Kitchen and bathroom retailers which concentrate on selling rather than designing are to blame for costly call-backs, according to an online chat with our readers today. They suggested not enough emphasis was being placed on the importance of good design in high street showrooms.
Mostlybathrooms wrote: “Many ‘designers’ are actually people who work in shops selling…” And the Federation of Kitchen & Bathroom Designer (fkbd_garry) agreed, stating: “It’s all a consequence of the retail trades’ emphasis on free design.”
The readers agreed that a good kitchen and bathroom designer needs to have a basic understanding of house construction, as well as product training. They further suggested standards be set for all kitchen and bathroom designers, although it was uncertain whether this was through qualification or certification.
A panel of industry representatives was cited as the best way to set industry standards, with suggestions spanning award-winning designers, manufacturers, distributors and even Sarah Beeny.
Although interior business jcinteriors argued: “[The] problem with installers is they can be a bit negative, want an easy solution rather than stunning design.” And freelance kitchen designer Majjie added: “If it’s about design, it has to be designers judging – not manufacturers or installers.”
However, there was also a concern that return service visits, for example fixing a kitchen door once it has settled following building work, could be misconstrued as a call-back.
The readers concurred the industry needed a training course to deliver competent people to plan and sell kitchens and bathrooms.
However, aside from manufacturer training days, few were aware of the training already on offer, including courses verified by the KBB National Training Group.
For a full version of this feature, ensure you receive the September issue of Kitchens & Bathrooms News.