We are remodeling a Frank Lloyd Wright inspired home. Although we like the overall style of the home, the floor plan was not well designed for an active family. We are redesigning the entire first floor living space. The house doesn’t even have a front door! It needs help! I didn’t know where to begin or what the rooms would look like if we changed things around.
Lucky for me, I found Chief Architect 3D architectural software for residential and light commercial design. Millions of people already use Chief Architect home design software and now I know why.
Chief Architect has professional 3D design software for builders, remodelers, kitchen & bath designers, interior designers, architects, drafting & CAD, academic, and even for the DIY home enthusiast.
I was able to review the Home Designer by Chief Architect. This product was designed for the Do It Yourself people like my husband and I. It is based off of their Chief Architect professional line and actually works with that program if you are working with a professional on your building project. Home Designer gives you the tools for home design, remodeling, kitchens & baths, landscaping, decks, outdoor living, and cost estimating.
Hands On Review of Home Designer by Chief Architect
For only $59, the Home Designer software can be downloaded right to your computer or you can order a DVD. We downloaded the software, it was quick and easy. You can even download a FREE demo!
The Quick Startup Guide that gives great how-to tutorials to get started right away on designing your home. There was no downtime for learning this product for us and we had no experience in house design. The House Wizard gives easy layout options for rooms to get you jump started.You can choose various styles of furniture to place in each room to get a visual of what the space will look like. Then, you can walk through it! I loved being able to visually see what each room would look like, walking through from room to room with this software.
With the Home Designer Software, I was able to visually see what each layout would look like and how it would feel.
Our Floor Plan Variations
Once we measured the entire house inside and out, we began designing our new floor plan. My husband and I worked on it together and came up with the below floor plan. The entire back of the house is windows floor to ceiling. We wanted to preserve this as it was the feature that sold the house to us.
We moved the current kitchen from the new entry into the current living room! It moved the guest bath from the front center of the house to the current laundry room. It created a large great room.
So, we went through several floor plans until we came up with the one below.
Currently, we have a floor plan that we feel will work very well with our family. I know that I will like this layout because I already ‘walked through’ the house! You can see the rooms with different elevations with the advanced 3D camera tools. This new floor plan also moves the kitchen from the new entrance to the current living room. It keeps the guest bath right where it is which will save a lot of time and money running new plumbing since we are on a concrete slab. It also creates a new entrance from the garage right into the kitchen which will make bringing in groceries easier! We moved our home office from upstairs to downstairs with easy access from the front door for clients. Overall, I love the new plan and I know we could not have done it without Home Designer! It just feels like home.
Designing my dream kitchen
Next, with this software, we can actually design each room, including the kitchen. The kitchen design will be the largest project to design in the house. I can’t wait to design my dream kitchen! With this software, we can choose cabinet designs including styles and colors of cabinets. We can choose from the entire library to plug in fixtures, countertop, appliances, and more. This will make designing our kitchen fun and easy. I can’t wait. I hope to get this project started in the next couple months.
Landscaping with Home Designer
After our home remodeling project is complete, we will begin the landscaping outside. My favorite activity! The Home Designer software actually allows you to create gardens, pathways, patios, decks and landscapes to fit your yard and elevations. We are starting with a clean slate in the backyard. It is hilly and I’ve never worked on landscaping a hilly area. This product will come in handy as I learn out to terrace garden.
Features of Home Designer
Detailed information on Home Designer can be found on their website. Here are the key features of the product taken from their website:
- Home Design, Remodeling, Interiors, Kitchens & Baths
- Visualize your design ideas in 3D
- House Wizard – Quickly drag-and-drop your New Home Design
- Design in 3D and 2D Plan View – simultaneously
- Use the automated building tools to assist you in your design process. The tools have commonly accepted defaults for most building practices.
- Create Accurately Scaled Floor Plans
- Choose from over 4,000 built-in Library Items
Here are a few pictures to show how the program looks. You can see the amount of detail the program allows you to input to get a realistic visual of your finished project. Also notice the different elevation views.
21 thoughts on “Home Designer by Chief Architect 3D Floor Plan Software Review”
I agree, Angie. It’s amazing what the new software can do.
3D home design software is great to be sure you have things the way you want. I have an older program like this… a lot of great easy-to-use home design programs have come out in the past few years, I’ll have to upgrade eventually.
I can see how useful this software would be. We had our floors refinished, which required moving everything out of the house, then fitting it back in afterward. I did a sketch on paper and used sticky-notes cut to scale for major furniture to try different arrangements before moving back in, but this software would have mage that process easier and more flexible.
We also are remodeling a century old home that has a terrible floor plan. I can’t visualize like my husband so this could really help me. We would be able to see if an addition is needed or if there is a way to rework the existing space. Thanks for the review.
That program looks awesome!
Yes, it is really helpful to actually SEE what the room will look like before you do a home remodel – this was impossible before products like Chief Architect. They do a great job and the software is easy enough for non-professionals to use!
THANK YOU FOR SHARING THIS PRODUCT. I LOVE THE DETAIL AND THE DIFFERENT OPTIONS. I WILL DEFFINATELY KEEP THIS IN MIND AS WE MAKE SOME IMPROVEMENTS TO OUR HOME. I WAS EXPECETING GRIDS WITH BOXES FOR APPLIANCES AND FURNITURE. THIS IS AN AWESOME TOOL THAT SHOWS THE HOUSE IN “REAL LIFE”.
Congrats on your new house, I remember you telling me about moving. 🙂 The kitchen is always on the top of the list, it’s on mine too! There are so many options for layout, this program really helps you see what you can do. I love that you can even place countertops and hardware on the cabinets! We may be doing a giveaway with Chief Architect in the future, keep an eye out for that!
i like what this program can do… now that we have our home we are dreaming about how we want to change and alter it… the kitchen is top on my list!
This is so cool! It’s hard to picture what your house will look like when you’re looking at a flat blueprint.
Yes, you can easily learn this software. I’m sure you could do a zillion more things with experience and practice but I’m just excited to be able to get exactly what I want out of the product right out of the box!
That is really cool. It looks beautiful. It seems so easy to use, even though I am so not knowledgeable about construction, architecture or the like.
My husband had a program similar to this one. It is so awesome how you can make it look just like you want your home to look right down to the counter tops.
I have a home design program already and I hate it because it is so limited. The Chief Architect looks great!
Hi Pamela, Yes, it is a great project. My father-in-law is also a contractor which helps a LOT with projects that we have no idea on! He gets us started and we do what he says often times. 🙂 It is so nice to get a couple projects done and enjoy it but there is always more to do. I can’t wait to tackle the outside and gardening, however the inside is more important!
I have worked with various programs for landscaping. I am anxious to see how this works for your landscaping project. The 3D looking photos look remarkable.
Wow! That is some project you have ahead of you. This looks like a good program to design your house (or redesign)
I was lucky with my total house remodel, my mom draws and designs blueprints and my dad is a contractor-I just let them do what they thought was right-it turned out great!
The outside is still a work in progress, but you can only do so much!
Wow, that program looks awesome!!
Wow! This is amazing! I can’t wait to see what you guys come up with in the end! It sounds like a great program that I know i’d waste many hours on if I had one, just to ‘dream’ about future possibilities.
I have use the Chief Architect Program and would highly recommend it – modestly priced and reasonably feature a good choice for Home use.
This is really cool! But oh my goodness! Overwhelming too!!! Good luck! Can’t wait to see the finished product.