Cheap Home Designer Software – Better Homes and Gardens Home Designer Suite 8.0

One of the best cheap home designer software around is a program produced by the professional 3D architectural software company Chief Architect. Their latest version of the program is Better Homes and Garden Home Designer Suite 8.0 and it has received its fare share of reviews on both software magazines, as well as in architecture websites. It has definitely become a mainstay in the home design software industry and at just around $100, one should be able to get his own hands on this impressive piece of software.

At a Glance

One of the primary reasons why this program has become so popular is because of the fact that it was designed and developed by such a successful designer software company. Chief Architect have released dozens of programs in the past that encompass other aspects of the industry, and their services even extend to training and customer support. This time around, with the new Better Homes and Gardens Home Designer Suite 8.0, they have come up with yet another effective program that will serve as an excellent tool towards a beautifully designed home.

Aside from a comprehensive user manual, the kit will also include more than 30 video tutorials that should be helpful for most types of users.

The Pros

Purchasing this program will bring forth a lot of benefits for users of all skill levels. Even first-timers shouldn’t have too much trouble using this software simply because it is very user friendly and quite straightforward. Although it does involve a myriad of different features, it is still very easy to use and navigate through. Besides, included in the kit are a variety of tutorials that will cover a multitude of subjects regarding the software. Also on board is a large database that holds a lot of accomplished home plans that can be used as samples or as a point of reference. An added bonus is the landscaping software which makes this an even more impressive cheap home designer software.

The Cons

As with any home designer program, the Better Homes and Gardens Designer Suite 8.0 still has its share of cons, albeit seemingly workable once the bigger picture is taken into consideration. For one, custom designing stairs and roofs might pose as quite a challenge, especially for those who lack the experience in using these types of programs. An even bigger problem is that the designs and blueprints produced by this program are not at the professional level. However, the price tag it comes with is definitely able to make up for any minor shortcomings it may have.

Home And Garden Decor

Your home is the only environment that you feel the closest to and besides; it is the only environment that your have full control over and that you spend most of your quality time at. Needless to say we all find ways of personalizing our homes in terms of design and the look and feel aspects but fact is that limitations in doing this come in forms of lack of resources or lack of creativity and innovation. In this piece we focus on home and garden decor. We will present to you some of the top notch home design ideas and concepts that can administer an overhaul in your home and make you love your home even more.

In aspects of Garden design there is much you can do to give your home exterior that look and feel and that will give the serene environment that you dream of. One of most ways of giving your home exterior or home garden that idyll look and feel is placing around Japanese lanterns. The Japanese lanterns come in different designs and art concepts and it is entirely up to you to pick on the ones that strike you. The Japanese lanterns will add a spark to your home garden. The lanterns also come in various art concepts and designs and as much as they are carved on different material. At the end of the day it will be your pocket and your personal choice that governess what you settle for.

Koi ponds are some of the most popular features when it comes to home and garden decor. What you need to know about a Koi is that it sea drum shaped Japanese fish that will adds life and color to your pond with its dazzling colors and playful character. Maintaining a koi pond can be a truly fulfilling hobby and watching the movements of this elegant fish can be indeed stress relieving. If you are also interested in implementing some landscape architecture in your home environment you can actually do this for your self or get a professional to do this for you. Landscape architecture is all about the design of the outdoor and public space to achieve environmental socio-behavioral as well as aesthetic outcomes. Al these ideas and home design concepts can be integrated to give your home that excellent look and feel.

Greening Your Home and Garden

The TV show “The World’s Greenest Homes” recently started me thinking about how can everyone make a contribution to reducing the carbon footprint.

The TV series mainly showed major renovations or new homes in which the owners made significant attempts to “go green”. Most folks are not in the position – they already have a home, and most likely a hefty mortgage that may preclude incorporating the changes and ideas promoted by the TV show.

However, the need for greening your home and garden is an imperative for all – and so the impact of even simple, small steps can have a real impact.

Just imagine if all homes in the USA converted their light bulbs from incandescent to compact fluorescent ones – not only are they energy-smart, using about 70% less energy, they last up to ten times longer.

Such a small step could have huge impact because of the sheer volume! And, then there is the ripple effect – less energy used – less fossil fuels consumed – less carbon emissions from power stations – and, BINGO! – cleaner air.

And, the cost is not really greater than the usual light bulb replacement – so your pocketbook is saved.

Now imagine if everyone also made a serious attempt at recycling – green materials to the compost heap, keeping electronics out of the trash bin, glass and plastics into recycle bins….. yes, it is a bit of a pain…. but it is not a total change of lifestyle that’s required, but more an understanding of what, you the homeowner, can do to help….. and, IT IS NOT NEGLIGIBLE.

It was suggested that if everyone in say the UK just changed 5 household products from their usual brands to eco-friendly ones the difference would be huge.

Other steps like low flow shower heads, dual flush loos, repairing leaky faucets, installing more ceiling fans, using a water filter to purify tap water instead of buying bottled water….. none of these will run your budget into the red or be beyond the average household capacity.

If you are ever in a position to undertake a major home renovation or build a new house – do watch that TV show – yes, there is a lot of info on the internet, but the TV series will show things in context and also many different applications and ideas that can be adapted. Just Google to find the TV show.

For that matter, you can even get ideas from it for smaller budgets.

The good news is that whatever you do choose it will make a contribution to a cleaner planet and, especially in regard to energy efficiency choices you will significantly reduce your utility bills and the consumption of fossil fuels.

The Eco Friendly Home should not just be a dream or an ideal. It ought to be a goal for all householders – even if only on a small scale.

See part two of this article called “The Eco Friendly Garden”

Make Your Home and Garden Your Own

There are lots of articles and even “how to” videos around regarding home and garden design tips. A recurring theme is to tie the patio décor with the colors and textures of the inside of the house. Of course, you will not put a second expensive living room couch outdoors… perhaps get a rattan piece in a similar color and design for the patio. Theme lanterns that project a pattern can reflect interior décor. You get the idea.

But, what do you do with a yard that is not necessarily flat or does not fit the traditional shape and size dimensions that are in the magazines???

Give it some character. Of course, tie it to the home interior with colors, woods, and materials as much as is practical. However, creating a terrace -or a series of them- can take a nightmare yard and turn it into something exclusively yours.

Elevating and leveling areas with various materials such as wood decking, concrete, or paver stones will give your patio area a character all its own. A series of steps up to a seating area with comfortable patio furniture surrounding a fire pit is one idea. Embedding lighting on the path and steps will keep everyone safe.

A structurally sound terrace can hold an outdoor spa and a privacy wall with weather protection can hold a big screen TV and outdoor stereo system. If your spa area is already above the level of the patio or entry you can add a level in between to dry off and ease the trek back to the patio.

Your outdoor cooking area can be on its own level with your barbeque, preparation tables, and built in refrigerator grouped together for cooking ease.

Garden fountains are another way to give your outdoor environs some character. There is something calming and serene about flowing water. These are available in lots of sizes and configurations and can be installed easily. Fountains have been common garden pieces for centuries and will add a level or 2 to basic patio or garden décor.

Garden statues and sculptures are another way to set your outdoor environment apart from the others. These can be historical replicas, religious, or any style that fits with your overall plan. Outdoor lighting can add dramatic effect to both fountains and outdoor sculptures and keep folks from walking into them in the dark.

Not all of us stay in our homes forever like many of our parents did. With current economic factors a move for a job change or educational opportunity is always a possibility. Or over time the home outgrows you as the kids grow up and move away. Keeping your patio and garden area design consistent with the overall home aura will help increase its value. Too eclectic a design can take it the other way. If your prospective buyer does not share your taste, the cost of your former pride and joy removal will be included in their offer. So, make it your own-but stay with the style and feel of the rest of your property.

So, make your space your own. Have it mirror your taste and attitudes. Use ideas like terraces and lawn pieces to make your yard and patio an area that is cozy, comfortable, and the best place for family and friends to gather for summertime fun.