PhilJM

House Addition and Separate Garage - advice on how to start

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I'm using Designer Pro and watched all the videos, can't say I remember everything though..

 

My question is a general question. I have a lot with an older house on it. I want to build an addition, and also a separate garage. I'd like to draw up the original house first but I don't want it in the calculations for materials and so forth. I'd also like the garage to be calculated separately.

 

It's also a sloped lot, so I do want to have the elevations correct for the lot as there will be a walkout basement apartment.

 

At a high level, what's the best approach ?

 

Here's what things look like at the moment:

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I see you said Pro, but you can help everyone by adding this info, and the version (2018, 2019 etc) to your signature (see mine for an example) by clicking on your user name at the top right of the page, click Account Settings, then Signature on the left.

 

Doing so makes it always available, and keeps others from having to hunt for it.

 

Also, goo to turn on signatures.

 

SIG.thumb.jpg.c7e861d9bf4c64f7ad43297990e0d6fe.jpg

 

----

 

Resources for self help:

 

The built in Help System (always a good place to start)

 

 

 

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Commonly a detached garage is usually lower, floor height wise than the main house for drainage purposes and so you do not need a ramp to enter and leave the garage with a vehicle. The software will treat all enclosed structures the same in terms of floor and ceiling heights so it is on you to calculate the differences in floor and finished ceiling heights of two independent structures. New users must understand that the software is simply a finely tuned mechanical device which depends utterly upon your knowledge and competence to guide it to an acceptable result. If you do not learn and customize Edit - Default Settings to reflect your actual or intended buildings, you then just get what the software's out-of-the-box settings deliver. Find out how to set up your plan file and then obtain something useful for yourself.

 

DJP

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I updated my signature as you mentioned, Solver. Thanks. Also I found the tutorial on plot plans so I have my lot properly defined.

 

I've gone through the links and searched the forum and this seems to be the best approach:

  1. Create a template first with defaults and preferences set to your liking.
  2. Use the template to create a plan of the existing lot and existing structures (for example MyHouse_Existing.plan). You could skip this version of the file and go straight to 3 below, but this gives you a good reset point to start from if you need it. Storage is cheap..
  3. Copy this plan to one called MyHouse_Complete.plan. This will have all 3 structures, the existing house, the addition, and the separate garage. It will serve as the master plan but not as the materials list.
  4. Copy the master plan (once done) to MHouse_Addition.plan and delete the original house (as much as possible). This will allow for the creation of the materials list. Alternatively, you can split it into separate ones for the addition and the garage.

I've seen several posts asking this question or something similar. It sounds like it would be a good idea to have a way to identify items that are existing (unless there is and I haven't found it yet). That way you could easily design an existing structure (exclude it from the materials list) and then add structure to it.

 

Does this make sense ?

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4 minutes ago, PhilJM said:

Does this make sense ?

 

Yes it does. 

 

Consider doing a test run. Just simple one room structures. Go through the process and decide how you want to do things, then start the real project.

 

You can create new materials -- copy and rename existing materials and use them in your existing or new construction too.

 

You could have Siding - Existing, and Siding - New, for example. Both will show in the materials list, but you will be able to see the difference.

 

You could create a new wall type using these new materials and the material list will show them as unique line items.

 

If you assign a non framing material to a wall and build framing, that wall will not have framing generated.

 

ht1.thumb.jpg.c004d8107c2ba70aa212b2b7cd3c8f04.jpg

 

Change the Type to something other than Framing, or choose another material and give it a Type of Framing.

 

With Pro, you can delete framing to, so in a Perspective Framing Overview, or in Plan view showing framing, simply delete what you do not want.

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As a fellow newbie I really second Eric's suggestion to test/learn the software by building simple one or 2 room buildings to get the hang of specific things you want to do in the software.

 

When  I get stuck trying to accomplish something on a more complete design, I'll jump out of it and make a simple test building to learn how something in the application works, like how roofs react, etc. It saves a lot of adjustment to your real plan. David's videos are good, because he helps fix problems people have, ones you probably will run in to.

 

Right now, I'm mostly looking at home designs online and trying to re-create them. I usually run into multiple problems trying to re-create some room or roof or other thing, and spend a few hours digging in to all the online reference and tutorials about the software to overcome the situations.

 

I've also found that using the space planning tools is a quick way to play "what if" very useful. After you set all your defaults in the plan, then use the space planning tools to lay out your rooms, closets, hallways and such you can hit "build house" and the walls will be were you need them. You can even do multiple floors in the space planning tool, you just need to "build house" every floor separately. It's a good way to go into the camera view and get an idea what the rooms will feel like in size and flow.

 

If you have the floorplan of your current home, it might be faster to use the space planning tools to re-create it than to build every wall by hand. Especially if you're just using it for reference.

 

I've been trying to create my plans to auto build everything. I know in the end I'll have to make adjustments here or there, but if you stick with as much auto build as possible you can resize rooms and move things without having to manually move everything around it too. But manual works too.

 

After I build a plan for a couple days, I've learned enough about the program to start over. My third and fourth attempts are always much better and come together much quicker from all the learning I did getting to this point. Trying to micro adjust a bad start is just too much work sometimes. Save revisions a lot too. Like My_Home_V1.1 My_Home_V1.2 etc.

 

I don't remember where I saw it, but you can make a material with cross hatching and such and just paint your existing home with it at the end to note the old and the new.

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3 hours ago, a5uperman said:

As a fellow newbie I really second Eric's suggestion to test/learn the software by building simple one or 2 room buildings to get the hang of specific things you want to do in the software.

 

I also agree with this sentiment in that I too was once a "Newby" and have "been there and done that" wrong so many times until I just one day buckled down and learned the software, After that, it is now a simple pleasure to use the software to create aesthetic and useful structures for people to enjoy. Forget the frustrations and get on to the Joy of Creating as soon as is possible for you.

 

DJP

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