Designing your own home is a major undertaking which doesn’t have to cost you a lot of money for expensive design software. In fact there are quite a few capable free alternatives to expensive retail software. The first and most promising software is Google
SketchUp 3D. This software is available for free online download right at the Google web site. Sketchup uses a revolutionary 3d design paradigm. This program really excels at designing the look and feel of the property. While this software is not really well suited for drawing floor plans, you can easily play with different shapes to see what your house is actually going to look like. On top of that – this software is just plain fun to play with!
The next software that you can use – is available online only – is Home and Garden Television’s (HGTV) Room Planner. This software is available as an interactive online download right on the HGTV website. This software features the ability to create a customized floor plan for basically any type of layout that you want. In addition it makes it extremely easy to experiment with making changes in a room lay out to see what the overall effect of the changes would be.
With the two software options above you can design the outside 3d view of your home, and also lay out the designs for your rooms. While those two software packages are conceptual in nature – you really need a program which will pull those ideas you’ve developed and turn them into hard plans. That’s where Artifice Design Workshop Lite comes in. The software is available for free download from the artifice.com web site. This software can be used for landscape design, interior design, concept design, or even a project to lay out a whole neighborhood. One of the great things also about this software is that the web site has a large amount of tutorials, which can provide invaluable ideas and tips on how to best utilize this software.
Because all the software reviewed above is free, it is probably best to download and try them all to see which one works best for you.