How to Design a Porch Online

Kenrick Callwood

Remodeling and home design was the realm of qualified professionals. The Internet makes it possible for you to design your ideal porch to the specifications you set, print out the design, and take it to the nearest do-it-yourself center to purchase the materials. This saves you time and money by giving the professionals at the center a finished plan that they can work from to get you the right tools and supplies necessary to build the porch with maximum efficiency.

Online tools make it easy to design a porch from the comfort of your own home.
  1. Design your porch with the "Lowe's Deck Designer Tool." Lowe's offers a free deck design tool that can create custom porches and decks with a few simple clicks. You must create a free account with the site before they can use the full options. Follow the simple onscreen instructions and drag and drop interface to place different design elements in the right places. Design elements include features like railing and stairs. You decide the height and building materials and the tool calculates the shopping list automatically. Once finished, save and print the design to use as a reference at the nearest DIY center.

  2. Create your porch design with the "Real Cedar" website. This tool begins the design session with the building code requirements. You must specify the load weights for the porch and stairs, as well as the post depths. You continue by selecting the porch shape. Drag and drop the desired upgrades like stairs and benches from the elements panel until the porch looks the way you want it. Select the type of wood to use and decking pattern to complete the design. Save your project when you finish. Print the project plans if you plan to use them as a shopping guide.

  3. Use "Timber Tech" to design the porch. This tool renders your design in full 3-D. You choose the basic shape from the list of available designs. You drag and drop deck elements as in the other two tools. Drag handles give you full control over the dimensions of the deck and any element you choose. As with the other tools, you may choose the building materials as well. However, Timber Tech allows you to run extra reports for your design specifications. You have the option to print the shopping list and design, show a cut list, or see the beam layout. You may also run a stress analysis test to verify that your porch is sturdy enough for daily use.