Buying a house is one of life’s biggest decisions. It’s where we’re (presumably) going to live the rest of our lives. It has to be perfect. So why is it also one of life’s biggest pain the in assets just to get there?
The challenges for homeowners and industry
Homeowners’ challenges are myriad in an unfamiliar area where they are wholly dependent on subject matter experts to help filter out the fluff from the facts. However, there are so many interior designers in Singapore alone, we aren’t just spoiled for choice: we’re up to our eyeballs in it. It can be hard to tell apart the smooth-talkers from the real deal. From profit-driven, smooth-talking salesmen to passionate but impractical designers, if homeowners aren’t careful, they could end up getting very little for their buck (i.e., overcharged for everything), substandard work (i.e. low quality materials), or nothing at all (i.e. getting cheated).
For the interior designer (or ID), the competition is fierce. In an industry where the demand is high, so too are the number of people and firms that operate in it. Over 2,000 IDs firms populate Singapore alone. If that wasn’t enough, to throw more salt into the wound, those don’t even include those without formal design credentials. Since there’s currently no government agency regulating the ID renovation trade, any Tom, Dick, Harry and their cat can be an ID.
Let’s be real: most of us never plan on going back to school. Once we get that cert, we move on to “greater things” and never look back. And that might be fine if the world just stood still for us right after we leave academia. But it doesn’t. There will always be something new; new methodology, new developments, new technology. Active participation between academia and the industry ensures that advancements can, respectively, be field tested and spur growth in the profession at large.
Suppliers and Vendors
Considering how much the services and goods of vendors, suppliers, and merchants directly impacts homeowners, it’s curious how little their paths cross. It’s like getting a personal shopper who won’t let you choose or even see what they’re getting at the supermarket. It’s a real shame for homeowners – don’t get the opportunity to better understand and make informed choices about what services and materials they get and use.
Overcoming the challenges
Fair price for fair services
Despite having different challenges, everyone wants one thing: a fair price without worry. SIXiDES’ goal is, and will always be, to provide a safe marketplace for homeowners where they can find the people, services, and products that fit the bill. Part of that promise involves ensuring that IDs, vendors, suppliers, merchants, and even academia, would receive their due support.
The challenge for homeowners is how to find the right ID for what they want. Where to begin? What criteria to use? Lacking in-depth knowledge about the industry, then it’d be like finding a needle in a haystack in the middle of a storm… at night. To give homeowners a fighting chance, SIXiDES offers to keep them well-informed and equipped before they even engage begin their project.
One of SIXiDES offers is a proprietary artificial intelligence that we call eQuote. No more second-guessing yourself. You tell the AI what you’re looking for and where the job is, and the system will give you an industry-standard quote on the spot along with five (robot) hand-picked IDs to choose from — IDs who have been verified for their competency and expertise.
Verified ID Scheme
For SIXiDES, Verified ID is our way of separating the wheat from the chaff. Their purpose? IDs and vendors are assigned badges based on their qualifications and specialties that help to inform you and help us to match them to your needs. For credibility, SIXiDES isn’t doing this alone – these badges are awarded in partnership with the Singapore Institute of Technology. In so doing, we not only recognise hard work and talent, but also encourage industry practitioners to continually upskill themselves and, in turn, raise industry standards.
IDs, Vendors, and Suppliers
SIXiDES recognises that standardisation may not be a sexy word, but for IDs, vendors, and suppliers, it ensures a level playing field for everyone. No undercutting. No wheeling and dealing. Fair game for everyone. And increased trust with consumers as they experience consistency, safety, and quality that standardisation brings. With increased trust, more business for everyone all around.
In order to build and support the industry, SIXiDES collaborates with academic institutions to develop and offer up subsidised programmes. Who doesn’t like a bargain, right? These would be open to industry professionals to upskill themselves and outsiders who wish to qualify and join the field. The rewards of self-improvement and training for both individuals are twofold; gaining new skills and recognition through SIXiDES’ Verified ID badges.
SIXiDES and the future
SIXiDES is all about creating an ecosystem for homeowners that is friendly and easy to use. It will be a place where they can make informed decisions. Even now, we’re developing programmes that work towards that goal. While the majority of what we do is for homeowners, SIXiDES recognises that that goal needs to work in conjunction with supporting and encouraging the industry as a whole. At present, SIXiDES’ focus is mainly trained on design and renovation for homes but worry not — our plans include extending our services to commercial projects in the near future.
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