Honestly, I think it will end up being almost entirely like LOTROs.
Hooks, and it being such a hassle to go/to from it that no one bothers after the novelty wears off.
Well to be honest the hook system is great (keep reading) for lazy (or clueless) players.
Fact is not everyone is a great house decorator, so such system would help them, a lot.
Now as with everything, the first time you try it you are a bit lost/worried/exited.
So you usually go the safe route or do it with experienced (enough) people.
Then you want to go further and try new things/places... experience or
get bored really fast and well go find out a new mate to pair with
So SWTOR without free item placement, whatever the awesomeness of the palaces, would look dull in the long term.
Remember how people liked how we could "furnish" garden in LotRo, to end not long after with the most decried system.
So regarding SWTOR past and Eric Musco
Placing of decorations may work a bit differently than some might expect and as such we would like to show you. To your own point, we have to manage expectations and I would hate to have me explain it since that won't really do it justice.
One can be worried it will end as the PvE and PvP space game i.e. a feature that could have been great, boring in the end and ruined by the lack of a core feature.
P.S.: I'd say if the hook system is already done, then keep it as some will find it useful, but add and advanced edition mode with free item placement and all the bell and whistles like roll and scale.