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ASID report forecasts trends, issues impacting the design industry

WASHINGTON, D.C. - The American Society of Interior Designers (ASID) has issued its 2013 Environmental Scanning Report, an annual report on design industry demographics and a trend forecast for the year ahead.

Report highlights include:

Interior design billings on the rebound: ASID began tracking interior design billings in November 2010. Billings foremost of 2010-2011 declined but began to rebound in 2012. The residential index at the end of 2012 stood at 55.9, marking four straight months of growth - a level that has not been seen since late 2005.

Further, according to the most recent U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics report, there were approximately 40,950 employed interior designers in the United States in May 2011 - a 2% increase over 2010 and the first increase since 2008. In this same period, the mean annual wage for interior designers rose 3.5%.

The New Normal: While the economy may be recovering, economists question what the profile of the emerging consumer will look like. Most trends point toward a mix of value-conscious, socially connected and empowered consumers who will expect more personalization and long-term value from their purchases and transactions. Service providers and manufacturers will be challenged to respond to the motivations and desires of the new consumer in order to maintain relevance.

Implications for the interior design industry

Technology and business - social and mobile: Technology continues to play a major role in the consumer/designer dynamic. In a "word-of-click world" where consumers are increasingly using their devices to research products, check reviews and price points, designers who adapt will find opportunities to build their practice and create interactive environments that respond to an increasingly empowered, mobile clientele. Along with technology, online communities are increasingly becoming a critical venue to display work and exchange ideas creating new business models.

Next housing boom: Rising home values, increased sales transactions, low interest rates, increase lending and more prospective buyers will continue to create opportunity for designers in a recovering market. As Baby Boomers begin to downsize and Millennials start buying their first homes, the design industry should prepare to meet the needs of a rapidly changing population.

The full ASID 2013 Environmental Scanning Report can be downloaded here.

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