+44330 808 1616

What’s the best alternative to Metropix?

Admit it. You kind of hate using Metropix. You’re an estate agent with a passion for selling property, not making floor plans. This isn’t what you signed up for. So now you’re googling “alternative to Metropix” in the hopes that there’s an easier way.

Well, you’re in luck! There are a few options available. Read on.

Sorry, what was Metropix again?

If you’re reading this article then you probably already know what Metropix is (and we’ve already covered it in some detail here), but let’s go over the basics just in case.

Metropix is a popular service for creating property floor plans, used by estate agents nationwide. Its drag-and-drop system allows you to quickly place doors, windows and other features. You can extend the walls, click to add rooms, and just keep building until your plan is complete.

Once you’re done, you can either use the Metropix link or download the image to show off your property to potential buyers. This gives them a good idea of the size, layout and features of a property before they’ve even visited.

A lot of estate agents aren’t super keen on using Metropix, but it’s pretty well known so it’s got a bit of a monopoly on property floor plans (Do not pass Go, do not collect £200).

If you’d like to try an alternative to Metropix, read on!

alternative-metropix

PlanUp

PlanUp is a simple yet powerful piece of software for creating floor plans. Its functionality is similar to Metropix, with the ability to enter the wall dimensions, label the rooms and add doors, windows, etc. You can also add photos into your floor plans.

The monthly subscription costs £39.99 + VAT and allows you to create 2D and 3D floor plans across any number of devices.

RoomSketcher

RoomSketcher is an American-based company offering floor plan software for estate agents and interior designers. You can create 2D or 3D floor plans and can even furnish and decorate your properties (though, admittedly, that’s probably more of interest to interior designers).

The floor planning software comes as part of the annual subscription. Similar to Metropix, you also need to purchase credits to create your projects. The VIP option costs $49 per year, while the Pro version is $99.

RapidSketch

Another American company, RapidSketch offers a similar service to the others, so we’ll focus on the differences. You can scan your initial sketch or blueprints and import them into the software to trace, making life a little easier. It also does lots of calculations for you, such as wall angles and room area, which is pretty nifty if that’s something you need.

You can purchase a licence for $149, with multi-buy discounts if you want to use it on more than one machine. They also offer a free 15-day trial so you can try before you buy.

Homestyler

Homestyler offers a free basic tool to create floor plans in a similar drag-and-drop style to those we’ve already looked at. You can add furniture and there’s also a camera feature, allowing you to look round the rooms you’ve created (a bit like Google Street View). Projects can be saved as as public or private, and you can export them in PNG or DWG format.

Get someone else to do it for you

As you can see, there are quite a few alternatives to Metropix, but they all have the same drawback: You still have to do all the work.

You’ve already gone to the property, taken the measurements, sketched out your initial floor plan in pencil, and now you’re supposed to fiddle about on the computer to make it look nice? No matter what software you’re using, it’s a hassle.

If drag-and-drop is starting to feel like a drag, just get someone else to do it for you!

Here at Elements Property, we’ve got loads of experience in Floor Plan Sketch Conversion. Send us a pencil sketch and we’ll work our magic on it, delivering a professional floor plan in just 3 hours!

We offer a clear, flat rate for floor plans and you can even try our Floor Plan Sketch Conversion service for free! There’s no need to debate further; sign up for your free trial today using promocode BLOG32.

LEARN MORE ABOUT FLOORPLANS

 

An estate agent’s guide to Metropix

Metropix – heard of it? Tons of agents use it but how does it work? Is it any good? And how much does it cost?

So, you’re sketching out floor plans. Chances are you’ve heard of Metropix, as tons of estate agents and floor plan providers use it to convert hand-drawn sketches into finished floor plan files.

Some love it, some are fed up to the back teeth of using it. Either way, it’s very widely used so it must be useful, right?

If you’re new to creating floor plans and plan (pardon the pun) to include them in your property listings, read on to learn all about this popular software, and decide if it sounds like the right one for you.

What is Metropix?

On the surface, it’s a pretty simple idea. When you’re at the property, you measure and sketch out some rooms with a pencil and paper, marking on the windows, stairs, cupboards, toilets, sinks etc.

But then you need to turn that pencil sketch masterpiece (or abomination) in your notebook into a sleek, digital floor plan. That’s where something like Metropix comes in.

Metropix is a website and web-based software developed by Landmark that you can use to create digital floor plans for marketing properties.

It’s been around since 2005 and millions of plans have been made using it.

How does it work?

You’ve got a few options when it comes to Metropix. Your choice will depend on what you want—or how busy you are!

Draw Your Own

The first option allows you to draw your own floor plans with a drag-and-drop tool. Click to add rooms, resize the walls, then simply drop in features like doors and windows.

Metropix reckons that an average 3-bed house should take under 3 minutes to complete with its software, but if you talk to agents who actually use it, they’d tell you it can take a fair bit longer (and it’s not exactly their favorite of tasks!).

Here’s an in-depth video tutorial from Metropix themselves on to create a floor plan yourself using their Draw Your Own tool.

If you’re not particularly tech-savvy, or you’ve got lots of tricky properties, you might not fancy the DIY route. But before you dismiss this option, remember that we can help out with this fiddly bit (more on this later in the article).

AutoDraw

If you’re too busy to draw your own floor plans (let’s face it, you’ve got better things to be doing), Metropix offers a service where you upload a scan of your initial sketch and they’ll make it for you.

The floor plan will be ready and waiting in your Metropix account within 24 hours.

Here at Elements, we offer the same thing where we convert your sketch using the Metropix software for you, but we do it much quicker and cheaper than they do!

What does Metropix cost?

You’ve got several options, and you can either pay monthly or per plan. We’ve outlined the most popular options below. To compare exactly what you get for your money, take a look at Metropix’s pricing page.

Standard subscription

You pay £44.90 + VAT per month and you can produce up to 20 floor plans each month using the Draw Your Own tool. This works out at £2.25 + VAT per plan.

Premium subscription

You pay £59.75 + VAT per month for up to 20 floor plans and the same features as the standard subscription, but this also includes 3D floor plan and Google Earth upgrades. This works out at £2.99 + VAT per plan.

Pay As You Go

If you just want a one-off floor plan from time to time, there’s a Pay As You Go option where you pay £7.95 + VAT per floor plan using the Draw Your Own tool.

They also call this a ‘Single Subscription Plan’ but don’t get confused; you won’t be billed each month. You only pay each time you need a floor plan.

AutoDraw

If you want Metropix to convert your sketch for you, they charge £7.95 + VAT per plan. Bear in mind that this is on top of the monthly subscription that you pay.

If you are using the Pay As You Go option, you’ll pay £7.95 + VAT for the floor plan, PLUS £7.95 + VAT for AutoDraw. This makes a total cost of £15.90 + VAT per plan.

Additional features and upgrades

There are lots of standard features, as well as paid upgrades. For a full breakdown, check out the Metropix Products page but these features include:

Standard:

  • Access to millions of existing floor plans via PlanBank that you can use as templates
  • Combined floor plans and photos
  • Bespoke colour schemes
  • A space planner allowing house-hunters to place furniture into the rooms
  • Branding

Upgrades:

  • 3D floor plans
  • 3D walkthroughs
  • Interactive 3D Google Earth plans, showing the property in its surroundings
  • Maps

Pros of Metropix

  • You can create digital floor plans yourself with their drag-and-drop software
  • PlanBank is useful for finding and customising existing plans of properties with a similar layout
  • There’s no need to download software, as plans are created and stored in the cloud using their online software
  • Metropix’s floor plans are compatible with all major property management solutions and agency software

Cons of Metropix

  • Creating plans yourself can take up valuable time
  • Metropix can be very fiddly for creating complex layouts, and it can become pretty frustrating to use
  • AutoDraw takes 24 hours for you to get your completed plans back, and has additional charges

Floorplan Sketch Conversion from Elements

If you want a floorplan but Metropix isn’t for you, the Elements Property Floorplan Sketch Conversion service is the answer!

We can create the floorplan for you in a style almost identical to Metropix in a way that’s similar to their own AutoDraw service but much better. Here’s why:

  1. We create your finished floor plans in around 3-4 hours
  2. We charge £6.95 + VAT per plan (no monthly subscription)
  3. We can create plans in AutoCAD where there’s much more options for customisation
  4. We’ll send you a high-resolution file of your finished floorplan

 

Like the look of what we can do for you? Would you like to check out our Floorplan Sketch Conversion service for FREE? Here’s a promo code for 3 complimentary orders: Simply enter BLOG31 when creating an account 🙂

START FREE TRIAL

 

How to draw a floor plan

So you appreciate all the good things a floor plan can offer and want to know how to draw a floor plan yourself, awesome.

Like many other agents or energy assessors, maybe you’re already creating floor plans but find it too time-consuming to make the floor plans yourself in software like Metropix.

Here at Elements, we’ve got your back. We can take your hand-drawn sketch that, by the way, does not need to be a masterpiece and convert it into a finished floor plan using the industry standard – AutoCAD.

Read on to discover a simple, cost-effective way to get accurate, bespoke, professional floor plans for your properties. Here’s a simple guide on how to make a floor plan for a house with a pencil and paper.

You should end up with something like this…

how to draw a floorplan

What you need

To make a floor plan sketch of your house, you will need:                     

  • A laser measure – We like this one by Leica.
  • Graph paper – This pad by Silvine is really good.
  • A pencil with rubber – Any will do, but these colourful Bic’s are great!

1. Start outside

Stand outside at the front of the property. Start your sketch towards the bottom corner of the paper – but leave some space in case there are any unexpected extensions or parts of the property that stick out.

The benefit of using graph paper to draw your own floor plan is that you can use each square as a unit of measurement. You could try walking the length of an external wall, counting your steps and then converting those steps to squares on the graph paper. This helps keep things roughly to scale. Or you could just do it by eye, depends on your skills.

Do this for all the walls for all floors until you have a rough ‘footprint’ of the building. Personally, I like to use a different page of graph paper per floor but you don’t have to.

2. Add external doors and windows

Whilst still outside, draw on the windows and doors. This really helps to identify where internal walls are when you head inside. Just a simple line for a window, and an arc for a door.

Don’t worry if these aren’t exactly in the right place, you’ll find out soon enough when you come to draw the internal walls. You may need to use that rubber soon.

3. Draw internal walls and doors

Head inside the front door and starting with the ground floor, head through doing your best to correctly sketch out the location of the walls. Whilst you’re at it, draw on any internal doors.

I guess this is personal preference, but you can either leave measuring the rooms with your laser measure until you have sketched all the walls or measure as you go along.

4. Measure

Start firing that laser. Place the bottom of your laser measure against a wall and aim it across to the other side of the room, make sure it is level and not angled up or down, then press the button to take the measurement. Write it clearly on the plan next to said wall.

A simple square room will just need two measurements. For more complex room shapes, best to take a measurement of each section of wall. As a rule of thumb, the more measurements the better.

A quick note on measurement units: We provide floor plans for real estate agents in both Metric and Imperial units, but you should be using meters and centimeters on your sketches.

5. Kitchens, bathrooms, stairs and other details

In the kitchen, draw a line or two to show the worktop location, and bang on roughly where the sink and hob is. Use your innate artistic abilities to do this in any illustrative style you like, but less is more here!

When it comes to heading upstairs, draw a few lines to show the position of the stairs. Measure the width of the stairs and not this on the plan as well.

In bathrooms and WC’s, sketch where any sinks, baths, showers and toilets are located.

Other things to include in your sketch could be cupboards in bedrooms, Velux rooflights, understairs cupboards, or anything else really – draw it, we can include it!

6. Label stuff

In your finest and most careful handwriting, make sure things are clearly identifiable.

Firstly, make sure each floor is named e.g. Ground floor, First floor, Basement etc. Then, in the center of each room, write the name of that room. And with bedrooms, identify them by number e.g. Bedroom 1, Bedroom 2 and so on. If your floor plan is spread over a few pages, number them.

Add any other notes you think will help us to correctly convert your sketch into a finished floor plan should be included as well.

Want to show the orientation? South facing gardens are good, so show this with a North arrow. Use a compass or an app to find the orientation, draw the North arrow in a corner somewhere and we’ll include it on the plan.

7. Send your Floor plan for Conversion

Once you’re happy with your sketch, send it to us for the Floor Plan Sketch Conversion treatment. With a simple drag and drop you can leave it with us to create a beautiful and bespoke floor plan for just £6.95 + VAT.

We can even customise the walls, room fill and text to any colours you like and include your logo. You’ll have the finished JPG version of your floor plans back in around 3 hours.

Sound good? Come check us out, enter BLOG28 for 3 free orders when creating an account 🙂

 

How-to-draw-a-floorplan-[Infographic]

3 reasons why you should be using floor plans in your property listings

Buyers love floor plans. They help listings stand out from the crowd. They can generate more enquiries, and convert those into viewings. They also help sell properties quicker. But many real estate agents don’t think they’re necessary. Why?

3 reasons why you should be using floor plans in your property listings

In a recent survey of property sellers, 80% of them said floor plans are essential or very useful when selling. A massive 88% agreed when it comes to buying a property.

Yes, a floor plan isn’t technically necessary to sell a property, but neither are photos or property descriptions. How many listings do you see without those? Floor plans are attention grabbing, and they help simplify a buyer’s decision-making. They’re every bit as important as great quality photos, and here’s three reasons why:

1. Floor plans help a buyer visualise the property better than photos alone

Research provided by Rightmove suggests over a third of buyers are less likely to enquire about a property if there’s no floor plan. 1 in 5 would actually ignore the listing completely.

Floor plans show buyers details that are difficult to get across with just photos and descriptions, such as storage space, windows, and measurements. They’re also better at displaying unique selling features like knock-throughs and extensions. That’s all information that could help a buyer decide if the property is right for them, or if it’s worth viewing at all.

Less wasted time

High-quality property photos are vital in showcasing a property in the best light. Wide angle shots score well with buyers, but some people feel they can be misleading when it comes to accurately portraying space.

You know those viewings where the buyer’s disappointed that the property isn’t what they thought from the photos? A floor plan helps avoid that by giving potential buyers and tenants a clearer visual of the entire property before they step through the door.

House-hunters can use a floor plan alongside photos to understand the layout and space of the house. They’ll see how rooms connect with each other, and how space flows throughout the property. That means no nasty surprises when they get there.

When it comes to successful property photos and viewings, all estate agents are at the mercy of the current occupiers. Cluttered, untidy rooms look smaller than they are. A clean floor plan shows the true size and potential of every room.

Mentally moving in

If a buyer can see themselves living in a property, half the estate agent’s job is done already.

Rightmove’s survey suggests that buyers want a floo rplan showing room layout, and how rooms fit in relation to the rest of the property. But what buyers rate most important in a floor plan is room dimensions.

Floor plans showing room measurements, window and door placements allow potential buyers to imagine where their own furniture will go, and how they would use the space. They may even start thinking about decorating, or how they would change the building to suit their needs.

Once they’ve started mentally planning the move, an emotional attachment to the property and a decision to buy isn’t too far off.

Floorplan - 6 Brinsley Close, Aspley

2. Floor plans make a property memorable later

Helping a buyer visualise a properties potential before and during a viewing is one thing, but what about after they’ve gone home? You might be getting great signals during the viewing, but when you follow it up with a call where they ask “which house was that?” it’s never a good sign.

Remember that house hunters are looking at many properties at once, and the features of each house can get mixed up when they’re seeing several each day. Including a floor plan in your listings and marketing materials help it stick in the mind.

Simply put, a visual of the layout and all its nuances makes the property you’re selling easier to remember.

Taking the stress out of viewing

A floor plan can also help in a buyer’s decision making after the viewing. Don’t forget that for some people viewing a property in a perceived time limit, and in the presence of an estate agent can be daunting, or even stressful.

Having a floor plan available to them means they can sit down, study and plan at their leisure later. Taking a closer look at measurements – or noticing parts of the property they overlooked – can help persuade a buyer into a second viewing where they might otherwise walk away.

Colour Floorplan - Corbin Coach

3. A professional floor plan makes you look more professional

If your competitors are using floor plans, so should you. But if it’s something they aren’t doing yet; floor plans can give you a market advantage.

A clear, well-designed floor plan will help put your listing to the top of the pile as a professional listing from a professional business. It adds to the quality of your brand, and shows property sellers looking for an estate agent you that you’re willing to invest in your business to keep up with current property trends.

Colour Floorplan - Orchard Close

Want some help creating floor plans?

At Elements, we can convert your hand drawn sketches into fully-realised, professional 2D floor plans in around 3 hours. All you need is paper, a pencil and a laser measure (a tape measure will suffice if you’re old-skool) to sketch out the rough plan and add the dimensions and send us the building blocks of a great floor plan.

For added brand customisation, add your logo and set your brand colour scheme to match the floor plan colours for the walls, fill area and text – we think that looks really cool!

Your finished floor plan will be returned in double-quick time as a high-quality JPEG, which you can use for your own website listings, marketing materials, and easily upload to Rightmove and Zoopla listings.

To wrap up, having a floor plan in your listing makes sense for you, the buyer, and the seller:

  • You’ll attract better informed buyers to sell the property quicker.
  • Buyers are more informed on the property.
  • Sellers gets added value to the professional service you provide.

It’s a win-win-win.

Before you go, we’d love you to check out our Floor Plan Sketch Conversion service for FREE so here’s a promocode for you, enter BLOG26 when creating an account 🙂

LEARN MORE ABOUT FLOORPLANS

 

 

Convert your sketches into floor plans

We can quickly and cost-effectively convert your floor plan sketches into nice 2D floor plans.

There are tons of services and apps out there that can make floor plans for estate agents. But if you’re like me, then you’ll agree that nothing beats sketching out the layout of the property with a good old fashioned pencil and paper with the help of a laser measure, this is especially true if you’re a DEA producing EPCs for your estate agent clients. With a little extra detail, your sketch of the property for the EPC can be sent to us to produce a floor plan.

The only issue with the pencil and paper method is the time and extra processing it takes to convert into a finished floor plan. Now we can help with that! We use AutoCAD to convert sketches of property layouts into digital floor plans in pretty much any file type you need.

Save time

We help estate agents, DEA’s and property photographers all over the country to quickly convert the sketch plans they send us into a finished floor plan. We aim to do this in around 3 hours (give or take) so the floor plan can be added to the property listing in super quick time.

Save money

If you work with us already for any of our other service like Image Enhancement, you’ll know we like to keep things low cost and simple. That’s why for floor plan conversion we offer one low price for the vast majority of property types, everything up to and including 6 bedroom 3 storey houses – we turn sketch plans into floor plans for just £6.95.

Choose what to show on your plans

Easily set up what info you’d like to be shown on your plans, as default we show everything including the gross internal approximate floor areas (in sq ft and sq m), the individual room dimensions, and the room names. The choice is yours though, select exactly what to show and what to leave out. If you draw a north arrow showing the orientation of the property, then we’ll include that as well. For anything else, just let us know and we’ll see what we can do!

Custom disclaimers

That legal bit at the bottom of the plan that warns people that the plan “may not be an exact representation” etc can be customised to whatever text you like, or you’re welcome to use our default disclaimer if that works for you.

Branding & custom colours

I’ll tell you what looks awesome… matching the colour of your floor plans to your brand colours. We’ll we have just the thing to facilitate that. Choose the colours for the walls, room fill and text to create a bespoke colour scheme just to your liking and ensure your brand consistency is on point!

If you’re a property pro like a DEA producing plans for your clients then you can set up all your clients custom info to be shown and brand colours just one time and we’ll remember their preferences each time you send us a plan for them, simply choose which client it’s for on the upload page.

Email us your sketch from the property

Don’t want to waste a second getting your sketch to us? Whilst you’re still at the property, take a snap of your floor plan sketch on your phone just as soon as you finish it and email it over to orders@elementsproperty.co.uk and we’ll get to work on it right away! It may even be ready and waiting for you by the time you get back to the office.

Just write on the sketch the following:

  • Your User ID (find this in My Account > My Details)
  • The property address at the top of the plan (if you want to show it)
  • A property reference
  • For DEA’s tell us which client it’s for and we’ll apply their custom settings

 

6 Brinsley copy

 

Want some free floor plans?

If you’re new to Elements and what we do, set up an account using the promocode BLOG24 and you’ll have 3 FREE orders to see what we’re all about. Send us some sketches to convert or images to enhance and we’ll work out magic and have the finished files back with you in lightning quick time!

LEARN MORE ABOUT FLOORPLANS