Learn to create a comprehensive house design?

I’m working on a house design in SketchUp with the idea of eventually actually building it. I’ve got an overall plan that I’m very happy with, but I feel like there are many details left to consider when it comes to creating a viable plan and a usable set of construction drawings. Are there any websites or books that I can study to learn more about how to plan for electrical, plumbing, framing and the rest? In the end I would hire somebody to go over it all and make sure it’s up to code, won’t fall down, etc, but I’d like to get as far along as I can on my own. Thank you!

Here is a good (imo) and cheap book to get you started. I bought a copy when it came out and I think that it can still be relevant today.


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Looks great, thanks so much!

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As you know, the design and building of a house is a complex process that involves many professionals (Architects, Engineers, Builders, skilled trades, etc.). The relationships between these individuals relies on effective communications. SketchUp (SU) can be an effective communications tool for a project of this nature, in the hands of these professionals.

But just because I (as a homeowner) can create a detailed model of the house, does not mean it can be built solely with SU models and drawings. Without knowledge and experience SU cannot produce build-able projects. For example, the 3D Warehouse has some very impressive house models. Very accurate and detailed that were created using SU, but may not be suitable for use by design or builder professionals.

That said, there are some excellent resources in the SU community. Check out extensions provided by John Brock and Nathaniel Wilkerson (and many others via search). Of note, and to your original question, there is a SU 3D Basecamp-20018 Video by John Brock on “Constructability Modeling” that you might find useful.

Good luck, hope this helps …

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This is extremely helpful, thank you! I wasn’t aware SketchUp had so many plugins available. Gives me lots to research.

If you want to generate traditional, 2D construction documents using SketchUp and Layout … then I recommend you take a look at Nick Sonder’s book: SketchUp & Layout for Architecture. It is a comprehensive guide … start to finish.

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This is amazing, exactly what I was looking for. Thank you!