Editing the Shape and Size of the Terrain Perimeter

Reference Number: KB-00566
Last Modified: July 21, 2021

The information in this article applies to:

Home Designer Professional or Home Designer Architectural or HomeDesigner Suite


How do I adjust the shape and size of my terrain perimeter to accurately reflect my lot?


The Terrain Perimeter is defined as a closed polyline defining the boundary of the terrain that generates in 3D views and of the contour lines that generate in floor plan view, as such, it can be edited in the same way as any basic polyline.

Terrain perimeters are polylines that can be edited into any shape.

Below is an image with some of the edit handles you may want to familiarize yourself with before editing your terrain perimeter. 

This is an image detailing what all the edit handles are for.


If you are unfamiliar with the functions of these edit handles, within your software, select Help> Launch Help. Click on the Contents tab to view the Reference Manual by chapter navigate to the to Editing Objects and read through this chapter.

To change the shape of your Terrain Perimeter

  1. By default in many template styles, a 50' x 100' line square Terrain Perimeter is created when a new plan is started.

    If the Terrain Perimeter is not present, select Terrain> Create Terrain Perimeter .

    If necessary, use the Zoom tools to zoom out so that the Terrain Perimeter is visible.

  2. Use the Select Objects  tool to select an edge of the Terrain Perimeter that you want to edit.

  3. Once selected, the edit tools for the Terrain Perimeter object become available.

  4. The Break Line  tool will create a new corner edit handle at the location along an edge where you click. 

    If you click and drag one of the edit handles on either side of the partial break, the edge moves at a right angle to itself and another edge forms, connecting the moved edge with the one on the other side that does not move.  

  5. The Change Line/Arc  tool will change the selected segment from a line to an arc or vice versa.

  6. Once you have approximated the shape of your lot, you are ready to change its size.

To change the dimensions of your Terrain Perimeter

  1. With the Select Objects  tool active, click on the edge of your Terrain Perimeter that you want to adjust.

  2. Once selected, click on the Open Object  edit tool to open the Terrain Specification dialog.

  3. On the Selected Line panel (or Selected Arc panel, if the selected segment is an arc):

    • Enter in the desired Length (in inches or millimeters) of the selected line segment of your Terrain Perimeter.

    • Enter in the desired Angle (in degrees) of the segment. 

    Note: In Home Designer Professional, if you have values in a different format than degrees, such as in Minutes and Seconds or in a Bearing, you can select the Num Style button to change how to enter in the Angle value.

  4. Once you have completed adjusting the properties of this first line or arc segment, click OK to apply the changes.

  5. Continue this same procedure, selecting the next line to edit in a clockwise fashion until you adjust all of the lines that make up your Terrain Perimeter.