Sections

Weather Forecast

Close

From floor plans to tidy bedrooms: 9 free apps for mastering home design, decor and organization

ColorSnap by Sherwin-Williams allows users to match colors from a photo (right) and virtually try paint on their own walls (left). Courtesy of Sherwin-Williams1 / 5
Morpholio Board users can upload their own photos or add inspiration from Pinterest to create a interior design mood board. Courtesy of Morpholio2 / 5
Houzz provides all-around home inspiration and shoppable photos. Courtesy of Houzz3 / 5
Curate helps users visualize art on their walls. Courtesy of Curate4 / 5
Zillow Digs offers project cost estimates (left) and style and room-based search functions (right). Courtesy of Zillow Digs5 / 5

It's easy to find an app for nearly everything. For the home specifically, such apps exist to design floor plans, find home inspiration, simulate paint colors and clean and organize rooms.

"I think apps have turned our phones into tools," says 32-year-old Alexandra Young of West Fargo. "We constantly carry this tool in our purse or in our pocket that can make the whole process of owning a home, decorating a home, building a home — whatever you may be doing — more efficient."

The teacher first began using home-related apps like Houzz when her dad — a builder who specializes in apartment and office construction — began laying out plans for her and her husband's new home. With her father's limited knowledge in residential construction, Young looked to apps for inspiration and direction.

Thanks to many home-focused apps allowing multiple users like the designer, builder and homeowners to communicate, Young found it easier to tackle the overall process.

Here are nine free apps that aid in home layout, interior design, cleaning and organization.

Houzz

Price: Free (iOS, Android)

With more than 5 million images sorted according to style, room and location, Houzz allows users to browse, search and save their photos. Young says she used the app primarily for idea boards she later shared with designers.

"It was easy because it lets you search images by style — contemporary, craftsman — that helped me narrow down my style, too," she says."It also got me and my husband on the same page. 'What do you like? This is what I like. Do you like this, too?'"

The app also features shoppable photos.

"People may put the color of paint — and you can click on it — or it lets you link to the chandelier they have (in the photo) then you can purchase it," Young explains.

Zillow Digs

Price: Free (iOS)

Zillow Digs — not to be mistaken with the real estate-focused app — acts like Pinterest for the home only. When users open the app, they can indicate their style preferences to personalize inspiration when they search. Users can browse images by space, color, style and project estimates, saving photos to in-app boards.

The most unique feature is its free cost estimates for an array of interior projects, helping users choose their next most affordable project.

The app also offers advice from interior designers and connects users with local experts.

Morpholio Board

Price: Free (iOS, Android)

For those who enjoy creating mood boards, Morpholio Board is the digital answer. The app combines a product library with tools that allow users to layout, collage, illustrate and create an design mood board. Users can also upload photos of a product, their own home and even pins from Pinterest, saving boards to camera roll to easily share.

Home Design 3D

Price: Free (iOS, Android)

Home Design 3D gives homeowners a blank canvas and the tools they need to design their home, inside and out. Users are able to design floor plans, furnish and decorate the home, view a 3D image of the home both inside and outside and import, export and share their visions with friends and family.

The sister app, Home Design 3D Outdoor & Garden gives, users a chance to design outdoor gardens, landscaping, seating and more.

MagicPlan

Price: Free (iOS)

When users take photos of their home spaces, MagicPlan converts those images into floor plans with measurements. By marking walls, floors, ceiling, doorways, etc., the app analyzes the snapshot, computes the space and generates a 2D floor plan. For an added fee, plans can be exported to PDF, JPG, DXF format to share with designers, architects, realtors and others participating in the remodeling or building process.

Curate

Price: Free (iOS, Android)

For those who just can't seem to get their walls decorated appropriately, Curate is the go-to tool. Users can upload a photo of walls in their living room, bedroom, bathroom, etc. — wherever they may need to hang art — and add in measurements. Completing the same process with pieces of artwork, the app then allows users to visually try art on the wall, creating a mock up that's scaled appropriately depending on size.

ColorSnap

Price: Free (iOS, Android)

With 32 years of experience in the paint business, Rick Burgess — district manager at Sherwin Williams Dakotas District Office — recalls earlier years when homeowners had a hard time picking wall colors and would resort to professionals for help. But the times have changed in 2017.

With ColorSnap, the DIYer can try before they buy.

Users can upload or take a picture of a room, match colors and estimate how much paint they need for a project — all in one app.

"The part I love about the app is when I want to match a color," Burgess says. "I can take a picture of — let's just say — a pillow with 10 different colors on it and it will show me every closest Sherwin Williams color — all 10 of them."

The app, which virtually paints a room, is generally meant for interior scenes but Burgess says homeowners can use it on exterior projects as well.

Other similar paint apps include ColorCapture by Benjamin Moore, Valspar Color Connect, ColorSmart by BEHR and Project Color by The Home Depot.

Neat and tidy apps

For those who want to keep their home clean and organized, these two free apps (iOS, Android) offer assistance for the whole family.

BrightNest

• Acts as personal assistant, offering friendly reminders for tasks such as spring cleaning, changing smoke detector batteries and other must-do items

• Encourages homeowners take an "interactive home quiz" to determine the cleaning tips and reminders to receive in app's feed when setting up the app

• Motivates users to accomplish home improvement and DIY projects

OurHome

• Allows admin to add multiple users in order to assign tasks and manage events

• "Gamified task system" motivates children to complete tasks in return for points, 30 minutes of screen time, $5 allowance or other incentives

• Features in-app calendar to keep track of events, appointments, birthdays, etc.

• Offers shared grocery lists where users can choose default categories, create their own or make lists based on past purchases

Alexandra Floersch

Alexandra Floersch has worked for Forum Communications since February 2015. She is a content producer and photographer who enjoys writing about finance, fashion and home.

(701) 451-5730
Advertisement
randomness