Here are some ways you can make money drawing house plans as a draughtsman. I”m assuming you have very good CAD or equivalent skills (Sketchup, Autodesk, etc.).
This is the easiest and fastest way to make money by drawing house plans. There are all kinds of folks and businesses that need help with drawing plans. Consider the following:
Architects: architects hire draughtsmen to help them with the time-consuming digital drawing aspects of their job. Look for job postings.
Interior designers: Some interior designers do it themselves and others hire people to do their drawings for them. There are plenty of jobs here but note you might not be drawing entire house plans. You might be doing a single room. It’s pretty much the same thing.
House plan retailers: If you can create plans good enough to sell to consumers, you can apply to various house plan websites.
Realtors: Some realtors like to provide 2D and 3D drawings of the homes they sell. I suppose if a home is expensive enough it’s worth doing if it helps the sale. The point is if you notice realtors include layout drawings of houses they list, you could offer your services to them. This isn’t quite the same as creating your own layout and plans from scratch; instead, you’re drawing an existing home which might not be as fulfilling as creating your own.
Note – you can also opt to get regular job drawing plans for any of the above employers; freelancing is not the only option.
Where can you get freelancing gigs?
2. Create plans and sell them
You definitely need to look into the regulations regarding whether you require some professional certification, degree, or ticket in order to draw and sell plans where you live. Some municipalities and cities specify this as well. This means that just because you can draw some killer home plans doesn’t mean you can sell them.
However, you could work with someone with the requisite degree or ticket and have them review your work for a fee or percentage of your sales.
Another consideration is local building codes. You’ll need to consider this. That said, many folks who do buy house plans often get them vetted locally or by some person who is familiar with their local building code.
Where can you sell your plans?
There are several large, popular house plan retailers online such as Architectural Designs, HomePlans.com and several others. You can submit your plans and if approved by the website, you’re in business. The sites take a percentage of the sale. This frees you up from marketing and promoting so you can focus on what you love and do best which is draw house plans.
If you build up a reputation like Donald A. Gardner, you can create your own website and sell them yourself. This way you keep all the money. Don Gardner’s plans are wildly popular.
3. Start a blog / YouTube channel
I can tell you firsthand that there’s a large audience out there that like house plans. Interestingly, most aren’t actually in the market to buy the plans; they just like looking at them. I totally get it because even though I’ve looked at and studied thousands of house plans and layouts, I still enjoy it. Start a blog showcasing your custom house plans. If you get website traffic, you can make money with ads. If you become qualified to sell the plans, you can do that.