Custom Home Design – Software For the Do-It-Yourselfer!

If a new custom home is in your future, consider doing at least the preliminary designs yourself. Of course you have no doubt already looked at countless home designs in magazines, but none fit your bill – exactly.

With today’s technology, computer drawing software has been made extremely user friendly. There are a number of design software options available that the complete novice can quickly manage. And many of these programs are powerful enough for professional designers as well.

Simple and professional. What could be better for your own do-it-yourself custom home design software? Now you can take the best ideas of all of those plans that you have been browsing over and try to incorporate them into your special home.

Many of these software programs offer simple “drag-and-drop” features. This speeds up the design process considerably and allows you more time to do the more important design tasks like bathroom designs and kitchen designs and closet designs…..

Now designers, architects and builders will do this work for – FOR A PRICE. But it may take a few generations of drawings to get to your desired home design. And we all know that time is money!

You will gain a great deal of insight into your home when you design it yourself. You will look at space requirements and flows that you may otherwise disregard if designed by someone else. And some of the small but important spaces – closet, linen storage, laundry, even kitchen cupboard spaces – will get the extra attention that you deem is required.

Having this kind of input into your special new home design will be exciting and self-satisfying as well. Imagine having you friends over raving about a particular design feature and being able to say “That was MY design idea”.

Now you will likely still have to engage someone to produce the construction set of drawings, but the design is still YOURS. And you will truly end up with a custom home designed especially for you.

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User Friendly Software Home Design – Your Custom Home

Although it was released way back in 2005, Your Custom Home still remains to be one of the best and most user-friendly software home design applications around. Designed and developed by ValuSoft, this easy-to-use program offers an exceptional room design feature that will definitely be a hit for beginner users. However, this particular program might not be as fit for serious designers, and those that actually do this for a living.

Tools and Features

What makes Your Custom Home unique is that the first step of designing involves picking the shape of one’s room. That is, the user will need to decide whether he’d like to have a square, rectangular, or perhaps even a T-shaped room. After which, the user will have an option to easily resize the walls, but the program doesn’t allow the alteration of the actual room shape.

One will need to restart the entire process if he realizes that he wants another shape for a particular room. The good news is that there is an additional feature on board that allows users to create their own shapes if they aren’t able to find one that they like in the default selection menu.

However, one of the biggest issues with Your Custom Home is that it doesn’t come with an integrated landscaping program. One will need to purchase a separate application if gardening is included in the remodeling process.

Ease of Use

As mentioned earlier, what sets this home design software apart is that it is very user friendly. Beginners will have a blast with this program as it provides a user-friendly alternative for those that do not have experience in design. Once users go through the extensive tutorials included in the program, designing and modeling one’s own home should be as easy as pie. The tutorials provide step-by-step instructions of the program’s major features. The layout and interface of the application are also quite intuitive, making it quite easy to master after a few hours of practice.

Final Word

Your Custom home is definitely one of the best options for those that are looking for a user friendly application that will be able to deliver usable results. At only $19.99, it also happens to be one of the cheapest in the business. However, serious users would be better off with other mor

Start Your Home Design Using These Home Design Tools

You’ve decided you want to build a new home. Where do you start? First, we suggest you purchase your land, as this will surely impact the design of your home. Second, start putting your ideas together before visiting your architect.

Start with a vision of your new home. Is there a certain architectural style you prefer? Colonial? Cape? Saltbox? Farmhouse? From there, start with the basics in home design. How many bedrooms will you need? Do you want a Master Bedroom with or without a Master Bathroom suite? Will it be located on the first or second floor? If this is a vacation home which will become your retirement home, you may prefer to have the main rooms located on the first floor for easy access in later years. Do you want a large, eat-in kitchen or a separate dining room?

Are you planning to entertain small or large groups of people in your home? Is a cathedral Great Room on your list of priorities? Will you need a living room or media room separate from your Great Room? Do you have a specific hobby or interest that requires a separate room or area?

Compare all of these areas with your current home. Does the space you have now fit your needs? Write down the measurements of your space and then mark whether or not the space is adequate. Wherever possible, look for areas to reduce the living space. For instance, if you have a large laundry room now and you only really use half of the space, mark it as a potential space saver. Anytime you reduce the square footage of your new home you will save money in initial material costs, but in energy costs over the life of the home as well.

A home fulfills many purposes, but it can also satisfy numerous personal, aesthetic, and emotional requirements that can be difficult to describe in words. In starting to imagine your home design, it will help your architect if you identify and communicate how you want each space to feel. How?

You may find it a challenge to explain how you want a room to feel. Start by doing some simple exercises. Pick up a home magazine or imagine a home you are familiar with. Find a room you like. What do you like about it? The way the afternoon sunlight casts shadows within the room? The room’s intimacy or its abundant space?

Think about other spaces you enjoy – the park, the library, your friend’s home. How does the space make you feel? What creates that feeling? Be specific, and write down what you like about it. For instance, you might write, “I like how the room’s color tones change as the sun sets” or “I love how the outdoors is brought inside”. These small realizations will help the home design to evolve from a floor plan to a custom home that is an extension of your life philosophy.

Do this for each room in your home design. It is also helpful to describe what you don’t like about certain floor plans, rooms, or space. For instance, if you are not fond of having to walk through your closet to enter your Master Bedroom, document this. Perhaps you like the great room in a magazine photo but you don’t like the television being the center of attention. Or, you may like the space but find it lacks the intimacy you’re looking for in your home – a cozy corner where you can chat with another couple, a well-lit reading area, or a secluded spot for your cell phone chargers, mail and telephone. Keep all of your notes together. Cut out full pages or small photos that describe your likes and dislikes. As you go through this process, you can update your thoughts with text and photos. Eventually, you will come to a good understanding of what you want your custom home to look and feel like. Bring your notebook to your first meeting with your architect. Starting with your vision in hand will expedite the design process while guaranteeing success.

Your custom home architect will spend time with you to guide you through this process and will translate your ideas into a preliminary design for your consideration and review. The result will be much more than a home with a standard floor plan – you will have a custom home design that matches your philosophy and lifestyle, a reflection of who you are, your dreams and aspirations.

Easy to Do Home Design and Decor

Whether you have just bought your first starter home or have upgraded to your dream house, the overall design of the home as well as the decor can be the single greatest way to showcase your personal sense of style and taste. Designing a home and choosing decor can be an expensive and time consuming proposition; however, for those on a shoe-string budget, it is still possible to create the look you want without breaking the bank. Making a few wise decisions early on and sticking with your plan will help ensure your complete your home makeover on budget whether that budget is $100 per room or $5,000.00 per room.

Creating an overall plan is the first step towards a unified home design. Utilizing your own tastes, decorating magazines and books and some of the excellent home decor television shows, think about what you would like to showcase. Determine what your overall decor theme will be. Are you contemporary or traditional? Do your taste lean towards fussy or minimalism? These answers can serve as a jumping off point as you begin to design your home.

One of the easiest ways to begin working on your overall home design or even a simple redecorating project is to develop a plan and there is no better way to do so than by using simple software designed to help you move from layout and color palette to accents and furniture pieces seamlessly. The HGTV Home Design and Remodeling Suite is fully loaded with features that make remodeling even the fussiest of rooms easy. The software can help you utilize the tricks of the professionals to create floor plans complete with style notes, color choices and even furniture.

The software eliminates paint chips with its library of brand name paints and tints. Browse through the library, select your ideal color and ‘paint’ the walls of your three dimensional room. No more picking a paint color based on a 1 inch square chip. The software also includes a full library of three dimensional furniture pieces, allowing you to design spaces that fit your existing pieces or help you determine what size and shape furniture you should be looking to purchase.

For those looking to redo their bathrooms or kitchen, the software even has an extensive library of cabinets, appliances and floor selections. This allows you to complete ‘see’ your new room without spending a dime on the expensive appliances and cabinets. It is easy to create the perfect room and even easier to stick to a budget when you are utilizing a well developed floor plan and style guide.

Professional designers are talented. They will often offer you a computerized presentation of your ‘new’ home or d├ęcor. With budgets as tight as they are, why spend the money on a professional designer when you have the ability to do it all yourself. Take a quick tour through the library of colors, furnishings, doors and windows and design the room of your dreams.

Chief Architect Architectural Home Designer 9.0

Being one of the newest software around, it is definitely more advanced. It provides leverage for designers, builders and architect in coming up with designs and other projects such as decking, home remodeling, landscaping, outdoor living and designing.

It will be safe to assume that like its earlier counterpart, this software has user friendly options as well except that it has more additional features and exciting applications.

Features and System requirements

It can operate on Windows Vista, Windows 7 and XP operating systems. This powerhouse software makes building and designing fun and easy. Like the earlier versions, this can arrange walls, view landscapes in a different angles, choose from a variety of colors, has an automatic roof generation, make decks, doors, windows and cabinets and so much more.

From the 1,500 plant options from other version, this takes pride in its wide selection of 3,600 plants. Interior items in this great software has elevated to an amazing number of 7,000 that includes fixtures, windows, doors, cabinets, and appliances.

Highly recommended for professionals involved in the building and designing industry, this software creates so many possibilities. It also has a cost estimator that calculates not only the cost of the project but the home’s value and amount of mortgage possible.

Easy to use program

This software comes with very easy step-by-step tutorial videos. It also has a very clear user manual. There is no need for a technical support to assist you in using the program, but then again you may seek assistance to have a better grasp of the program. It also has an intuitive interface function, user-friendly options that come with many other applications.

Want to view your future home in varying modes? The program allows you to do so. It could be in different landscape angles, home views and even night/day view modes.

This software lets you design with outstanding details, plus its huge selections located in its library is an added incentive. You can also import photos, display your finished designs for other home designers to see and name the brands you plan to use on your remodeling projects.

Purchasing the software

The price ranges anywhere from $180 to $220. Of course, this program is upgradeable which allows you to add more updates when available. This program may be purchased at any Chief Architect store or downloadable from various website for a fee.

What You Cannot Do

Unfortunately, this home planning software has certain limitations. With this software, you cannot verify if such conforms to local and national building codes, the program also does not allow you to add sounds. Complicated HVAC systems cannot be done on this software as well.

Other than these limitations, this software is a great buy. You can practically create various designs with ease. Just by using your computer coupled with patience and imagination, no doubt you will be able to achieve the goal of coming up with great design without the need of spending much on contractors and interior designers.

In general, this software justifies its advertising claims and representations. Enjoy designing, building and remodeling with Chief Architect Architectural Home Designer 9.0 today!