Virtual Architect Instant Makeover is different from any other interior design software out there. It lives up to its name by giving you the tools to improve your home’s interior. However, it does so in a very simplified way. Instead of creating a blueprint of a room in the 2D view that you can then convert to a virtual 3D view, you simply upload a photo of the room and make changes to the image.
Once you scan a photo into the program, you map out which portions you want to update. You then highlight those areas and insert materials, textures and colors from the program's catalog to get an idea of what the room will look like after you remodel it. You can toggle between before and after views to get perspective on the changes you plan to make and possibly rethink them along the way.
Virtual Architect Instant Makeover has a selection of sample plans you can use, which is a good way to get a feel for the program. The sample plans let you see how certain colors and elements look together and can give you ideas for how to update your own images once you bring them into the program.
This design software is very straightforward, so it’s easy to use. It also offers hints, and there are helpful resources embedded in the program. Since it’s mostly for revamping designs in imported photos and remodeling designs in a 3D view, it doesn’t have construction tools. However, as a DIY tool for remodeling rooms, it is one of the best interior design programs. For example, its photo importing tool is also one of the best we tested. In fact, it was one of only two import tools we reviewed to receive a perfect score.
That said, if you want to knock out a wall and reconstruct a living area, this program is not a good choice. For projects that involve a lot of reconstruction, it's best to have a program that lets you create a 2D plan with the structural changes you want to make and then convert it to a 3D view.
Further, since this software focuses on updating existing structures and real objects in your home, it doesn't have an object library like other programs. However, it does have a selection of windows and doors you can insert into your photo design to see how they fit in your room. It’s harder to change doors and windows in this program than those with 2D views, but it is nice to have as an option.
The software’s developer offers good support options. You can access video tutorials on its site to help get you started. It also has a helpful FAQs section and community forums where you can find answers to many of the questions you may encounter as you learn to use the program. You can also contact customer support directly, but you have to pay extra for phone support. There is a free live chat option.
This is the cheapest interior design software offered by Virtual Architect – you can pick it up for about $25. And while it isn’t our best value pick, it’s a great program to quickly makeover your existing home. If you're looking for a more comprehensive design experience, consider this program’s big brother and our top pick – Virtual Architect Ultimate Home Design.