It’s really hard to visualize how the furniture and fixtures you’re considering would fit your home. Whether you are planning your home interior design or renovating your tired and worn-out interior, you should know that there are so many easy ways to see how your plans can look like before going for it. You don’t have to be an architect or an interior designer to do this – you can make your own home design plans for free by using user-friendly applications. This means no need to buy computer programs and to enroll in AutoCAD classes.
These are some of the free, online home design software that would allow you to plan, draw, design and view your created space.
1. Sweet Home 3D
Sweet Home 3D calls itself “an easy interior design application,” wherein you can create a decoration and furnishing plan in just three easy steps. It will allow you to work in 2D space while showing a realistic 3D version of how it looks. It is an open-source software, so it is completely free for use by amateurs and professionals alike. You can use it online or you can download it to make use of the more advanced version.
By using Sweet Home 3D, you can draw walls and add rooms over an existing home plan, or you can import your own home plan and then scale it and trace over your plan. You can add rooms and change colors and textures of the walls, ceilings and floors. You can easily drag and drop furniture, and create doors and windows. You can choose from their large catalog of 3D models of pre-created furniture, objects and fixtures, and you may also download those that are created by other users. Its bonus feature is that it lets you navigate into the plan you made as a virtual visitor view point and see how your interior looks like on a given orientation and time.
An online interior design platform, HomeByMe allows users to draw home plans in 2D and 3D format. It’s one of those free programs with robust features and a variety of tools. You can draw a brand-new floor plan, or import an image of your own plan to sketch on top of it. Drawing a plan is relatively easy, and you can specify the exact measurements of a wall. You can customize a lot of home features, even things like radiators, AC units and power sockets. You can include text and annotations to your sketch for labelling. Once you’re done planning, you can convert your work as a 3D graphic.
Even if you don’t register, you can still create a plan in HomeByMe (although it’s better if you do). To save projects, you need to sign in through email or Facebook, Also, the designs you made are only saved online.
FloorPlanner is an easy-to-use online room design application that has got so many options that you might need from a design platform. It is web-based and no need for installation – just work right through your browser. In FloorPlanner, it is easy to set room dimensions and shapes with its user-friendly tools and it makes designing look very natural with its drag-and-drop support. Tons of options are available for flooring, furniture and other items. The free demo version can allow you to create one project and view your creation on the mobile app, but if you would upgrade to the pro, you can create more and work up to three floors per project.
The platform is great for creating a big picture of a floor plan, but for some the tools may be too detailed if you are only doing a quick project for one room. As mentioned earlier, FloorPlanner has a mobile app, and it is compatible for iOS and Android. However, since this is a web-based program requiring Flash, you can’t edit it on your smartphone – it’s for proper viewing on a handy device.
SketchUp fairly claims it is the “easiest way to draw in 3D.” It is a 3D modeling program getting popular because of its easy-to-learn interface but it can provide the same design powers as the traditional commercial software used by professional decorators, architects and renovators. Because of the software’s complexity, you need to download for free it to be able to use it. If you want the more advanced version, you may get Sketchup Pro for a fee.
This software is not specially made for home design, so you would not see pre-created walls, doors, windows and furniture. In Sketchup, you could make everything from scratch. Don’t be overwhelmed though, the interface is really easy to use. However, if you’re a perfectionist type of designer who is particular with the details of fabrics, paints and patterns, this one would not live up to your expectations. SketchUp is great for creating an accurate 3D view of your project, but not for too detailed or specific designs.
5. Planner 5D
Planner 5D is another great 2D and 3D home design tool great for planning floor plans, interior designs, landscaping and even pool designs. It’s an online editor which allows you to use a variety of layouts and adjustments, and to choose from hundreds and thousands of furniture and décor selections. It also has a drag and drop support, as well as a large gallery for inspirations.
This is primarily an online tool that can also be downloaded as an app for iOS, Android and OS X. It’s absolutely free, but premium features come with a cost. Even without any prior design skills, Planner 5D promises to provide you detailed home plans and modern designs like it was made by a pro. This platform is dedicated to provide stunning 3D graphics that can satisfy anyone who would try it.
6. Autodesk Homestyler
Autodesk Homestyler is a user friendly program created by the makers of AutoCAD, 3ds Studio Max and REVIT, which are all known for its professional design capabilities. This is a more user friendly program – in fact, one of the easiest online design apps out there today. It offers both 2D and 3D editing modes, and requires Google Chrome browser for the downloading process.
With Autodesk Homestyler, you can create interior design ideas using more than 10,000 catalog items and furnishings. You can design, decorate furnish or landscape rooms and areas. You can also navigate around your virtual design idea 360°. If you need more features, you can purchase the Homestyler PRO version.
7. Roomstyler 3D Home Planner
Roomstyler, formerly known as My Deco 3D Planner, is another web-based software with a relatively easy-to-use interface. You can upload your own floor plan or try their pre-existing floor plans. You can move the view around to see the plan in different angles. You can choose from their extensive selection of walls, doors and window styles; as well as furniture and accessories you can actually buy online.
Besides creating designs, the fun part about Roomstyler is that it lets users to create their own Moodboard, a compilation of items that you like for interior designing. You can browse others’ Moodboards for inspiration. This platform also allows members to display their finished work for other members to like and comment to, and provides contest opportunities to have members come up with fresh ideas according to specific themes. Signing up is also like joining a designer’s community for free!
8. IKEA Room Planning Tools
Most probably, every time you flip through an IKEA catalog, you get to see some items you would like for your home and daydream about how it would look like in your space. The IKEA Room Planning Tools are available to help you try planning your rooms using IKEA stuff, for free.
The IKEA design software is split into multiple versions such as the kitchen, wardrobe, office, storage and children’s storage planner. Drag and drop your chosen furniture pieces into the floor plan and view it in 3D. After saving, calculate the cost, print it out with all the measurements and take it to your nearest IKEA store so that you can buy your choices. Basically, this software is for trying out and shopping IKEA products while making sure that they would be suitable for your home.