How to Use 3D Models & CAD Drawings to Plan Your Home Renovation


Planning a home renovation is both an exciting task and a tedious undertaking. It seems tempting to work toward when you anticipate a vital improvement over the current state of conditions and envision how abundant a living space can be. At the same time, it involves meticulous attention to detail and making sure every penny you spend doesn’t go to waste.

Making mistakes can lead to significant delays while the project is underway, and at times, a complete halt. Some of these mistakes include imprecise measurements, purchasing incorrect fixtures, and underestimating your budget. As a result, remodeling requires additional time and extra money. Fortunately, all these difficulties are pretty easy to avoid thanks to 3D floor plan rendering services.

Before you jump to a conclusion and think of 3D modeling as an added expense, remember that there are affordable options. Alternatively, you can use web services or mobile apps created for casual users rather than purchasing complete 3D software or hiring a 3D artist.

Some apps are free to use. They may not be as sophisticated as professional 3D CAD software but are enough to allow homeowners to draft their remodeling plans in good quality. You can then work with your preferred contractor to develop a plan together.

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How 3D Models Might Help

Whether you aspire to remodel an entire home or a specific area like a kitchen or bathroom, 3D modeling offers an image of the final result before a renovation begins. Homeowners can discuss each step of their goals throughout the visualization process with their preferred contractor to determine the right way, the proper budget, and an exact deadline. Consider 3D architectural visualization as an exceptional practice of the “measure twice cut once” approach used in construction. Listed below are a few ways 3D CAD software can help the remodeling process a great deal:


Effective Communication

You can visualize all design elements in a beautiful photorealistic layout on a computer (or smartphone.) Homeowners, contractors, and designers can collectively negotiate and discuss based on the same model. A 3D design is an excellent platform for trying several ideas or suggesting improvements over any previously drawn input. You can visualize the smallest object, like figuring out the best spot to put a TV on the wall, to a more complex puzzle such as the compliance with local building codes.

Unfinished drawings are usually saved in cloud storage, allowing anyone involved in the design process to access the file and make further modifications if needed. Once the graphic is complete, the homeowner can approve the design and the construction process can begin. 

Design Vision Clarification

The hyper-realistic nature of 3D models delivers a comprehensive yet straightforward interpretation of your approach and choice, which elaborates a design vision without requiring you to say too many words. Having a digital design tool can help you see the area in different colors, textures, and shapes that will build the overall atmosphere. Each change you decide to make is instantly available on-screen, so everyone involved may see your idea from the same perspective.

Without a centralized visualization platform, it can be challenging to explain how a design element can complement the rest of it. For example, you might have difficulty describing how careful placement of a rug can create a sense that a room is more spacious than it is. Luckily, 3D modelers can convey the message more clearly.

Material Options

Let’s say you purchased a plain glass window but now prefer to do stained glass. This will require you to make another purchase and may cause a delay in construction (assuming the primary window had gotten installed). You have the option to either remodel the work or become stuck with something you might not like.

Regardless of the 3D modeling app you use, chances are the app features a function where you can modify materials. You can try out numerous elements as allowed to see which one is best for the room. When stainless steel doesn’t look right, try wood instead; if genuine leather upholstery is too expensive, a synthetic type could be what you need. If the laminate floor is too much of a hassle, then vinyl would be right up your alley. You can try all of these materials and many more customizations in your digital 3D model without spending a dime.

Accurate Space Planning

In the past, homeowners who remodeled their homes initially relied on a myriad of pages of two-dimensional plans; at times, a pile of those pages was only for a room. The pages were essentially drawings of the same model, seen from various perspectives. The mistake of inaccurate measurements was not uncommon due to the difficulties in keeping track of all the details drawn on the sheets.

With advanced 3D rendering, you can merge all the pages into one digital file. Having precise measurements can be consolidated to create a more coherent plan. 3D modeling eliminates the possibility of inaccurate measurement, even when two or more teams handle the renovation project. The collection of designs are based entirely on a single digital drawing. Any design elements included, such as furniture and fixtures, can display detailed dimensions, making any inconsistency highly unlikely.

Avoid Common Renovation Mistakes

The most prominent advantage of using 3D models for any home renovation project is to detect potential issues before construction begins. You don’t want to be in the midst of a project when you notice something is off with the spatial dimensions or whether the LED lights you’ve bought are incompatible with the existing fixtures. What seems to be a minor mistake can truly become expensive work.

Home renovation is a significant investment, and you want to make sure everything is done accurately from the get-go. Going through the trial-and-error process should happen at the design phase since making changes are quick and accessible rather than in actual job sites where a small mistake can cost you hundreds if not thousands of dollars. With the help of 3D modeling, you can plan and verify each part of the renovation early in the process.

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Guide to Using 3D Models for Home Renovation

Let us clarify that no matter how advanced the 3D modeling apps are, a professionally drawn home design is often better. As sophisticated as the software and the computer may be, you will not fully discover the knowledge, value, and skills a 3D architectural rendering designer offers. The main point of creating a homemade 3D model on free apps is to experiment with multiple design ideas most efficiently and affordably. Here are a few ways to use them properly:


Take Proper Measurements

First, make sure you gather the correct dimensions of the job site you plan to renovate, whether it is a room, an entire house, or any particular area in your home. You can do so with physical or digital mechanisms too. One physical tool that can help measure the space is a traditional retractable tape measure along with a pen and a notebook. A more advanced version is to use a measuring app available on smartphones.

Ultimately, you will need the room’s dimensions from the walls’ height, length, and depth. Other elements to include are doors, windows, and fixtures. You will also need to collect the dimensions of all furniture pieces to place inside once the renovation is complete. If you’re going to buy new furniture, look for the product specification online. Make sure you record all the measurements first.

Use a Familiar Software

If this is your first time using a home-design software, you may need to research more information through blogs, forums, and social media to understand its use. Well-known CAD software such as SketchUp Free and Sweet Home 3D is available at no cost, but you may have to spend several hours to grasp their basic functionality.

The best alternatives are web-based 3D modeling apps, which usually offer an intuitive drag-and-drop interface and are more suitable for beginners. They also contain a library of 3D assets, colors, textures, and materials to explore design ideas easily. Some web-based apps also work on smartphones, for example, Planner 5D, of which the basic functionality is good enough without making in-app purchases. 

Start Designing 

The workspace on the screen varies depending on which software you use. Most apps display the work area to play around with as a grid of squares. There will be several boxes on the screen where you can input your room measurements. Refer to the list of measures you’ve written down in the notebook.

Sometimes, drawing your space from scratch can be daunting. Use the available sample files and floor plan templates built-in in the apps for assistance. Some templates include furniture pieces and decorations, which you can always resize and modify to suit your project. 

Drag and Drop

You may not always find the exact shape of furniture, decoration, and fixtures you want, but you can also match the measurements, at least. More stylish furniture with elaborate details may require additional purchase. Resize everything to your measurements, drag and drop the models into different spots within the work area. If the apps allow, add some more details such as wallpaper, curtains, flooring, and other furnishings. 

Save and Share

Some apps have a split-screen interface that allows you to switch from 2D to 3D view. To ensure all the measurements are accurate, you may have to go back and forth between the two. You can spin, rotate, and zoom in/out of the entire workspace to get a solid idea of how it would look in real life. Once you are happy with it, save the 3D model and share it with your contractor or designer. Discuss the model with professionals and ask them to improve the plan or whether the project is plausible with your budget. 

Professional home builders and designers have long used 3D models to plan for renovation and new construction. They probably prefer more sophisticated 3D CAD software with rendering capabilities to do their jobs, which you can learn more about Cad Crowd. Still, it does not mean homeowners cannot take advantage of the same technology, albeit in a scaled-down version, from web-based or smartphone apps. 

Cad Crowd’s 3D Architectural Visualization Services Are Here to Help.

At Cad Crowd, we have the privilege of working with top freelancers to get you started on your next renovation project. Our team of professionals specializes in CAD services across the globe with top-of-the-line software to bring you a photo-realistic design of any space. Let us help you plan your next renovation project or learn more about it here. If you’d like assistance with your next plan, contact us for a free quote.