homeowners, especially if they've bought into a new development and the yards are either dirt or boring sod. Landscapers plant, prune and transplant you garden greenery to get the look you want that's supportable in your climate.