The five lakh Labyrinth!

The phone rings and she picks my call. A small intro follows. Finally I ask her the most crucial but appalling question. How much have you allocated for interiors for your apartment?
She pauses and replies….Well , I don’t know. Please give me your best estimate . But to be frank, I don’t want to exceed five lakhs. I hear it right. I check check check with her….for the list of specifications and requirements that you have given….you want that to be completed within five simple lakhs, right Ms. Client? YES YES YES….there she goes.

The phone rings and I pick up the call. A long intro by him and then a short intro by me follows. Floor plans, specifications, members in the family, timeline, our credibility check etc follows. After the half an hour very serious conversation, I ask him…..Any budget? A long Ahhhhhhhhh…..and then followed by Wellllll….I want to close it for five lakhs. I have fifteen quotes under five lakhs, you know!

The phone rings and he picks up the call and says, Can I call you later? I sound professional and say, Oh Sure!
Second follow up call in the evening since the prospective client is a good friend of an existing client. And he answers the call and cordially apologises. This time round, A long intro by me followed by a crisp and short intro with clarity by Mr. Client. I am impressed. There is hope at the end of the tunnel ( day). I now ask the most controversial question…..BUDGET. Mr. Client sounds honest again. He says, he doesn’t understand the market. He wishes to study my estimate in detail and then come up with the figure he should allocate for interiors. Great! That sounds perfect, I heaved an euphoric sigh of relief.
And…..he continued, people say, 5 to 6 lakhs would be good enough for interiors.

A long day at work, some heavy five lakh calculations and a hot cup of milk to boost my calcium intake is sufficient for me to doze off into a deep sleep. And these days, guess what my dreams are made of….
A beautiful kitchen with all the appliances intact, and the lovely quartz stone counter top if budget permits….do not forget the sooooo functional chef’s pantry which will take care of all the lentils, grains and groceries. Hey, I see two decent sized wardrobes in pastel shades with a neatly tucked in small study table . I watch TV in an elaborate minimalistically arranged living room. I see the TV layered by textured panels and wall papers. There is this stone cladding too at the entry wall. Lights focussed on the cladding through the elegantly done false ceiling( remember minimalism). I can see myself all over the place now, as my dream progresses. I sit in the high stool of the simple bar unit and look at my relection in the glass shelves of the crockery unit. The vanity boxes in the bathrooms and the storage in the work area are so compact and tucked in . They have a life time warranty, you know! And I am so thankful for all this that I pray to the almighty sitting right there in the high stool and looking through the glass of the sim(b)ple Pooja unit that’s got a decent place between the bar and the wash basin. But yeah, Pooja units never share a wall with a bathroom, you know! Vastu compliant interiors please, though I don’t mind anything, MOM has the last say!

Its complicated, but I will find a way out of this ( 5 lakhs) labyrinth 🙂

PS: With due respects to all my Ms and Mr. Clients who had the trust in us to cross the five lakh labyrinth, and with due respects to all my clients who got tangled in the labyrinth ……
Every body out here in the industry will make profit at the end. Yes, we don’t like to be conned by anybody. So check the credibility of the vendor/ designer before you assign the work to them. But please do remember that there is a price for every good and bad thing out there. Recognise the quality and quantity before you put a price tag on it. Yes, you may have a budget and you must look out for value for the money spent. And Watch us….we are here to last!

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