Category Archives: Home design

How to Budget Your New Home Designs

You want a new home design but you have no idea if you can afford it or not. There are lots of options to choose from, yet you want the home design that suits your taste and of course your wallet. If you want to have some ideas, you need to check out some home design and house builder sites that provide amazing listing of new home designs and styles to get the house design of your dreams.

The first thing you need to do is estimate your house, meet up with the home builders who make houses that are similar in size, quality, and features to the home you want. Home builders will tell you how much per square foot they frequently charge for home structure. They can also give you an approximate idea of what your dream home might cost. Ask them if they have already some price lists, this will both lessen the waste of time.

Expect some features to cost more like new furniture, new paints, new landscape and etc. The most costly areas in building a home are regularly the bathrooms and the kitchen. The number of windows and the size and quality of windows can also change the charge. Vaulted ceilings and high roof pitches can increase the cost of a home design. When you want to use other homes to calculate an estimate, be sure the home has the same style and features of the home you plan to build.

According to About.com, “the cost per square foot is often higher for a small home than that of a larger home. When building a larger home, the cost of expensive items (such as a furnace or kitchen) is spread over more square footage. Consequently, a larger home may have a lower square footage cost than a smaller home. Also, it usually costs less to build a two-story home when compared to a one-story home that has the same square footage. This is because a two-story home will have a smaller roof and foundation. Plumbing and ventilation are more compact in two-story homes.”

Check all the sizes of your house, from the living area, dining, kitchen and bathroom. Have your home size rounded up or down to increments of two feet. This reduces wasted materials. Also, the shape of your home is important, better yet take a picture all the different sides of your house. In this way, house builders will have a draft beforehand before the ocular.

User Friendly Software Home Design

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.

Chief Architect Home Designer Suite

This software is one of the easiest of all the home designer software around. It can be used with just about any project like landscaping, kitchen and bathroom remodeling, deck construction, interior design, remodeling. It also has a cost estimation option to find out how much such projects will cost.

Novice and professionals highly recommends this software for so many reasons.

Features

Chief Architect Home Designer Suite 9.0 has many features that will surely take your projects into different heights.

Terrains and other views can be automatically generated in an instant, thanks to 3D technology. It also features plant chooser options wherein you can design your landscape with 1,500 various plants. Tagged as simple, fun, easy and powerful home design software, you can design as you make a virtual walk-in into your projected designs! You may even mix various colors, choose dramatic lighting effects, and select from over thousands of items of furniture, cabinet and a whole lot more.

This software comes highly recommended. In a glimpse, you may visualize your walls with thousand new colors, your garden with amazing plants, and texture for your countertops and cabinets. You may even put label brands on your items.

It also boasts of powerful building mechanisms such as creating foundations, stairs, roof generation, framing and dormers. It also features unlimited styles for your cabinets and deck lay-outs.

Easy to Use

Just when you think easiness and advanced technology cannot be intertwined, this great software comes along.

Unlike other home design software programs, this one has garnered positive reviews for its user-friendly options, with lots of additional features. It also has intuitive interface that allows you to easily navigate objects. It also has very clear and easy to follow steps in using the program.

It is coupled with house wizard and other online tutorials that make lay-outing fun instead of torture! It is used for quick lay-out and provides information that is very much detailed. You may look at pre-designed homes to give you an idea of how it is supposed to be done.

You may add interior items like cabinets, chairs, and other appliances with much ease. Move walls to suit your design and even mix colors for your designing preferences.

Virtual Treat

The program comes in both 3D and 2D views which are generated automatically by clicking the camera tool. It also has a dollhouse and glasshouse view. In a dollhouse view, the roof is removed to provide an overview of what is inside your home. Translucent views are made possible by the glasshouse view.

There is also an elevation slider that allows you to see your landscape in different angles, and building terrain tools allows you to crate irregular or flat views. With realistic 3D views, you can even create shadows and visualize your house with night and day views.

Chief Architect Architectural Home Designer

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!

The Best of Green Home Designs

Green home designs use materials, furniture, and accessories that are environmentally friendly or reusable. This type of design uses long lasting materials as well as those that can be renewed. Green home designs focus on recycling material and making sure that material is non-toxic. Green home designs use very few items that are brand new. Green materials such as cork, bamboo and eucalyptus are primarily use today in home design because they are earth friendly. For example, the extraction of the cork does not destroy the tree. Being green means that you will salvage or restore items whenever possible.

There are so many options in today’s market for green flooring. These flooring materials can be sand down, painted, or refinished. All this can be done with using material that contains volatile organic compounds or VOC’s. The finishes and glue used for some floor installations can contain formaldehyde resins. It is important to use non-toxic materials with little to no VOC within the sealants, cleaners, finishes, adhesives, polishes, etc. As a result you will create a home that has less toxicity in the air and is healthier for the planet.

Nothing is guaranteed 100%, so even buying materials with little to no VOC doesn’t assure you that it is completely safe. This is because there are so many chemicals produced today. Regardless of that, if you want to remodel your home using green home design techniques, you need to select products that are environmentally healthy.

Every area of your home can benefit from green design. When constructing or renovating your home, be sure to install many windows, glass doors, skylights to allow the natural light to enter. These measures conserve energy and make the home bright and inviting. Concrete floors are very stylish, an come in many patterns, colors, and textures. This flooring is one of the greenest because you can install it without the uses of chemicals like glue or finishes. Concrete can also be used as kitchen counter tops, which have become very popular. They are natural in appearance and create a modern looking style. This material also works well in the bathroom and on the fireplace. Recycled glass is another option for green kitchens. This is a very versatile product that can come in different colors. Try recycled glass as a kitchen counter top, back splash, or even tiles. Recycled glass is a great alternative in green kitchen design. Green Building Supply provides recycled glass in various sizes. The prices range from $1,129.00 to $4,223.00 for 30″ x 54″ to 60″ x 108″ slabs, and each are 1 1/4″ thick. You choose from five different color palettes.

Appliances are major purchases for you home. You need to think about function, and style, but most importantly energy saving capability. Whirlpool sells a Whirlpool Black 21.7 Energy Star Certified Side by Side Refrigerator for $765.00; item #ED2KVEXVB. Energy efficient appliances are readily available in the market today. It is actually very easy to to find appliance that save energy and water usage, and there is something for every budget. Be sure to recycle your old appliance properly.

Top 5 Green Home Design Tips

A green home design combines environmental decisions and resource efficiency into each step of building and development of an entire home to lower environmental impact. For a home to be considered ‘green’ it must focus on energy and water efficiency in the design, building and operation of the home. A green home design has to take into account the kind of impact the home has on the environment.

1. Build a home that is just the right size.

There is not necessary for a home to be any larger than what a family needs. Smaller designs use fewer materials, are easier on the environment and less expensive. It also costs much less to heat and cool a smaller house.

2. Use solar energy for heating water and electricity.

Both photovoltaic panels and solar water heating panels can be used for these. This is renewable energy that is effective, saves money and is better for greenhouse gas emissions and pollution.

3. Design a roof that will collect rain water to be used around the home.

It is very easy to design a roof that gutters the runoff to a central location to be collected. This water can be used for irrigation, washing clothes and flushing toilets.

4. Consider the type of building materials used in the design of the home.

Find local sources for materials and choose materials that are natural and gone through less industrial processing. The more natural the material, the less toxic it will be.

5. Use sunlight to provide light into the home.

Money can be saved if skylights, windows and light tunnels are used to provide lig

Custom Home Design

It seems like more and more developments these days are filled with look-alike homes. From identical facades to cookie-cutter floor plans, these homes are designed to suit the average family… But your family isn’t average-you have particular needs, desires, and wants. So why settle for cookie cutter house plans when you can get a custom home design that suits your family’s specific needs!

From architectural tastes to family size to your specific lifestyle, your family is unique. So why cram your five-person family into a three bedroom house or settle for a tiny galley kitchen when you love to cook. Custom home plans are your answer for getting the beautiful, functional house that’s perfectly suited to your family. Your local home designers can integrate your personal needs into a standard house plan or create a one-of-a-kind home from scratch. They’ll work with you to identify the features, flow, and format you need in a home and then create the plans for a beautiful house that incorporates all of these things. When you’re going to the expense of building your own home, why settle for anything less than perfect. Get the home of your dreams with custom home design today.

Keep in mind that top-quality house plans can make a huge difference in the entire process of building your new home. Helping ensure the construction process stays on schedule and within budget, detailed, accurate blueprints and house design plans can help ensure you get the home of your dreams. On the other hand, incorrect or error-filled plans mean a chaotic, problem-filled build and a less-than-ideal house. That’s why it’s so important to ensure your house designers [http://par-homebuilders-nola.louisiana-biz.com/] are qualified, skilled experts. By choosing professional home designers, you can help guarantee you get the custom plans you need to take your visions of a new home from paper into reality.

Some home builders even offer design services, making building your dream home even easier and more hassle-free. Combining expertise in house plans as well as construction, these home builders are your one-stop shop for new home construction. Call your local contractor or new home builder today to get started on building the customized home of your dreams.

Finding Inputs For Your New Home Design

You might have the concept in mind. You might have even laid out the concept in the form of drawings. The drawing must materialize into a house. There lie the entire intricacies associated with new home designs. Although you have partial concepts materializing within the mind, the reality is far from it. If you want to see your ideas camouflaging itself into a house, you will have to seek the necessary advice from experts. Do not worry, we are here to help; please consider these tips and strategies the next time you visit the neighbor architect.

The design of your new home might occur to you as a spontaneous process. You will have to note down the various ideas as it crosses your mind. This is beneficial because you will be able to consult them at a later date. While talking with the chief architect, you will be able to relay your ideas comfortably; with the aid of these notes. We should proceed with a smaller pace because the niche is vast and mistakes are bound to occur. Here is an insider tip – the next time if you find that you are running out of ideas, please consult the internet.

This might sound really silly, but you can find some ingenious new home design ideas from the internet. Some of the renowned architects maintain websites and blogs. Please visit them regularly so that you will be able to harness some ideas that are prevalent in the niche. Combine those ideas with the ones already present in your mind and you will have that perfect new home design. Take your time, do not hasten the process because you have all the time in this world. This is going to be your dream project and dream projects will take their own sweet time to materialize in real life.

While visualizing the new home design, please consider the budget. Anyone can sit and dream all day long. Budget is an important consideration, and you will have to accumulate the necessary funds by all possible means. The cost of construction materials are rising, and you can expect it to rise in the coming months. Unless you have the necessary cash flow, you will have to wind up the project sooner than you had initially realized. If your spouse is working, please ask her to chip in. It is better not to opt for loans from financial institutions.

If you would like to spice it up, you can always seek innovative ideas like green architecture. The trend is fast catching up in our country too with many new home designs involving environmental architects and suitable architectural plans. By reducing the effective carbon footprint of your home, you are doing a great favor to mother earth. We can only wish for such thoughts to occur in the minds of many others who are looking for newer home designs. Did you know that with the aid of suitable computer simulation programs, you will be able to design your house virtually?

Selecting a Free Home Design

So you’ve decided to build the home of your dreams on your own. While there is no limit for your imagination, your budget is probably limited. One excellent way of cutting cost on your home project is by using one of the many free home designs available on the web. Many reputable websites offer simple home designs for free- all you have to do is sift through the plans to find a house that is right for you. Below are some things to consider before looking for a home design.

1. What do you need?

You need to have a clear idea of your needs. Some things to consider are:

  • Number of rooms (Factor guest room, home office and children)
  • Number of bathrooms
  • Additional rooms: basement, den, formal dinning room
  • Your activities: Do you enjoy cooking as a family? (You might consider a larger kitchen). Do you like to entertain? ( You might need a spacious living room)
  • Do you think your needs will change? (i.e. will you have more children, or take your elderly parent into your home?). If so, you might want to consider choosing a home design with room for an optional addition for future needs.

2. What is your budget?

Have a clear budget in mind prior to searching for plans. You do not want to fall in love with a plan that is way over your projected budget. It is best if you search for home designs with an estimated cost below your budget in case of emergency (for example, if construction takes longer then expected, and you need to pay rent for your current residence for an additional month or two).

3. What kind of lot do you have?

Keep your lot shape in mind as you search for plans. If your lot is narrow for example, you might consider searching for a taller home design. Additionally, make sure the plan you choose fits your lot- you do not want to choose a large plan for a small lot.

If your lot is sloped, you will need to find plans with elevated foundations to them- most such plans include a basement.

4. Are there zoning restrictions for your area?

Most residential zoning laws fall into one of four categories: Height restrictions, Style restrictions, House to land size ratio and distance from the house to the edge of the property. Contact your local authorities for specific zoning laws for your area.

Green Home Designs

Green home designs are actually what you would refer to as environmentally friendly homes because it makes use of eco-friendly and reusable materials. These homes lean towards renewable and longer lasting materials.

Green materials include those that are saved or restored in an existing structure. There are many available options today. Using materials that contain volatile organic compounds or VOC’s when painting, refinishing, or stenciling is avoided.

Green homes of today incorporate the use of bamboo, eucalyptus and cork because these are sustainable and renewable, with special mention to cork because the extraction of cork causes no damage to trees whatsoever when properly done. It is best to choose wood that have the authentication or certification of environmental groups.

When installing the home flooring, the use of non-toxic and low to no VOC sealants is recommended. Also consider non-toxic finishes, polishes, cleaners, refinishing and adhesive products. Keeping with the green home design allows for better indoor quality because the new home emits less toxins and becomes a more conducive and healthier place to live in. Although even after opting for non-toxic materials, there is still no guarantee for 100% good health and safety because other toxic chemicals are encountered on a daily basis. But the whole concept of building a green home is to ensure that no contribution is made to the further degradation of the planet and to provide a safer abode for the family at the end of the day.

Creating a green home keeps this in mind. It is also recommended that many glass windows and doors are included in the designs as well as to the roofs and walls to allow natural light enter the home. Skylights, aside from conserving energy consumption in the home is a good way to ensure that moisture does not accumulate in a room.

When designing the kitchen, try to incorporate the use of concrete counter tops. It will add a modern look to the area. Vetrrazzo is a type of recycled glass and is also a common green counter top choice. Recycled glass comes in various colors and gives a very attractive touch to the kitchen. Aside from counter tops, it can also be used as a backsplash. Another exquisite alternative would be recycled glass tiles.

When choosing appliances on the other hand, a few considerations to be made are the energy efficiency, functionality, style and of course, the budget. Go for the most energy efficient appliances when buying new ones. Recycling old appliances may also be done. Local recycling departments are sure to give sound advice on what can be done to recycle them.

Consumers should be wary about merely sending their old appliances to a landfill. A refrigerator for example has about 95% of its parts that are recyclable. Old kitchen appliances are not as energy efficient and will in effect cost a considerable amount of money over time. As much as possible, it is recommended that all old kitchen appliances be recycled.

In line with the green design is also to design green insulation or to use eco-friendly insulation materials. Green home designs make use of a lot of ceiling and wall insulation in the entire home. It is best to choose recycled denim or cotton insulation that is made from recycled blue jeans. Wool is also a good type to use and so is Icynene, a water blown spray in foam. New materials such as the aerogel, is made from silica to form frozen silica smoke or an ultra porous silica form that is about 99% air which makes it unbelievably light but incredibly strong and an effective insulator.