Creating an Attached Porch

Reference Number: KB-01086
Last Modified: July 16, 2015

The information in this article applies to:

Home Designer Professional or Home Designer Architectural or Home Designer Suite or Home Designer Interiors or Home Designer Essentials or Home Designer Landscape & Deck


I would like to know how to create an attached porch on my plan.  How can I accomplish this task in Home Designer?


For the purposes of this example, we will show you how to accomplish this task in a new plan, then you can take what you learn and apply it to your own design.

To create the initial structure

  1. To begin, select File> New Plan  to start a new, blank plan in Home Designer.

  2. Next, select Build> Wall> Straight Exterior Wall  then click and drag out your walls to create a basic rectangular structure.

    For our example, we will create a basic 30' x 20' structure.

  3. Next, select the left wall of the building, and click on the Open Object  edit button to display the Wall Specification dialog.

  4. On the Roof panel, place a check mark in Full Gable Wall.

  5. Repeat this process on the right wall of the building, so that both opposing 20' walls are marked as Full Gable.

Once your basic structure is created

  1. Next, select Build> Railing and Deck (Railing)> Straight Railing , then click and drag out three railings to create an enclosed room on the front of the structure.

    For our example, the front railing will be 7' out from the exterior wall.

  2. After creating the railings, use the Select Objects tool to select the newly created room, then click on the Open Object edit button to display the Room Specification dialog.

  3. Change the Room Type to Porch, and click OK.

  4. Next, select the left railing, and click on the Open Object  edit button to display the Railing Specification dialog and on the General panel, place a checkmark in the Invisible checkbox. 

    On the 
    Roof panel, place a checkmark in the Full Gable wall option, then click OK to close the Railing Specification dialog and apply your changes.

  5. Repeat this process for the right railing as well, so that both are marked as Invisible and Full Gable railings.

  6. Now, select Build> Roof> Build Roof  to display the Build Roof dialog.

    • On the Roof panel, make sure that Auto Rebuild Roofs* is checked, then set the overall Pitch that you want for your main structure.
      *Auto Rebuild Roofs is not available in Home Designer Essentials.

    • For the purposes of this example, we will set the Pitch (in 12) to 12"

    • Once you have completed making changes in this dialog, click OK.

  7. Finally, let's take a 3D Camera  view to see our results so far.

Now that we have created our walls and railings, as well as specified the overall main pitch for the structure, we just need to define the front railing.

To define the front railing

  1. Use the Select Objects  tool to select the front railing, and click on the Open Object edit tool.

  2. On the Roof section, under Pitch, place a checkmark in Upper Pitch, to allow for editing of the Upper pitch.

    • Set the Pitch to 4"

    • Set the Upper Pitch to 12"

    • Set the In From Baseline value to 7' (84")

      Note: Recall that 7' is the distance that the front railing was from the exterior wall, which is where we want the change in pitch to occur for the roof plane.

  3. On the Rail Style panel:

  • Under Railing Type, move the radio button to No Rail

  • Under Newels/Posts, check Post to Beam

  • On the Newels/Balusters panel, change the newel spacing to 192" to adjust the Spacing value so that you will only have three, instead of five, posts across the front of your structure.

  • Click OK to apply these changes.

  • Take a 3D Camera  view to see the results.


    Note: In Home Designer Essentials, which does not have the Auto Rebuild Roofs option, you will need to select Build> Roof> Build Roof again and click OK to regenerate the roof based on these changes.