Setting Exact Wall Dimension Lengths

Reference Number: KB-00245
Last Modified: July 20, 2021

The information in this article applies to:

Home Designer Professional or Home Designer Architectural or Home Designer Suite


I would like to precisely position my walls so that they are exactly the dimensions that I want them to be. How can I move walls precisely using dimensions?


You can move most objects precisely by using dimensions

Home Designer allows you to draw each wall at the approximate length that you want, then use either temporary dimensions, or create dimension lines, and use those dimensions to position the walls with accuracy.  This allows you to confirm that all walls have the correct sizes and relative positions.  It also makes the task of laying out walls, as well as adding and positioning doors and windows, flow a lot more quickly and smoothly than would inputting each wall length individually as it is created.

 In this article, we will show you how to position your walls precisely using this feature using a simple example.

To adjust a wall's position

  1. For this first example, we will use a simple 4-walled rectangular structure as shown below.

    4-Walled Rectangular Structure

  2. Using the Select Objects tool, select the wall on the left with a single click.

    Showing the temporary dimensions of the structure 

    When you do, you should see some temporary dimensions display.

    Note: If you are using Home Designer Professional, you can toggle your Temporary Dimensions on and off by selecting View> Temporary Dimensions from the menu.

  3. When you place your cursor on one of these temporary dimensions, you should see your mouse cursor change from an arrow into a pointing finger .

    When hovering over a dimension the cursor changes into a hand 

    In most Home Designer templates, Temporary Dimensions will locate the "Wall Dimension Layer," which is typically also the Main Layer of framing in the majority of Wall Types.

  4. We want to move the position of the wall so we will click on the dimension that stretches across the building and now we can enter in the new distance we need and press Enter/Return on the keyboard to accept the change.

    Change the position of a wall by typing an exact dimension

  5. The wall should shift to the left or right to position itself to the new distance.

    The Wall Shifted Position

    When entering in a new dimension, you will see two mode buttons. Move Object and Move Both Ends.

    To keep the wall connected to the adjacent top and bottom walls we used the Move Both Ends option.

    Move Object would move the wall independently of the other walls it is connected to.

    These steps can also be followed using other types of dimensions such as Manual Dimensions or Automatic Dimensions.

To adjust a wall's length

  1. For the purposes of this example, we will use a more complex example, as shown below.

    More Complex Structure Example

  2. Using the Select Objects tool, select the left side wall with a single click.

  3. You may wish to Zoom In on the wall segment if you are having difficulty selecting or mousing over the dimension numbers.

    Now click on the dimension running along the wall and enter in a new length.

    Changing the wall length through temporary dimensions

    Depending on the settings in your version, you may already have Automatic Exterior Dimensions displayed along the length of the walls.  These dimensions may also be used to change the Wall Length.  By default, these also generally locate the Wall Dimension Layer which is also the Main Layer of Framing in most wall types.  Unlike temporary dimensions, you can select Automatic Exterior Dimensions and edit where they start and end along different layers along the walls, which will change them into manual dimensions.

    You can also draw dimensions manually, such as by using the Interior Dimension tool available in most versions of Home Designer, which will only locate interior wall surfaces.

    To learn more about how to use the dimension tools in Home Designer, please refer to the software under the Help> Launch Help menu.

    • While entering in the new length, you can choose to:

    • Move the top end .

    • Move both ends .

    • Move the bottom end .

  4. Press Enter/Return on the keyboard to accept the change.

    Building after the wall length has been changed

    Notice that in this example, because of the new wall length we entered, there is no longer the small bumpout at the top of the structure because it now extends out into one continuous wall.