Product Reviews

Havenly Interior Design Review | A Brutally Honest Havenly Review

I previously did a comprehensive review of the online interior design service Spacejoy, which I concluded was an extremely good value. For completeness, I wanted to try out the Spacejoy competitor, Havenly. Here is a summary of my Havenly interior design experience.

I decided to first try out Havenly design service for my girls’ bedroom makeover. This room was being transformed from just my eldest daughter’s room to a room for her to share with her younger sister, who was transitioning out of a crib into a big girl bed.

I later also used Havenly to redesign our living room. Our needs have changed since my initial redesign with Spacejoy and I think my design style has changed too, so I wanted to get a fresh look for the space.

How long does Havenly online interior design take?

Overall, the process from start to finish only takes about two weeks. I’ve listed out my specific timelines below for reference. Note that while the actual Havenly design time is pretty fast, there could be a wait before your project starts. More on that below!

Havenly Girls’ Room Design Timeline

June 25, 2021: Filled out questionnaire, provided some inspiration pictures, wrote up my vision for the space

June 28: Received three design/concept boards. I loved them all!

June 30: Received the first concept based on my feedback from the three design boards.

July 6: Received final design

July 15: Received 3D rendering (comes when you purchase a full package only).

Overall, it only took about five business days (I didn’t count the holiday in between) from when I filled out the initial questionnaire to when I received my final design. That’s crazy fast! After that it took less than 1.5 weeks to get the 3D rendering, which was less important to me than the “final design” that was already delivered since I was already able to start purchasing items. The 3D rendering was just nice for kind of seeing how everything would really look in the space in “higher definition.”

Havenly Living Room Design Timeline

I guess ever since I did the girls’ room back in 2021 Havenly blew up in popularity because almost all the designers had long wait times. I almost ended up canceling my design package and trying a different service because I didn’t want to have to wait over a month to get started. Fortunately when I reached out to customer service to cancel they said they’d see what they could do to speed things up and they eventually matched me with a designer, Sofia Sesma (see her designer profile here), who ended up being amazing!

Jan 29, 2024: Purchased design package (used a Havenly coupon code and ended up paying around $109). After purchasing I found out most designers wouldn’t be available for at least another month.

Feb 1: Tried to cancel package so I could see if another design service would have a quicker turnaround time

Feb 2: They assigned me a designer who could start earlier. They gave me a new start date of February 5.

Feb 5: Designer got in touch with me saying she would start the idea boards by tomorrow.

Feb 8: Had first call with designer, Sofia, and was very impressed with the three idea boards she put together! She was really specific about making them all different and that helped me really narrow down on the style I was trying to achieve. I was extremely impressed by how easily she understood my style given I only provided three or so inspiration pictures. The best part was Sofia introduced me to the “Japandi” style (Japanese + Scandinavian) that I never really knew I loved! Once she highlighted the elements of this style (lots of natural elements, woods, minimalism, etc.), I realized this was exactly the look I was drawn to and looking to do in our entire home. Sofia really asked all the right questions to help me narrow down between the three idea boards. All this time I thought I liked contemporary and modern styles when in actuality I was never actually drawn to hard lines and sculptural finishes. During this call, Sofia also walked me through potential floor plans and how we would arrange furniture. I ended the call feeling very inspired and excited to get to the next phase!

Feb 9-12: Had several exchanges using the Havenly chat platform with some questions and feedback on furniture layout. Sofia was responsive and receptive to my questions and feedback.

Feb 12: Had second call with Sofia. She shared the concept board for my living room and it highlighted some of the main pieces she suggested we use. I was able to provide feedback on what I liked and didn’t like during this call. So many of the products she chose were things I loved but probably wouldn’t have known to look for myself, so I was happy about that. By the end of the call I was eager to start making my purchases!

Feb 15: Final designs were to be ready by this time, but some of the products didn’t have 3D versions ready so she asked to have them ready on Monday, the 19th instead. I was also going back and forth about some of the product decisions, so I totally understood the need for more time to finalize the design. Sofia was great about answering my questions and alleviating my concerns.

Feb 20: Had my final design call with Sofia (11 business days after we first started). She shared the 3D design with all the revisions we discussed. I did share that I was still hesitant about our dining chair choice and she said she’d continue to review options. We continued to use the messaging platform to finalize some details.

Feb 21: Received final final 3D design with updated product choices. I made my purchases with some last-minute help from Sofia. I ended up spending a little over $5K on furniture and decor, which was well within the budget I specified.

Before and Afters

Girls’ Room Before

Havenly Girls’ Room Design

Girls’ Room After

Living Room Before

Havenly Living Room Design

Living Room After

havenly living room
havenly living room
havenly living room

What I liked about Havenly

  • Really thoughtful designs: My living room designer, Sofia, put so much thought into my design. We were working with a slightly awkward and small space, but she really put so much thought into choosing products that would fit. Even when I would make suggestions Sofia never shied away from pushing back and offering alternatives that made more sense. I had a lot of concerns about all our wood tones working together, for example, and so I suggested maybe we just go with black chairs and a black bench. She said she understood my concern but that the black would feel to heavy. Instead, she pulled some new chair and bench options that would help us make sure the wood tones all looked cohesively together. I will say I’m sure some designers are better than others, but both of the Havenly designers I worked with were definitely better than the one I worked with at Spacejoy if I’m being honest.
  • Tiered sales: Probably one of the most surprising benefits about using Havenly design service was they frequently do these tiered sales, where you can get up to 15% off your product order (furniture, decor, etc.) after you spend a certain amount ($2500 during the sale I used). I wouldn’t have been able to get this discount if I shopped for these products on my own. They also work with most of the brands/stores I would have purchased from anyway, including Crate & Barrel, CB2, Pottery Barn, and West Elm, so it was such a bonus to get the discount.
  • Messaging platform and good apps: Throughout the project I had access to my designer and this was extremely helpful because I was very indecisive about my product choices, so I was glad I had a way to ask questions as I thought of them through their chat platform. Overall their tech and apps are pretty high quality. I think I only encountered one bug on their iPad app when I was viewing the design in full screen and I couldn’t exit out of it.
  • Great customer service: I was extremely impressed with Havenly’s customer service every time I had to reach out to them. I had to return a couple of items (one vase arrived damaged, for example) and they were so good about it each time. They even followed up to ensure I received replacement items.
  • Option to tip designer in the end: This could be an unpopular opinion, but I liked that I had the option to tip my designer in the end (completely optional). With the amount of effort and time I know when into my design, I often felt guilty that the design package was so cheap! I knew I would help make up for some of that with my furniture purchases, which my designer would get commission from, but I still wanted a way to show my appreciation beyond that, so I was glad to have this option. I think this is also a good option in case you end up not wanting to buy products from the platform but want to make sure your designer is still compensated well.

What I didn’t like about Havenly

  • Long wait times before starting: Once your project starts it moves very fast, but there could be a wait before you are able to get started. Many designers have month-long wait times, which may not work if you have an urgent project. What I’d suggest is if this is the case, try reaching out to customer service (hello@havenly.com) and see what they can do to help. They may be able to help find a designer that could work with your schedule.
  • Tiny bit of preference for their house brand: Interior Define is a furniture company acquired by Havenly and I felt like there may have been a tiny preference for couches from this company, which obviously makes sense for the business. I totally understood. I never felt pressured to make this selection (my designer was always open to providing alternates), but I did notice the preference and it did make me wonder if it was the best design choice (amongst all other possible brands). I didn’t end up buying the Interior Define couch (I purchased another one that I found on the Havenly platform and that my designer thought worked well with the design), but the Interior Define one also wasn’t a bad option and I did actually consider purchasing it.

Conclusion

I would definitely recommend the Havenly online interior design service. Havenly vs. Spacejoy? Havenly definitely has the edge for me. The quality of the designs was much higher and I felt like my designer put in much more effort. The better customer service was a huge factor too. I plan to use Havenly again for our kitchen redesign and master bedroom makeover.

Use my referral link for $50 off your first design package!

Have any questions about my Havenly experience? Feel free to leave and comment and I’d be happy to answer!

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