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design your own homeThere’s a designer in all of us. When it comes to designing for ourselves, it doesn’t get any more personal than designing your own home. Of course, you can hire a professional to do the job, but if you have a good eye and want to give your home your own touch, try your hand.

Autodesk Homestyler is a cool free online tool that lets you experiment with interior design on the browser. Using a home designing solution like Autodesk Homestyler also lets you visually decide on things like furniture placement and color combinations. You might finally plonk down money for some professional advice, but experimenting on Autodesk Homestyler helps you give some personal inputs to the designer along with the money.

So, let’s play around with the very promising online designing tool and see if it can bring our interior design plans to life. All you need is a browser. Autodesk Homestyler also has a Chrome app.

After you register and log-in, press the large green button to start designing. Autodesk Homestyler takes you through five stages to your perfect home.

design your own home

You can start from scratch or pick a design from the gallery. I am going to build it fresh from the ground up. What you get is this very sleek canvas for the house of your dreams:

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design your own home websites

Designing the basic structure is a simple case of drag & drop. You can easily change the dimensions to match your structural drawings. The little pop-up on the side lets you Split or Demolish the walls to change the shape of the rooms or create passage ways. Those little pop-ups are context sensitive and will give you selective options depending on the item you are using in your design.

design your own home websites

You can work with the gamut of these structural items when it comes to completing your designs. Clicking on the little Home icon on the catalog side-panel reveals the entire list.

design your own home websites

Here’s a snapshot of the choices for doors. There are categories like – entry doors, closet doors, interior doors, garage doors, and patio doors to sift through for the perfect requirement. Homestyler takes great pains to cover all generic items you might need to design your house.

design your own dream home

Below the generic items you will notice a catalog of related products (Brands & Collections) advertised by retailers. Homestyler brings a rich menu of well-known brands for your entire design needs. What’s really cool is that you can drag and drop their products on to your design. The products are proportionate to the actual measurements, so you get an idea of the area an item takes up. In fact, you can also start a shopping list with the branded items you are planning to put into your house.

design your own dream home

You can design a multi-level house one floor at a time. From the 2D floor plan, with a click on the 3D button, you get an idea of how exactly everything is coming together. You cannot add items in the 3D view but you can drag paint walls and move anything (doors, windows etc.) that are attached to the walls. Autodesk Homestyler gives you 200+ choices to play around with the wall color of your choice. I just brushed (actually dragged & dropped) the wall of my ‘house’ with Reddish Earthtone. The pan-zoom- rotate controls help you view the model from all angles.

design your own dream home

Oh, did I forget to mention that you can add trees, potted plants, as well as landscaping items to create your dream outdoors.

One of the really cool features of Autodesk Homestyler is it allows you to take snapshots with a very handy ‘online camera’.

Once you click your snap, it is sent for processing and you get an alert when it comes back from the ‘lab’. Here is mine:

That’s it! My first level house is ready. Frank Lloyd Wright would probably rollover in his grave, but this was my first attempt and a very casual one for the purpose of this article. A more professional job will look like this:

design your own home

Waxing Praise

If you are hankering for a free online tool to create mockups of your dream house, I think you will love this this program. It’s sleek, fast, and pretty much full-featured. In fact, if I can hazard a guess, it can hold its own against the best online home designing solutions out there. Plus, it’s all free. I haven’t mentioned a few more features like the export and sharing options which are pretty much standard stuff. The one thing you should check out is the lineup of video tutorials that take you through the tool.

Are you a wannabe home designer? Looking for ways to design your own home? Potter around with Autodesk Homestyler and give us a feedback. You can also check out some previous posts for design inspirations:

Create a House Floor Plan with FloorPlanner Create a House Floor Plan with FloorPlanner Create a House Floor Plan with FloorPlanner Read More
3 Floor Design Services to Decorate and Plan your House 3 Floor Design Services to Decorate and Plan Your House 3 Floor Design Services to Decorate and Plan Your House Read More
The 6 Best Blogs For Architectural & Interior Design Ideas The 6 Best Blogs For Architectural & Interior Design Ideas The 6 Best Blogs For Architectural & Interior Design Ideas Read More

  1. Trident1000Y
    August 25, 2011 at 11:37 pm

    Sketchup has a much, much steeper learning curve.

    • Saikat Basu
      August 26, 2011 at 4:28 am

      I gave up on Sketchup because of lack of time. It took me quite a while to get the hang of the way you change the perspective and angles. Before I found Autodesk, I had tried out FloorPlanner. It's also good, not nearly as this, but comes with demo plans. 

  2. James Bruce
    August 24, 2011 at 8:07 am

    This genuinely looks incredible, but I'd be interested in it for landscape design rather than interior. One of the screenshots landscaping options, so I'll go check it out now. Thanks!

    • Saikat Basu
      August 24, 2011 at 10:46 am

      Yes, it looks as good as any commercial product you can find. I have tried out a couple of others before this which were trials or limited. This beats them hollow.

    • Saikat Basu
      August 26, 2011 at 4:25 am

      Let us know your feedback too after using it James.

    • James Bruce
      August 30, 2011 at 9:36 am

      Tried it for a bit, but noticed the landscaping options are extremely limited. It's basically just one big advert for sponsored partners it seems - at least in the gardening bits I looked at. I would rather it provided certain generic items, but some categories of items were blank (??? why were they even a category) and some only sponsored. Like fences. What if i dont want that particular style of fence/gate that X company sells? Isnt there a plain old boring wooden fence option? Apparently not. 

      So yeh, bit limited in the gardening front. Didnt try the interior though, imagine thats better. 

    • Saikat Basu
      September 1, 2011 at 5:03 pm

      The interior options are better, though you have to use the sponsored options...at least they are more varied.

    • Reuven G. Yativ
      January 18, 2015 at 9:48 am

      Hello Saikat, just found the software on android shop and tried to put it to use. One annoying thing : where can I find fawcets and other things for bathrooms/kitchens?

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