Uploading floorplans in sketchup

JenBLFebruary 19, 2014

I new to the forum and have been browsing for a week or so. I've noticed many of you seem to know how to easily make adjustments to floorplans others have posted and I want to know how to do this to my own.

We have houseplans that we had a designer draw up a year ago. We are now ready to get serious about building but there are now several changes we would like to make to the floor plan. I've been trying to play around with the design so that I have a fairly certain idea of what I want before I go back to the designer. I've been doing this the old fashion way on paper - but would love to be able to do it in a program.

What's the best way to get my plan into Sketchup? I have all the plans in PDF, but it looks like Sketchup won't support that. And I don't know how to convert PDF to jpeg.

I've been watching youtube videos to learn how to use the program. And I suppose I could play around with Sketchup long enough and figure out how to draw the plans from scratch - but that seems tedious if there is a simple way to upload the plans.


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I've used this online converter to get pdfs to jpg format quite a bit. It works well for me.

Here is a link that might be useful: Free Online PDF Converter

    Bookmark   February 19, 2014 at 2:10PM
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You have to actually draw it IN Sketchup. It's not gonna take PDF and do the work for you. Most people in here that do "alterations" on plans do cut and pastes, not actual design manipulations. The few that do, already own the expensive professional software to do that, or have already mastered Sketchup. One other software that is a bit easier to some than Sketchup is the Chief Architect lite versions sold as Better Homes and Gardens software. It's not free, though it's totally worth the $200 for the architectural version if you are going to be building a home. That's a drop in the bucket in your budget.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2014 at 3:13PM
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ZG - thanks for the converter. I will try that out.

live wire - I'm inpatient and had my drawing of the changes I want for the house - so I picked up my phone, took a picture and was able to upload that. I traced the picture in sketchup. Some things I can get to work for me - others have me baffled. I will look into the other software. I'm a very visual person and like to plan, plan, plan! You are right, $200 isn't much in the big picture.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2014 at 4:10PM
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I tried Sketchup (drawing from scratch) and found it very difficult to use- and I'm pretty good at software/figuring things out.

I'd love to know about any free/easy software to help with even simple thinks like furniture placement/sizing. I notice lots of people show floor plans with pretty cars and sofas! Would love some info on that too.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2014 at 8:14PM
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Give sketchup a second chance. Did you see the youtube video tutorials?
I use AutoCAD and to add the "pretty cars" I use Photoshop.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2014 at 10:07PM
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I bought both HomeDesigner (the lite version of Chief Architect) and Sketchup Pro.

For my use as a non-architect, Sketchup is way better. It is much more expressive, and I have used it to design everything from large parts of my house (interior and exterior) to molding details, cabinets, windows, spiral staircases etc.

HomeDesigner was frustrating in that it had limitations on the types of cabinets that I could drop in. It was very hard for me to figure out how to model something more complex than a standard single- or two-storey home (my house is a 3-level side-split).

Since Sketchup is just a free form drawing tool, you really can do anything with it. There are some good add-ins, like Joint Push/Pull that help with issues in the default toolset. If you buy the Pro version, you can export orthographic projections with Layout. Yes there is a learning curve to all of these tools. If you didn't want to climb that hill, you'd hire a full service architect.

For me, having a good visualization of the space in 3D was very important. My cabinet and trim and other models have become a reference for the builder (the site supervisor has Sketchup on his computer in his onsite office and regularly syncs my models). I have spent many hours of my time on these models. Possibly more time than my architect has spent on his end of the project. So it has to be something you're really into.

    Bookmark   February 19, 2014 at 10:45PM
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I was looking at the Chief Architect Home Designer program. Looks like it would be worth it for $200 - I have a few OCD issues with planning these things. I've been know to draw out my own floorplans and have them laminated so I could play around with them. This looks so much easier!
Now I just need to figure out what to delete off my maxed out computer to have room for the program!

    Bookmark   February 19, 2014 at 10:49PM
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I've had a great time designing our next home with Home Designer Suite. What I really like about it over the more freeform tools is that it understands that you're drawing a house. So walls connect logically, roofs can be auto-built with just a few parameters to change them, etc.

Good luck :)

    Bookmark   February 20, 2014 at 12:51AM
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Are you using the free version of SketchUp or SketchUp Pro?

What operating system you are you using?

    Bookmark   February 20, 2014 at 8:02AM
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Nepool. Below is a web address to a very simple tool that can be used for checking furniture placement and room sizes. It was on a previous thread on this website. The furniture choices aren't great but you can adjust the size of all the pieces.

Use the Make Room to plan any space in your home with virtually every piece of furniture available at Urban Barn. ÃÂ When your masterpiece is complete you can save your space, email it, or print it out and use it as your shopping list.


    Bookmark   February 20, 2014 at 8:18PM
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www.urbanbarn.com is great, thanks!!!!

    Bookmark   February 20, 2014 at 10:10PM
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