If you’re looking to change up the look in your home, mobile apps are a great way to save yourself time and money. Some allow you to find design inspiration, while others model your home so you can try out new ideas before you implement them. Here are a few of the most impressive design apps available for iPhone and Android devices.
1. Houzz Interior Design Ideas
Houzz is an encyclopedic source of home design ideas and inspiration. If you’re trying to find furniture pieces or accessories to match a theme or color, Houzz is a great place to look. You can also participate in the Houzz community forums to get help from other users, and collect things you like in a design scrapbook that you can share with spouses, contractors, and anyone else who needs to know. The app’s design is simple, but attractive and complete.
2. iHandy Carpenter
This is a great tool for DIY home improvements, wall placement, etc. The app features beautifully-rendered virtual tools, including a plumb line, a bubble level, a protractor, and a ruler, so you can position furniture and wall-hangings at clean angles. The app uses your smartphone’s internal accelerometer to get results just as accurate as the real thing. The interface is smooth and responsive, and the tools themselves look great.
The Pinterest mobile app is another excellent way to get crowd-sourced inspiration for your home design. For the uninitiated, Pinterest is a social network for art and design, allowing you to “pin” your favorite things into an online scrapbook. While it lacks the design-specific features of the Houzz app, Pinterest’s much broader audience makes it a deeper well to draw from when you’re out of ideas. Also, since your spouse and friends are more likely to use Pinterest, it provides an easier medium to share ideas.
4. Home 3D
Home 3D allows you to create a 3D model of your home to try out new paint, flooring, furniture arrangements, etc., without all the mess and effort of a “trial run”. If you’ve ever stood in the aisle at the hardware store agonizing over paint samples, or wondered how that new coffeetable will affect the flow of your living room, Home 3D can save you a lot of time and headache. Note: while you can get pretty accurate colors, the app’s graphical limitations will require you to still do some guessing about lighting and other factors.
5. Mark On Call for iPhone
This is another home modeling app that isn’t quite as pretty as Home 3D, but provides more sophisticated design tools and an increased level of customization. It’s not as handy for getting the exact look of a new idea, due to its simpler graphics, but it’s a better pick for determining the fit of a new piece of furniture or the cost of a renovation. The interface is complex enough to take some getting used to, but if you make frequent changes in your design, it’s worth getting over the learning curve.
Guest article written by: Tara Wagner is a staff writer for [tp lang=”en” only=”y”]TechBreach[/tp][tp not_in=”en”]TechBreach[/tp]. She has worked from home for over a decade, and loves sharing news and advice with fellow telecommuting moms and dads. She’s fascinated by new tech and new ideas; and when she finds time to unplug, she enjoys long hikes in the mountains near her home. She lives in Denver.