GARDENS & DECKS
|Choosing Deck Design Software|
Choosing Deck Design Software by Nicky Ferns
There are a few deck design software suites that can help you decide on the type of deck that you would like to have in your yard. The types of deck building software that are available and used by consumers aren't meant to produce engineering schematics or anything so comprehensive as this, but can really help one get an idea of how particular deck designs would look in one's backyard.
In my opinion, you shouldn't spend more than about $50 on deck design software. And there are several deck design software packages that cost less than that. Since this type of software is not high precision stuff, there's no reason to spend hundreds of dollars on it.
Better Homes and Gardens makes a deck designing software package called 'Better Homes and Gardens Landscaping and Deck Designer'. This deck design software is included in their 'Home Designer Suite 6" package, but you can save quite a bit of money if you only need the exterior design aspects of such software.
You should look at deck design software as a simple way to get a general idea of how the addition of a deck and other outdoor accessories will compliment your house and yard. For the most part, all of the deck design software that is available, just like the interior decorating software out there, is neither foolproof nor exact.
Most deck design and interior decorating software have problems with aligning things exactly. And many times users are disappointed with the selection of plants and other built- in accessories to add to the design of your yard or deck area.
The Better Homes and Gardens deck designing software and other comparable software suites can help you decide on some major issues such as deck size and shape, as well as how other aspects of your yard will combine with the deck you're thinking of installing. But if you're looking for high precision deck building software, you're talking about CAD programs that cost hundreds or thousands of dollars.
There are cheaper deck building software packages, such as 'Total 3D Home Deluxe" which retails for about $35. Though there are reviews that seem to indicate that there are some greater problems with alignment and selection of accessories, I hardly think this matters when all the deck designing software out there has some of these problems.
When choosing deck designing software, go ahead and get the cheaper software. Keep in mind that you probably won't be able to upload pictures of your own accessories or exact wood grain, but these features are generally wrought with bugs in the software that has these types of features.
As long as you know that deck design software is to be used merely as a visualization tool, you'll probably appreciate the added perspective that such software is able to provide.
About the Author
Nicky is a do-it-yourself landscape enthusiast who has written numerous articles for various landscaping books on helping individuals plan their home design projects. He has created http://www.loneoak.net which consolidates all of his knowledge into colorful illustrations with free installation tips for various pergola designs.