Designer Floorplan Software
September 22, 2005 6:22 PM   Subscribe

I am looking for a 3-D floor-plan software for interior designers that can be used to show clients how furniture, rugs, art, lighting, etc. will look in their home spaces. Anyone have any recommendations? Extra points for something simple to use for a computer "novice."
posted by Pressed Rat to Home & Garden (8 answers total)
Sketchup (review on Kevin Kelly's Cool Tools)
posted by Nothing at 6:38 PM on September 22, 2005

Sketchup looks pretty cool. That may be exactly what I need for my house planning. I'm not the questioner, but thanks anyway.
posted by Kickstart70 at 7:06 PM on September 22, 2005

I've tried Broderbund 3D Home Architect Home Design Deluxe. It's a little old-school compared to Sketchup, but is quite easy to use, and focusses much more closely on the kind of home design requirements you seem to have.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 7:26 PM on September 22, 2005

SketchUp. SketchUp. Sketchup.

You will not find a better application.

@Last is working on coming up with a version for home use, and a price to match. However, given that you've mentioned "clients," I think it's fair to say you should pay the professional-level price.
posted by five fresh fish at 7:56 PM on September 22, 2005

Response by poster: Thanks for the ideas - Sketchup looks pretty interesting, but at $500 it's way beyond the price range my wife's looking for. She does interior decorating for homeowners on a word-of-mouth basis & is looking for something that will allow her to map out an existing floorplan & then "populate" it with sample furniture/decor, rearrange, etc. in order to help her client visualize how things might look. She's got a new client that this would be useful for, but it's the first time she's felt the need for it. She's relatively new to computing - hence the easier the software is to learn & use the better.
posted by Pressed Rat at 8:37 PM on September 22, 2005

I don't think you'll find 3d software that is easier to use then Sketchup. In fact the learning curve becomes a hockey stick once you start looking at other apps. Put on a good show with it and your wife will get plenty of good word of mouth. You have to spend money to make money, sometimes.
posted by Scoo at 9:41 PM on September 22, 2005

Room Planner - ePreVue - a free program that is pretty comprehensive, and easy to use.

I got to this from Rowe Furniture. They also have a kinda cool function that allows you to visualize fabric on furniture - Studio Rowe. I bought a sofa from Rowe ten years ago, and got to see what my choice of upholstery would look like right in the store.
posted by Corky at 6:35 AM on September 23, 2005

PR, if your wife wants to present herself as a professional, she needs to pony up for the professional software. If she is even moderately successful in presenting herself as professional, she will easily recoup the cost of the software.

She should purchase SketchUp if she is serious about making this hobby into a business.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:39 AM on September 23, 2005

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