Virtual room designing

Written by jazmin espinal
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Changing the paint colour every month, constantly buying test samples of kitchen backsplashes and trying to design your perfect room can turn into a long, gruelling process. Give yourself a break and work smart instead of hard. There's no need to schlep your kids to the home improvement store every weekend so you can search for the perfect details for your room. Design your perfect room from the comfort of your own home by using a virtual room designing tool.

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Types

Many types of virtual room designing programs are available online and as software packages. Popular online virtual designing tools are Armstrong Flooring's Design a Room, Arrange a Room from Better Homes & Gardens, This Old House's Digital Designer and BBC's Virtual Room Designer. HGTV.com offers software packages including Home Design and Remodeling and Home and Landscape Platinum Suite. Other widely available virtual designing software programs are Chief Architect's Interior Designer 9.0, House Beautiful's Home Design Suite and Better Homes & Gardens' Architectural Home Designer.

Benefits

Virtual room designing is an efficient way to decorate a room. Programs allow you to preview your room's finished look with just a few clicks of a mouse. Some virtual room designing programs are tailored for specific projects, such as changing out your bathroom tile or just painting your bedroom. Even if you aren't designing a specific room, this is a fun way to pass the time that simultaneously allows you to define your decorating style.

Cost

The cost of virtual home designing depends on whether you're using an online-based virtual room designing tool or are purchasing a software program. Generally, online tools are free as a courtesy to the website's readers. However, software programs can range anywhere from £26 to £52, as of 2009. If you're looking for free software that is instantly downloadable to your home computer, consider downloading a freeware virtual designing program from a reputable website.

Features

Virtual room designing software and tools are constantly being updated with new technology. Popular designing programs that were once only available in 2D are now available in 3D. Many programs are undergoing such vast improvements that they mimic the quality of the designing programs used by professional interior designers on television. Many software programs come equipped with hundreds, if not thousands, of paint colour choices and dozens of cabinet, flooring and customisable furniture options.

Considerations

If you're just getting your feet wet with interior design, you may want to try out several free online programs before investing close to £65 on software. Often, you'll find design satisfaction through free design tools online and will completely eliminate the need for a full service software program. If you do find that you'd like to invest in a program, you will be further along on your learning curve because you will have gained experience with virtual design programs through the free online tools.

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