The ASID Interior Design Billings Index is a snapshot of the health of the interior design industry.
It is produced by the ASID Research department in partnership with Jack Kleinhenz, Ph.D., and Russ Smith, Ph.D., both of Kleinhenz & Associates. The index, which was begun in November 2010, is a diffusion index compiled from a monthly ASID survey of 300 geographically diverse firms that primarily offer interior design services or offer interior design services as part of architectural, engineering, and other related practices. Resulting perspectives on current and future business conditions for the interior design industry are helpful indicators of changes in the direction of economic activity. The ASID indices are centered on a score of 50 (above 50 indicates expansion and below 50 contraction).
First quarter ASID survey results show positive momentum and the overall trend remains positive.
The March ASID IDBI score is 62.8, a clear advantage over December’s value of 52.9. The March index is stronger than its three-month moving average of 59, indicating strong momentum and signaling sturdy revenue gains (score of 50 or above). The new project inquiry rate rose to 58, up from a December score of 53.3.
Strong demand for interior design services across the four size cohorts.
Design firms of all sizes enjoyed positive billings in March and had scores above their three-month moving average reflecting ongoing business strength. Sole practitioner design firms reported a strong March IDBI score of 60.9, higher than any scores from the previous 12 months. Firms with two to nine employees reported an even stronger score of 63.8.
ASID firms in all regions report growth during the first quarter.
Design firms across all regions showed billing growth relative to low January scores suggesting business conditions strengthened. Scores ranged from 59 in the West to 66 in the Northeast.
Billing results are positive across all market specializations, except the Institutional sector.
Billings for design firms specializing in single-family and multifamily residential sectors have gained since December, posting scores of 63 and 56. Commercial sector interior designers reported no change in billings from February to March. Those serving the Institutional sector reported a decline in billings over the month with a score of 40.
Six-month outlook – stronger business conditions expected.
The ASID six-month interior design business conditions index, the Conference Board’s expectations index and the Dodge Momentum Index reflect an improving broader economy and that spending for design services should continue over the next six months. Looking forward, the design industry remains optimistic about the near term outlook for business conditions. The six-month business conditions index score of 63.4 for March was virtually unchanged from the December score of 63.6 and markedly higher than September (59) and June (57) scores.