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Virtually Better – 3D Software

3D software takes planning from rendering to reality

Remodeled kitchen by Premier Remodeling and Construction.

3D rendering of proposed kitchen remodel by Katy Fernandez with My Cabinet Source.

Using 3D software gives design professionals a virtual way to show clients how their remodeling project will look. Paper and pencils are often used to make very rough sketches in the earliest phase of the design process, but after that, the plan is drawn to scale in 3D software, working first on a floor plan, then on details including roof lines, wall locations, surface finishes and cabinet layouts. During the design/plan phase, this 3D model is used to facilitate communication, making it possible to visualize and explore various possibilities for the project.

For a remodel, the existing house is often drawn first, and then the plan is modified to reflect the proposed changes. This helps the homeowner imagine the finished project before the work begins. Modeling in 3D gives the homeowner a better visual sense of the project than traditional blueprints do.

Homeowners can meet with the design professional in person or with an online meeting, where they view the plan, review 3D images of interior and exterior views from many angles, and check out the overall footprint. Mod­ifi­ca­tions often can be made on the spot. This interactive process speeds up the design process and makes the homeowner more in­volved in the project.

A mini layout – a smaller version of a blueprint – might be emailed to a client in as a PDF. The layout could include traditional floor plans and elevations, interior and exterior, but adds colorful 3D images similar to photographs of the proposed plan, showing views from various angles, as well as surface finishes of walls, floors, cabinets, etc. The owner then contacts the designer with their evaluation of the plan.

Regardless of the type of plan review, once changes are made and the plan is complete, the builder/remodeler now has an accurate model for preparing the estimate. When the job is approved, blueprints for permitting and construction purposes are created using the same software.

Using 3D modeling is a win-win. The contractor benefits from the accuracy of a 3D model — it is easier to estimate a job and keep costs in line when a project is finalized before the ground is broken. The client can clearly see how the project will look, which saves time and money by making it simpler for them to make decisions quickly. With 3D modeling, a picture is truly worth a thousand words.

Katy Fernandez, CAPS: Designer, My Cabinet Source

Contractor: Premier Remodeling and Construction


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