5 Top Shed Design Software Options (Free and Paid – 2018)

Sure, you can buy a shed, but because it's not a complex structure, if you have some building experience, why not design your own shed and build it yourself?  Check out these 5 shed design software options - includes both free and paid options.
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Custom designed wood shed designed with shed software

Sure, you can buy a shed, but because it’s not a complex structure, if you have some building experience, why not design your own shed and build it yourself?  This way you get exactly what you want and will probably save some money.

The starting point is to start sketching out some ideas and then put together a solid shed blueprint plan together.  While you can do this with pen and paper, you might get better results using a shed design software program.

Below we set out 5 shed design software options that offer shed-specific options.  Some offer free access and features; others are paid software (i.e. you need to pay for them).

FYI, if this is your first introduction to the concept of design software for the home, there are options for pretty much every aspect of a home and garden.

1. Home Designer Suite

Home Designer Suite is a middle-of-the-line of the many software products by Chief Architect. It updates with a new version each year and can be downloaded from the website.

As a 3D home design software for DIY home enthusiasts, it tries to replicate the processes and considerations taken by professionals when it comes to home planning. When done right, the result can be comparable to a professional work. Although it should be great news for the novice and simple DIYers with no CAD backgrounds, this also comes with its own downsides.

Getting to grips with the tools, buttons and controls take time. Don’t expect to master the program overnight and certainly not in an hour.

Once you’re already starting your shed project, the program won’t allow you to just go on a roll and create right away. To start with a new plan, you’ll first have to deal with the House Builder Wizard which would ask you numerous questions about important details such as style of the house, minimum square footage, framing defaults, exterior siding, etc. This software certainly demands patience to be a virtue.

The difference with Home Designer Suite from other design softwares is it doesn’t start with a drawing or a sketch but with a wall that’s built one at a time.

So to create a garden shed, go to the Build drop down menu, Wall and Straight Exterior Wall. There’s a detailed instruction to go about it posted on its website.

Features

  • 2D and 3D designs with automatic 3D rendering
  • Automated tools
  • Built-in style templates and 6,000+ library items
  • Extensive landscaping tools
  • Cost estimator
  • Virtual 3D tour
  • 3D viewer app
  • Rotate symbols in 3D
  • Home Designer Suite 2019 costs USD $99 with a 30-day refund warranty
  • Compatible with MAC and PC
  • Save designs to the Cloud

Pros

  • Sophisticated features
  • Professional-quality CAD tools

Cons

  • Amount of tools can be overwhelming
  • Entails a learning curve
  • Limited to only one computer at a time

Screenshots/Video:

DimensionsRoofDoorBasic ShedRailingWork AreaShed with Work AreaShape CatalogTwo Invisible RailingsFinal ResultVideo

Home Designer Suite Dimensions

Home Designer Suite Roof

Home Designer Suite Basic Shed

Home Designer Suite Railing

Home Designer Suite Work Area

Home Designer Suite Shed with Work Area


Home Designer Suite Shape Catalog

Home Designer Suite Two Invisible Railings

Home Designer Suite Final Result

Home Designer Suite Video

Click here for Home Designer Suite

2. Shed Boss App

Shed Boss App is a design tool created by Shed Boss as an outlet for clients and home DIYers to easily design their dream shed right at their fingertips. It’s a simple app with straightforward and dead simple tools and features.

To start with, just click on the button that indicates you want to start creating a shed. It will then take you to the app’s basic user interface. The tools and features are found on the left side of the screen. The app will not allow you to skip on a process so you will have to build the shed by order of the features as you see them.

It will first ask you to choose from a few selection of building types, then enter the dimensions and pitch dimensions. To zoom in or out, use the scroll wheel on the mouse or pinch the screen if you’re using your mobile or tablet.

To build the shed, it’s really just a matter of selecting from the app’s available features. Basic tools, basic shed.

Features

  • Customisable 3D view of your project
  • Extensive design features including windows, doors, rooflines, insulation, mezzanine floors, and skylights
  • Detailed input for technical details to make your building safe, sound, and up to standard
  • Photo Mode lets you get a picture of what your new shed will look like in the exact location you want it using Augmented Reality
  • Share on Facebook or Twitter
  • Available on the Apple Store and on Google Play

Pros

  • Very easy to use
  • Informative tips about the ideal location for a shed

Cons

  • Can’t design or customize
  • Limited features
  • Dimension feature doesn’t recognize decimal points so it can’t set precise measurements

Screenshots:

StartBuilding TypeDimensionsPitch DimensionsExternal WallsTab titleGaraportsFeaturesColoursExtrasLocation InfoWind RegionShieldingTerrainFinalise

ShedBoss App Start


ShedBoss App Building Type

ShedBoss App Dimensions

Pitch Dimensions

ShedBoss App External Walls


ShedBoss App Internal Walls

ShedBoss App Garaports

ShedBoss App Features

ShedBoss App Colours

ShedBoss App Extras


ShedBoss App Location Info

ShedBoss App Wind Region

ShedBoss App Shielding

ShedBoss App Terrain

ShedBoss App Finalise

Click here for Shed Boss App

3. Fair Dinkum Sheds Designer

Fair Dinkum Sheds Designer app is created by Fair Dinkum Sheds, an Australian-based distributor of steel buildings. The app allows users to design their own shed, barn, garage or carport. If they choose to, users can also request a quote for their designs.

The features are found on the left side of the screen. Users may skip to other features right away but the first step is to choose the building type to work on. Unlike other apps, it gives users more leeway when it come to adjusting dimensions and has a good number of colors and cladding choices. But as with most shed design apps, all you need to do is click on the option available to see if you like the result.

There’s no option to zoom in or out. To see from a different angle, simply hold and drag the cursor around.

Features

  • 3D project
  • Extensive design features
  • Set precise dimensions
  • Share result to Facebook, Twitter or via email
  • Available on the Apple Store and on Google Play

Pros

  • Easy to use

Cons

  • Limited tools and features
  • Can’t zoom in or out

Screenshots/Video:

StyleLean-TosWallsWindows, Doors & SkylightsColours & CladdingOptionsQuoteSave & ShareVideo

Fair Dinkum Sheds Designer Shed Style

Fair Dinkum Sheds Designer Lean-Tos

Fair Dinkum Sheds Designer Walls

Fair Dinkum Sheds Designer Windows, Doors & Skylights

Fair Dinkum Sheds Designer Colours & Cladding

Fair Dinkum Sheds Designer Options

Fair Dinkum Sheds Designer Quote

Fair Dinkum Sheds Designer Save & Share

Fair Dinkum Sheds Designer Video

Click here for Fair Dinkum Sheds Designer

4. SketchUp

SketchUp is a 3D modelling software used for various drawing applications such as interior design, architecture, civil and mechanical engineering, film, and video game design. It allows you to build almost anything from scratch and be as meticulous as possible. The free software is called SketchUp Make and can be downloaded from the website. The paid version is called SketchuUp Pro and is used by many professional architects.

Unlike many design softwares, users in SketchUp start with working in 3D. Another difference with SketchUp is it allows you to build everything and anything from scratch. This means there’s plenty of room for you to get wild and creative as you customize and add details. On the other hand, this can also mean that working with SketchUp can be complex.

Its user interface maybe daunting at first but it’s actually pretty simple. The most commonly used tool is the pencil tool and push and pull tools. So the technique is mostly draw then push and pull. That’s how most of the 3D models are created. This makes it easy to learn even for those with no CAD backgrounds. Within an hour, you’ll find yourself creating shapes and house models.

With SketchUp, you start off by drawing an arbitrary rectangle. You push and pull, input the desired dimensions and create a floorboard.

To backtrack a little, working with SketchUp can be complex but that’s because it allows you to create a 3D replica of the real thing. It’s no wonder professional architects use this software. It’s up to you if you want to slouch off and create a shed with just shells on the outside or create a replica with representations of a plywood, studs, roof shingles, etc.

Features

  • 2D models
  • 3D models
  • It’s 3D Warehouse library of free 3D models is the world’s biggest
  • Lighting effects
  • Textures
  • Layer manager
  • Add model view, drawing scales, line weights, dimensions, callouts, and graphics
  • Animation
  • Precise dimensions
  • Export to PDFs, images and CAD files
  • Autosave and manually save in Sketchup format
  • Import JPEGs, CAD plans, PDFs and other file types
  • Works under Windows and MAC OS
  • Available in 10 languages

Pros

  • Has a free version
  • Smart and intuitive software
  • You can build and create anything with it
  • Lets you add complex details
  • Vast library of free 3D models as well as aesthetic design options
  • Plenty of video tutorials
  • Tablet version for androids and iphones

Cons

  • The free version doesn’t allow import of files
  • Only the paid version allows export of files
  • Shareable only within the 3D Warehouse
  • Tendency to stop responding when the file becomes too heavy

Screenshots/Video:

Step 1: Drawing a RectangleStep 2: FloorboardsFloorboardsStep 3: Wall FramingStep 4: Wall FramingStep 5: Wall FramingStep 6: Wall FramingWallsStep 7: WindowsStep 8: WindowsStep 9: WindowsStep 10: DoorStep 11: DoorDoorStep 13: TableStep 14: TableStep 15: Flower PotsStep 16: Flower PotsStep 17: Flower PotsStep 18: Rafter FramingStep 19: Rafter FramingStep 20: Rafter FramingStep 21: Rafter FramingStep 22: Rafter FramingStep 23: Rafter FramingStep 24: Rafter FramingStep 25: Rafter FramingStep 26: Rafter FramingStep 27: Rafter FramingStep 28: Rafter FramingStep 29: SoffitRoofStep 30: Door detailDoorhandleFinal ResultVideo TutorialDemo Video

SketchUp Step 1: Drawing a Rectangle

SketchUp Step 2: Floorboards

SketchUp Floorboards

SketchUp Step 3: Wall Framing

SketchUp Step 4: Wall Framing

SketchUp Step 5: Wall Framing

SketchUp Step 6: Wall Framing

SketchUp Walls

SketchUp Step 7: Windows

SketchUp Step 8: Windows

SketchUp Step 9: Windows

SketchUp Step 10: Door

SketchUp Step 11: Door

SketchUp Door

SketchUp Step 13: Table

SketchUp Step 14: Table

SketchUp Step 15: Flower Pots

SketchUp Step 16: Flower Pots

SketchUp Step 17: Flower Pots

SketchUp Step 18: Rafter Framing

SketchUp Step 19: Rafter Framing

SketchUp Step 20: Rafter Framing

SketchUp Step 21: Rafter Framing

SketchUp Step 22: Rafter Framing

SketchUp Step 23: Rafter Framing

SketchUp Step 24: Rafter Framing

SketchUp Step 25: Rafter Framing

SketchUp Step 26: Rafter Framing

SketchUp Step 27: Rafter Framing

SketchUp Step 28: Rafter Framing

SketchUp Soffit

SketchUp Roof

SketchUp Door Detail

SketchUp Door Handle

SketchUp Final Result

SketchUp Video Tutorial

SketchUp Demo Video

Click here for SketchUp

5. Udesignit 3D Garage Shed

Udesignit 3D Garage Shed doesn’t differ much with most of the shed design apps. It has a simple user interface and plenty of tips from the Help menu to make it easy to use. In this aspect, the Help menu earns some points for the Udesignit 3D Garage Shed. The controls, however, doesn’t always seem to work. It can get tricky trying to undo an action or simply choosing the color of your choice.

To create a shed, choose the system unit of your choice, set the external dimensions and choose 3D. You can customize the directions again in the Dimensions icon found on the right of the screen. The features appear as icons and are located at the left, right and above the screen.

Features

  • Dimensions-setting
  • 3D view animation
  • Siding selection
  • Roofing selection
  • Doors selection
  • Windows selection
  • Paint sico color
  • Estimation material cost
  • View typical plan
  • Can be installed only on android

Pros

  • Easy to use
  • Has a material cost estimate feature

Cons

  • Limited features and design options
  • Can’t set external dimensions

Screenshots/Video:

Home ScreenSystem UnitsStart Model2DUser InterfaceSidingRoofDoorWindowsShuttersOrnementsDimensionsColorsToolsCameraMaterial Cost EstimateHelp 1Help 2Help 3Help 4Help 5Final ResultSaveVideo

Udesignit 3D Garage Shed Home Screen

Udesignit 3D Garage Shed System Units

Udesignit 3D Garage Shed Start Model

Udesignit 3D Garage Shed 2D

Udesignit 3D Garage Shed User Interface

Udesignit 3D Garage Shed Siding

Udesignit 3D Garage Shed Roof

Udesignit 3D Garage Shed Door

Udesignit 3D Garage Shed Windows

Udesignit 3D Garage Shed Shutters

Udesignit 3D Garage Shed Ornements

Dimensions

Udesignit 3D Garage Shed Colors

Udesignit 3D Garage Shed Tools

Udesignit 3D Garage Shed Camera

Udesignit 3D Garage Shed Material Cost Estimate

Udesignit 3D Garage Shed Help 1

Udesignit 3D Garage Shed Help 2

Udesignit 3D Garage Shed Help 3

Udesignit 3D Garage Shed Help 4

Udesignit 3D Garage Shed Help 5

Udesignit 3D Garage Shed Final Result

Udesignit 3D Garage Shed Save

Udesignit 3D Garage Shed Demo Video

Click here for Udesignit 3D Garage Shed







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