Live Interior 3D design software a useful tool

Whenever I start a new project, it’s tempting to jump in and start building, but the reality is that I need a plan.  When I started thinking about redoing the basement,  I stumbled upon a handy piece of software called Live Interior 3D.

Live Interior 3D plan
The plan for my basement refinish.

Live Interior 3D allows you to create floor plans and then model them in 3D, so you can “walk” through the space and see how it feels. You can also export the 2D and 3D plans to print or show in various formats.

The first thing I did was to measure all of the exterior walls and input the measurements into the software. It took me a few times to get all of the measurements exact, but once I did, I had a scale drawing of the basement footprint. Next, I added the things I knew weren’t going to move, like windows and the furnace, water heater, toilet and shower drains and then started experiment with the interior wall placement.

I’m not sure how many iterations I went through, but it was extremely helpful to be able to do a virtual walk-through of the space in 3D. I can experiment with different size doors and even start to visualize furniture placement.

I’ve finally got a nice plan to work from as I start to layout the walls. It’s really nice to be able to double-check measurements.

In addition to designing the space, I’m using the software to create the plans that I’ll submit to the building department for my permit. I’ve added placements for all of the outlets, switches and lights.

I was also able to add text labels to the document per my city’s building department instructions.

Live Interior 3D is only available for OS X, and the standard version, which I used, costs about $30. It’s fairly easy to use, definitely beats a hand drawing and has been incredibly useful so far.

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