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3D architectural modeling involves creating a physical representation of a structure or architectural design. The models can be made from a wide range of materials, including paper, blocks, and wood. In architecture, 3D models can be a crucial element in the planning approval stage, design stage, or fundraising stage. With a custom 3D architectural model, all the stakeholders can quickly see and understand the scale and proportion of the proposed project. 

At Cad Crowd, we offer a wide range of freelance architectural 3D modeling services to support your architectural projects in all its stages, including the design, planning, and visualization stages. 3D architectural models can be created for all types and sizes of projects, be it commercial or residential. 

A highly detailed architectural 3D model can help you save a lot of time and effort during construction. We have the skills and experience working in different model mediums, from chipboard models to foam models. We use the latest 3D architectural illustration techniques to come up with amazing 3D architectural models. 

Our 3D modeling of any building has the highest geometrical symmetry and image details. In addition, we intelligently design our propositions, so the clients get the most affordable and high-quality 3D drafting services.

We offer our 3D modeling services to:

  • Architects
  • Engineering consultants
  • Building service contractors
  • Interior designers
  • Property dealers
  • Digital multimedia firms

Creative, handmade, and 3D printed architectural model solutions

Our 3D artists have the expertise to understand your design and come up with innovative solutions for your architectural project. We always tailor your architectural model to represent your idea. We work with our clients to help them visualize their architectural models. 

Handmade architectural models are quite useful in some types of real estate projects. They can showcase a unique sense of proportion, perspective, and scale that printed models cannot provide. Our 3D artists can create an accurate physical representation of your project that brings the design concept to life. They have the knowledge and skills to develop functional, imaginative 3D models for any design preference. 

3D printing is an excellent alternative for creating architectural models. Our 3D printing services have the capability to craft highly accurate 3D printing designs in just a few hours. This method is more flexible, so it’s easier to make modifications according to the client’s feedback. We have a good relationship with several 3D printing firms, and we're happy to refer you to the best for your specific needs. 

Types of 3D architectural models

Exterior models

Exterior models are designs of buildings that include civic spaces and landscaping around the building. Our 3D models will help you quickly understand all the exterior aspects, such as the materials and textures. Want to know what your backyard would look like with a swimming pool in it? Using these tools, you can quickly find out.

Interior models

These are models that show the interior space planning, furniture, colors, finishes, and beautification. Interior models, views of what you'd see from inside a building, are crucial for home designers and those looking to sell houses, since the ability to visualize a finished home is the key to selling it quickly.

Landscaping models

These are landscape designs that represent features like bridges and walkways. When planning large-scale plans like cities and towns, having an idea of what the landscape will look like is a great benefit. This also includes greenery design, like bushes, trees, flowers, and grass.

Urban models

These models are built to represent several city blocks, towns, villages, campuses, military bases, industrial parks, and so on. They are an essential tool for planning and development. They can include as much or as little detail as you desire. For example, an experienced modeler can depict a bare-bones city or an urban landscape complete with details ranging from people to garbage cans.

Benefits of 3D architectural models

Gone are the days when construction design was just about pen and paper. For a long time, architects used traditional two-dimensional drawings to design buildings. Unfortunately, these drawings often had many miscalculations, which would only be discovered once the construction had already begun. However, thanks to advances in digital technology, we no longer rely on pen and paper. 

Today, architecture and engineering firms are using 3D building models and digital renderings. This new technology has opened up new opportunities in architectural modeling and improved the quality of buildings. It has changed the presentation of architectural designs and brought imagination closer to reality. 

Below are some of the many benefits of 3D architectural models. 

Project visualization

The most significant advantage of the 3D architectural model is that it helps clients and stakeholders visualize a project. Research shows that most humans are visual beings who understand spatial concepts much better by viewing them rather than just imagining them. 

Therefore, all stakeholders involved in the construction process will benefit from the 3D visualization and will understand the scope of the project better, making the actual construction much easier. 3D models are very realistic—there won’t be many surprises during construction since everyone will be working toward the same goal. 

In addition, architects and engineers can manipulate the models and plug different options into the 3D scale to examine various scenarios and pick the one that suits the objective best. They can change the design in case some flaws show up, and small tweaks can be made quickly. 


A well-designed 3D model of the proposed building enhances the marketing strategy as the developers can present a clearer image of the project to potential buyers. Buyers, therefore, will get a better idea of what they will be buying and will be eager to invest. 

In fact, the experience of viewing a 3D model is more compelling to a prospective buyer than going through a 2D drawing. Many people acknowledge that the vivid image lingers in their mind for a more extended period. Therefore, you stand a better chance of winning the potential buyer with a 3D model than a 2D drawing. 

Enhancing precision and control

With 3D models, you get the most accurate representation of the project. Architects and engineers use the data collected by the 3D modeling software to create realistic models. For instance, a 3D laser scanning tool collects data that enables you to create a model of the actual space. 

The software gives you total control over precision, so no time is wasted measuring and re-measuring a 2D drawing. This high level of accuracy prevents expensive mistakes from occurring as architects and engineers can notice any errors before commencing the construction. 

Improving speed

Competition in the architecture and construction industries is high, so you would like to come up with the proposed designs fast. 3D modeling software interprets data much faster and enables you to create architectural models in less time, thereby saving you time and effort. 

Unlike the traditional 2D drawings that took a lot of time measuring, drawing, and making corrections, 3D models are easier to design, and contractors save significant time in the construction process. 

The architect also saves precious time and money that can be directed to other aspects of the project. In addition, 3D models are entirely accurate and leave little room for error. This means that designers don’t waste time correcting errors or miscalculations. 

Project approval and permits

Getting the necessary permits is a critical part of the construction process as it prevents any future legal hurdles. A 3D architectural model can help you acquire these permits by making it easier for the regulators responsible for approving and issuing the permits to assess the building and its potential impact on the surrounding environment. It will allow them to get a better visual of the proposed building, thereby expediting the process of obtaining permits. 

Fewer instructions

It’s easier to interpret a 3D architectural model than a 2D drawing. Therefore, with a well-designed model, clients get a better picture of the project, and those working on the project work seamlessly without confusion and errors. Unlike drawings that may require instructions on how to deduce design information, 3D models are almost self-explanatory. 

Lowering lead times

3D architectural modeling technology can reduce the lead time. Generally, designers take little time to come up with these models using 3D modeling software. With this advanced software, the designers can create incredible designs in a short time and present them to potential clients. 


3D models clearly show the physical dimensions of the buildings and their distance in relation to other objects in the layout. Therefore, the client can see and adjust the arrangements of objects to achieve various objectives, such as space and room sizes. 

3D models are very beneficial. However, to enjoy the maximum benefits, you must rely on companies that offer professional 3D architectural modeling services. We are a reputable company specializing in these services, and we have the skills and expertise to create fantastic 3D models for your projects. Since technology is advancing, we always stay up to date with the latest software to deliver high-quality models. 

Tips for creating high-quality 3D architectural models

The role of 3D architectural models in the construction industry is irreplaceable. These models are not only a presentation tool but also a creative product for everyone. Whether you’re a professional architect designing an urban model or an architecture student doing a design project at school, there are some basic things you need to observe in order to produce a well-designed, informative architectural model. Below are a few tips. 

1. Planning your model

The first step when creating an architectural model is to understand the model you intend to build. You must have a clear goal for the model regarding what you need to portray. For instance, for a house, you need a model that shows the design and the inside layout. 

For an urban design model, the level of details needed for architectural elements is less. Therefore, you must model the representation to match the intended form and function of the finished object as closely as possible. 

2. Scale

Once you’ve decided how your model is going to look, the next step is to select the most appropriate scale. It’s essential to understand scales in order to be able to work out practical options for your project. The scale is usually determined by two things; how much detail you want to illustrate and how big an area you want to model. 

Architectural models generally range between 1:10 and 1:200, while urban models range from 1:500 to 1:2500, depending on what the model will cover. For a big area, you need a smaller scale to avoid the model becoming too big. If you intend to show just the building itself, 1:100 or 1:200 would be fine. However, if you want to show specific elements of a building, you need a bigger scale like 1:20. 

International Scale Model Content
1:10 Interior spaces/furniture
1:20 Interior spaces/furniture
1:50 Interior spaces/detailed floor plans/different floor levels
1:100 Building plans/layouts
1:500 Building layouts/site plans
1:1000 Urban scale for site or location plans
1:1250 Site plans
1:2500 Site plans/city maps

 3. Use the right software

The ability to create architectural designs with 3D modeling software is a huge advantage for any graphic designer. It enables you to create more realistic illustrations that are compelling and satisfying to clients. However, to come up with such designs, you need to use the right software. 

Each architectural design software is targeted at different needs. Therefore, you should choose the best software for you depending on various factors such as compatibility with other programs, costs, and the available time. 

Best CAD software for architecture 


Revit is a powerful software for Building Information Modeling (BIM) developed by Autodesk. All its features are made explicitly for the architecture sector to handle complex projects. It can help you create high-quality architectural designs. 

One of the main benefits of this modeling software is its collaborative aspect, whereby multiple architects or builders can access shared models, often simultaneously. With Revit, designers are able to work quickly and with confidence as they work with objects, not a vector between points. 

AutoCAD Civil 3D

This software is designed to work with other Autodesk products like Revit, and it addresses more than just the two functions needed from CAD by builders and architects. The software has the ability to integrate survey images with terrain modeling, service schematics, roads, and constructional geometry. These elements are placed into one highly annotated package that allows engineers to focus on their specific area and see how their changes might affect others.  


ArchiCAD is CAD software for architecture developed by Graphisoft. It’s the ultimate software for architects, allowing you to do 2D and 3D drafting and visualization. With ArchiCAD design services, you can handle all aspects of engineering and design work. It also offers high-quality and photorealistic rendering, making it highly respected in the field of visualization. 

Another significant aspect about this CAD software is its large storage capacity which can store large amounts of information in your 3D models. It's also useful in designing buildings, interiors, and urban areas. 

AutoCAD Architecture

AutoCAD has for a long time been a staple of construction architects and engineers, to the extent that Autodesk developed a specific version for building-design work known as AutoCAD Architecture. This software is excellent for architectural projects as it enables you to do 2D and 3D designs. 

It offers excellent rendering and is suitable for 3D modeling and visualization. To speed up the designing process, the software provides pre-built objects for doors, walls, and windows as well as mechanisms for creating sections and elevations. 

The software helps you create realistic models with its combination of solid, mesh, and surface modeling tools. This CAD software is also good for 2D drafting and drawing and allows you to communicate easily with other people working on the project. 

Chief Architect

Chief Architect is easy-to-use software that even a person with limited 3D modeling skills can utilize. Homeowners looking to remodel their homes and architects who want to create unique residences can use this software. The software offers smart building tools, and its interface is quite intuitive. 

It can create the 3D structure and automatically generate the building system of your project. The software also allows you to export 360-degree-panorama renderings that you can share with your clients. 


SketchUp is free CAD software that is very easy to use. It can be used for 3D modeling and architecture. A great drawing tool, this software will enable you to produce creative architectural designs. With SketchUp, you can create flyovers and walkthroughs, which can be helpful for your architectural illustrations. 

This software is also great for scaled and accurate 2D drawings. It might not be ideal for designing an entire building, but it’s an excellent tool for prototyping a design at the conception stages. 

3D Studio Max

Developed by Autodesk, 3DS Max is quite similar to AutoCAD. Though it’s commonly used in the gaming industry, this software is also a useful tool for architects, especially for pre-visualization. The software existed before Windows 3.x and was one of the first tools to provide hardware-accelerated rendering of 3D images. 

One of its benefits is its ability to create visuals and flythrough animations to market a project instead of designing it from the floor up. 


CATIA is used in different sectors, including automotive, architecture, aerospace, and technology due to its ability to create complex and highly accurate models. While many CAD systems added collaboration and security-controlled distribution later, CATIA always had this from the beginning. Recently, with the introduction of Cloud functionality, it also expanded the coordination features. 

Technical terms definitions

3D rendering – It’s the process of creating photorealistic or non-photorealistic images with the aid of software. The rendering process depicts a 3D scene as a picture taken from a specified location but with the simulation of realistic lighting, atmosphere, shadows, texture, color, and optical effects.  

3D flythrough – A video created using 3D software to show what you would see if the product had been designed and you were flying through or around it. 

3D walkthrough – It’s a technology that allows users to view the interiors of buildings and plans of construction. It enables you to get a vivid interpretation of the construction and all the details through a virtual walkthrough. 

CAD – Computer-aided design. It’s the use of computer systems to help in the creation, modification, and analysis of a design. 

3D visualization – It’s the process of creating images using 3D software to communicate a message. It involves representing objects with an exact representation of the lighting, the materials, and the colors, based on a 2D design of the objects. 

Architectural visualization – The art of creating 2D and 3D images showing attributes of a proposed architectural design. 

3D architectural models FAQs

How much does a model cost?

Every model is a unique project, and the cost always differs. The massive complex models obviously cost more than small, simple architectural models. The only way to give you a realistic estimate is by looking at your requirements. Hourly design rates range from $50 to $120 depending on various factors. 

What information do you require to build a model?

The better the information you provide, the easier the process, and the better the model we will create. For architectural models, we need an accurate site plan showing the boundaries of the model, plans, sections, elevations, landscaping plan, aerial or ground level photos of the site, and references for colors, materials, and finishes. However, we will give you all the information once we get the details of the model. 

How long does a model take to create?

Each model is different, resulting in different turn-around times. Some simple models can take a few hours while complex models can take a few days or weeks. However, using our sophisticated 3D modeling technology, we create models in a fast and cost-effective manner. 

What is the best scale for the model?

Deciding on the scale to use for your model is one of the first and most essential steps in creating an architectural design. The scale depends mostly on how much detail you want to include and how big an area you need to model. However, you should also consider other factors such as the budget. Cad Crowd will advise you on the most suitable scale for your project. 

Can I make changes?

Yes, design alterations can be incorporated into your model. Flexibility is one of the advantages of using 3D architectural models. 

What about confidentiality?

Cad Crowd ensures complete confidentiality regarding your intellectual property. We're happy to sign a non-disclosure agreement before commencing the job for your protection. If you're interested in moving forward with your 3D architectural design project, get a quote today, and we'll help you out!

Freelance 3D architectural modeling design for any project

We have an in-house quality control team of experts who assign projects to the most qualified freelancers and review the designs for quality and accuracy. You can hire pre-qualified professional designers and 3D modelers with proven expertise and knowledge or launch a design contest and review submissions from several freelancers. 

No matter how complex your 3D architectural modeling design project is, we’ve got the necessary skills and expertise to handle it. Get a quote today, and deliver your ideas to your targeted audience fast and in a cost-effective manner with our world-class 3D architectural modeling services.


Brands we've worked with

Yale University School of Medicine
Tiffany & Co.
CNOOC Limited
The Boston Consulting

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