Locating Sample Plans

Reference Number: KB-00104
Last Modified: July 21, 2021

The information in this article applies to:

Home Designer Professional or Home Designer Architectural or HomeDesigner Suite


Where can I find sample plans to view in my Home Designer software program? 


Various sample plans can be located on the Home Designer website, and can be downloaded and opened within your software version for viewing purposes. These can be a great way to see what the software is capable of, and to get an idea of how it was accomplished. You can then take that knowledge and apply it to your own designs.

Locating and Opening Sample Plans

  1. Navigate to the Sample Plans section of the Gallery on the Home Designer website.

  2. Click on the option to download a plan that you would like to view in Home Designer.

    If prompted by your web browser on where to save the file, choose an easy-to-find location to save the plan to, such as your Desktop.

  3. Once the download completes, go to your Desktop or Downloads folder on your system and locate the downloaded file.

    • On a Windows machine, right-click on the compressed/zipped folder and select Extract All.
    • On a macOS machine, double-click on the zipped folder to extract its contents.

  4. Once a folder is extracted, you may find the following file types inside:

    • .plan -  This is the Sample Drawing file.
    • .layout - This is the Sample Layout file. This file contains an arrangement of views from the .plan file in a printable format. This file can only be opened by Home Designer Pro or Chief Architect Premier. It is not compatible with Home Designer Architectural or less advanced Home Designer versions.
    • .jpg - This is a thumbnail preview of the .plan and/or .layout files.
    • .zip - This is a packet of associated and required file references for the .plan file. Do NOT extract this file.

  5. To view the drawing, launch Home Designer and select File> Open Plan .

  6. In the Open Plan File dialog, browse for and select the plan you would like to open, then click the Open button.

    You may now view, edit, and otherwise interact with this sample drawing within the limitations of your version.

    Note: Bear in mind that some Sample Plans may have elements not editable by your version. For example, Custom Countertops can only be selected, modified and deleted in versions of the software that have this tool.