Chief Architect

Chief Architect


4.5 / 5
29 reviews

Who Uses This Software?

Chief Architect software is designed for professionals, designers, architects, and remodelers. And Home Designer software is designed for the consumer DIY home design market.


Average Ratings

29 Reviews

  • 4.5 / 5
    Overall

  • 4 / 5
    Ease of Use

  • 4.5 / 5
    Customer Service

Product Details

  • Starting Price
    $199.00/month/user
  • Pricing Details
    Product includes 1 year of support and software assurance
  • Free Trial
    Yes
  • Deployment
    Installed - Mac
    Installed - Windows
    Mobile - Android Native
    Mobile - iOS Native
  • Training
    Documentation
    Webinars
    Live Online
    In Person
  • Support
    Online
    Business Hours

Vendor Details

  • Chief Architect
  • www.chiefarchitect.com/
  • Founded 1992
  • United States

About Chief Architect

Chief Architect Software is a leading developer and publisher of 3D Architectural home design software for builders, designers, architects and home DIY enthusiasts. For professionals, we publish the Chief Architect software product line; the most popular product for residential home design. And, for the consumer DIY home design market, we publish the top-selling and best-rated Home Designer product line.


Chief Architect Features

  • 2D Drawing
  • Animation
  • Annotations
  • BIM Modeling
  • Component Library
  • Data Import / Export
  • Landscape Design
  • Virtual Tour
  • 2D Drawing
  • 3D Modeling
  • Architectural Symbol Library
  • Automatic Formatting
  • BIM Modeling
  • Comparison View
  • Design Templates
  • Drafting
  • 2D Drawing
  • 3D Modeling
  • Bills of material
  • Building Information Modeling
  • Contact Management
  • Contract Management
  • Document Management
  • Drafting
  • Presentation Tools
  • Project Management
  • Quotes/Proposals

Chief Architect Reviews Recently Reviewed!


poor software

Mar 24, 2017
3/5
Overall

1 / 5
Ease of Use

1 / 5
Features & Functionality

1 / 5
Customer Support

1 / 5
Value for Money

Comments: I purchased an updated version chief architect X6. I have used previous versions for years on a PC and was assured it would run great on a Mac. I downloaded the software to my Mac which was running the minimum system requirements (Mavericks) listed on the chief architect website. I had issues with this software working from the start, i.e. when I would open or try to edit a dialog box it would open a new window behind all previous open windows. Since this computer was a few years old I mistakenly thought it was an issue with my computer. I purchased a new Mac to run the software and ran into the same issues as before. I put up with these problems for more than a year before I contacted chief architect looking for a fix for their software. I was informed by a chief architect tech that this was a known issue that their software developers were aware of and had fixed in later versions and that the only solution to this issue was to upgrade the software. After being transferred to a sales associate I was informed that I would have to pay over money to chief architect to get a version of the software that would work. I told him that I have already purchased software from chief architect and that they need to fix the issue with the version I have or they should stand behind their product and upgrade it for free. I made a complaint with the senior supervisor/manager who informed me that since they could not re-create the issue in house and that I am now currently using an updated Mac with the (Sierra) operating system they would not stand behind there software. Under system requirements for X6 it lists that you need a minimum operating system of (Mountain Lion / Mavericks) nowhere does it say if you have a newer operating system that their software will not work. I would like to see chief architect stand behind the product I've spent thousands of dollars on. So far this has been one of the worst customer experiences I've ever had and I definitely feel I have been ripped off by chief architect.

Not this time, Chief Architect guys

May 10, 2018
2/5
Overall

2 / 5
Ease of Use

3 / 5
Features & Functionality

5 / 5
Customer Support

2 / 5
Value for Money
Likelihood to Recommend: 3.0/10 Not
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Pros: Great for technical users who want at once have 3D view. Easy way to draw simply to very complex arch. details.

Cons: Not this time. Products from 2017/2018 stinks... Support is doing great job with this. Software is not following after new graph. cards drivers. No compatibility with windows 10 updates. Causing so many problems...after 10 years of using ChA products, I try something else. By, by Chief!

Overall: None

Capterra loader

Great Quality and Value

Sep 24, 2018
5/5
Overall

5 / 5
Ease of Use

5 / 5
Features & Functionality

5 / 5
Customer Support

5 / 5
Value for Money
Likelihood to Recommend: 10.0/10 Not
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Pros: This software is easy to use easy to learn. You don't have to attend their classes because they have a great library of videos to help with the learning curve. They also have a great community of people working to help you solve problems. They respond quickly and are always helpful.

Cons: Nothing to dislike for me! This is great software for anyone wanting to get into this kind of design.

Overall: They have a great customer support. They have helped me on multiple occasions. I have the SSA package and it is well worth the value. Must have they will solve any issue you have.

Architectural Designer

Feb 16, 2018
5/5
Overall

5 / 5
Ease of Use

5 / 5
Features & Functionality

5 / 5
Customer Support

5 / 5
Value for Money
Likelihood to Recommend: 10.0/10 Not
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Pros: Ease of learning and teaching, Fast plan creation, 3d rendering capabilities, Blocks, Symbols, All of it

Cons: Should be the industry standard above AutoCad, Priced a little on the high side, Materials takeoff is inaccurate and Import export

Overall: I get the benefit of being able to generate a working drawing in short time compared to any other Cadd software as well as creating 3d visuals to aide in comprehension of design

Steep learning curve, but the results are amazing

May 11, 2018
5/5
Overall

3 / 5
Ease of Use

5 / 5
Features & Functionality

5 / 5
Customer Support

5 / 5
Value for Money
Likelihood to Recommend: 10.0/10 Not
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Pros: The wide range of textures, furnishings and finishes available, and the 3d walk through. Also allows for input of land features for full landscaping finish to product drawings.

Cons: Steep learning curve especially in the Plan Layout stages of finishing. Also the roofing tool takes a lot of practice to get the fancy roofing structures just right,

Overall: Drew and submitted my own home plan and got it approved first try! The spacial orientation of furniture in the drawing also greatly assisted in getting the rooms just right as well as arranging electrical and water systems accurately. The software also allows for an estimate of all materials and fittings necessary to bring your plan to reality.

Chief Architect has quickly made creating models and layouts easier than ever before for us.

Jun 05, 2018
5/5
Overall

5 / 5
Ease of Use

5 / 5
Features & Functionality

5 / 5
Customer Support

5 / 5
Value for Money

Pros: There are many features to take advantage of almost immediately. They make many of our common tasks such as floor-planning, creating shells, and dimensioning quick and easy.

Cons: With so many features, we were worried training materials would be hard to come by for our staff. On the contrary, it was extremely easy reaching customer support and training was a breeze.

Capterra loader

Excellent program, very user friendly, great support

Apr 04, 2018
5/5
Overall

5 / 5
Ease of Use

5 / 5
Features & Functionality

5 / 5
Customer Support

5 / 5
Value for Money
Likelihood to Recommend: 10.0/10 Not
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Pros: Chief Architect is a very powerful tool for creating plans and layouts for buildings. It is very easy to pickup and there is a number of official tutorials both on their website and YouTube that cover virtually everything the program has to offer. You can make as much or as little as you need in this program.

Cons: Some automatically generated walls and roofs come in incorrectly and can be very difficult to edit and manipulate. Often times there are work-arounds that suffice, but it can be overly cumbersome to edit.

Amazing tool!

Oct 17, 2018
5/5
Overall

5 / 5
Ease of Use

5 / 5
Features & Functionality

4 / 5
Customer Support

5 / 5
Value for Money
Likelihood to Recommend: 10.0/10 Not
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Pros: Once you learn how to use it, you can "build" anything and decorate it,

Cons: The learning curve is steep to begin with, but stick it out. It is an amazing tool to help your clients see your vision.

High productivity for not so high a price

Dec 14, 2017
4/5
Overall

4 / 5
Ease of Use

4 / 5
Features & Functionality

5 / 5
Customer Support

5 / 5
Value for Money
Likelihood to Recommend: 8.0/10 Not
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Pros: I like that the system is automated enough to allow you to design and render the building without having to worry about every little detail of how to draw every little line or manually setting every light and texture for rendering, but flexible enough to allow a wide variety of building styles.

Cons: It's not the industry standard, so unless you are the company owner or principal architect, don't expect to enter the job market as a proficient Chief user. This stuff is mostly used by one and two man shops who can't afford to hire. Most hiring is temporary and/or freelance, and that market is quite competitive.

Overall: This software allowed me to obtain skill in its use through it's "grow up" scale, starting from early home versions working up to the top line business version. It allows the creation of a rendering fairly easily, at a reasonable if not top-notch quality, which provides quite a bit of bang for the buck.

Capterra loader

This is a very good software for architecture or home design. It has helped me in several projects

Oct 17, 2017
5/5
Overall

4 / 5
Ease of Use

5 / 5
Features & Functionality

5 / 5
Customer Support

4 / 5
Value for Money
Likelihood to Recommend: 10.0/10 Not
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Pros: I'm a small business of property management and short-rental, I use the Home Suite version for my projects when preparing new properties. It's a very complete and versatile product. It helps to redesign the space you have in several version and choose the best of it.

Cons: It's not a very user friendly tool and for the version I use, I think the catalog could be better.

Overall: Very useful for my property management business

Premier software for residential home design

Feb 19, 2018
5/5
Overall

5 / 5
Ease of Use

5 / 5
Features & Functionality

5 / 5
Customer Support

5 / 5
Value for Money
Likelihood to Recommend: 9.0/10 Not
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Pros: We've been wowing our customers for years thanks to Chief Architect. We love how they keep improving the software every year.

Cons: They RayTrace rendering takes a bit to get a crisp rendering. Might need to upgrade the speed on my computer though.

Overall: Increased sales from a great presentation.

Best Design Software Out There!!

Nov 09, 2018
5/5
Overall

5 / 5
Ease of Use

5 / 5
Features & Functionality

5 / 5
Customer Support

4 / 5
Value for Money
Likelihood to Recommend: 10.0/10 Not
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Pros: Rendering capabilities far exceed any other design software I've ever used. Very user-friendly and easy to use.

Cons: Would love for Chief to implement a cabinet quoting feature (similar to 2020 or ProKitchen) that would make it easier to order cabinetry designed in Chief.

Amazing

Sep 19, 2018
5/5
Overall

4 / 5
Ease of Use

5 / 5
Features & Functionality

5 / 5
Value for Money
Likelihood to Recommend: 10.0/10 Not
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Pros: Easy to navigate. Easy to connect with.

Cons: Some features have a tendency to be slow.

Overall: Amazing interface. Increasingly easy to use.

Best I've tried

Aug 21, 2016
5/5
Overall

5 / 5
Ease of Use

5 / 5
Features & Functionality

5 / 5
Customer Support

5 / 5
Value for Money
Likelihood to Recommend: 10.0/10 Not
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Comments: I have tried a lot of other design programs but keep coming back to Chief , I have found it to be the best overall.

Vendor Response

by Chief Architect on August 22, 2016

Thanks Fred! We're so glad to be a part of your design process.

Easy program to use

Sep 05, 2017
5/5
Overall

5 / 5
Ease of Use

5 / 5
Features & Functionality

5 / 5
Customer Support

5 / 5
Value for Money

Pros: This is a great program, even for users that are beginners (like myself). They have great tutorials and the program is very inexpensive.

Cons: There is not much bad to say about it, you do have to buy additional modules if you want to do more; however, overall this is a great piece of software.

Vendor Response

by Chief Architect on September 06, 2017

Thank you, Riccardo!

Capterra loader

Beautiful Renderings

Nov 02, 2018
5/5
Overall

5 / 5
Ease of Use

5 / 5
Features & Functionality
Likelihood to Recommend: 8.0/10 Not
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Pros: This software is perfect for kitchen and bath remodel designs.

Cons: Some things are complicated, such as putting a cut out in the wall or getting a good camera angle in a small space.

Overall: This software is easy to use and the render quality is superb. It definitely helps me sell a design.

Chief Architect for non-architects

Nov 09, 2018
5/5
Overall

3 / 5
Ease of Use

4 / 5
Features & Functionality

4 / 5
Customer Support

4 / 5
Value for Money
Likelihood to Recommend: 7.0/10 Not
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Pros: You can do accurate space planning and quickly convert that to 2d and 3d images without having to put in a ton of information. It can be very detailed if you want it, but is not necessary like some other CAD programs.

Cons: This program can be difficult to get started with because the features and tools are very foreign if you have no formal training. However the training videos are very helpful and you can get basic designs done pretty quickly.

Capterra loader

Using for Interior Design/Architecture

Sep 07, 2018
5/5
Overall

5 / 5
Ease of Use

4 / 5
Features & Functionality

5 / 5
Value for Money
Likelihood to Recommend: 10.0/10 Not
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Pros: The 3D option! After putting together your space, you can view a frame in 3D and see how your space would look down to the finishes!

Cons: Small selection of free catalogs. Not a huge variety of items to choose from right away, have to either pay or deal with the basic selections in the catalogs.

Overall: My favorite program to use in school compared to Sketchup and AutoCAD.

Great tool for professional arthitects

Apr 03, 2018
5/5
Overall

5 / 5
Ease of Use

5 / 5
Features & Functionality

5 / 5
Customer Support

5 / 5
Value for Money

Pros: My friends in the the field of architect have been using this and I see it working very well for them . Have used it myself too for sometime. A great tool , easy to use and affordable.

Cons: It covers most of features and modules required by an architect. Nothing which I did not like in this .

Chief Architect use

Feb 24, 2017
5/5
Overall

5 / 5
Ease of Use

5 / 5
Features & Functionality

5 / 5
Customer Support

5 / 5
Value for Money
Likelihood to Recommend: 10.0/10 Not
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Pros: Ease of use builder friendly

Cons: You have to train

Overall: Small construction business values Chief Architect everyday. Great software for everyday simple easy to use.

Vendor Response

by Chief Architect on February 24, 2017

Thank you Ray!

A great tool for architects

Apr 07, 2018
5/5
Overall

5 / 5
Ease of Use

5 / 5
Features & Functionality

5 / 5
Customer Support

5 / 5
Value for Money

Pros: This tool is perfectly designed to help the architects of today . An easy and convenient tool with a a affordable pricing.

The only software for custom home design

Dec 24, 2016
5/5
Overall

5 / 5
Ease of Use

5 / 5
Features & Functionality

5 / 5
Customer Support

5 / 5
Value for Money

Comments: I've used Chief for the last 10 years. It's the only program I know for designing clear and concise building plans that show the clients in vivid 3d, what the finish product will look like. All to often clients use terms and descriptions that don't convey to the plans. Chief shows them what they are getting for a complete understanding before a shovel hits the ground.

Vendor Response

by Chief Architect on December 27, 2016

Thank you for your loyalty with us, Charlie!

Pretty Good for Personal Use to view my home

May 04, 2018
3/5
Overall

3 / 5
Ease of Use

3 / 5
Features & Functionality

3 / 5
Customer Support

3 / 5
Value for Money
Likelihood to Recommend: 5.0/10 Not
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Pros: Downloaded this to do 3d walkthrough of house prior to construction. it was great for that and allowed my wife to understand what things would look like.

Cons: You need a pretty good computer to run this. it'd be nice to have a light version that runs a bit faster

Good for professionals

Jul 01, 2018
4/5
Overall

4 / 5
Ease of Use

4 / 5
Features & Functionality

3 / 5
Customer Support

3 / 5
Value for Money

Pros: This software is most suitable for big projects and it is quite easy to use . It is quite easy to use too

Cons: Once in a while there are few problems with the font and printing option and it is kinda expensive too

Not for professionals - at all!

Apr 30, 2018
1/5
Overall

1 / 5
Ease of Use

1 / 5
Features & Functionality

1 / 5
Customer Support

1 / 5
Value for Money

Pros: I like very little about this software package. It says it is for professional architects and they even show reviews by some they claim are architects, but I can't imagine doing anything beyond simple residential projects with this package. Unless you are a novice, don't bother.

Cons: This package does not deliver anything near what it promises. OK for a Do yourself a favor, keep looking.

Had software 30 minutes and I knew it was a mistake, tried cancel immediately

Apr 18, 2018
1/5
Overall

1 / 5
Ease of Use

1 / 5
Features & Functionality

1 / 5
Value for Money

Cons: extremely Limited, non intuitive, Bought this based on a review site as an upgrade from two previous programs and to say the least it was a misleading experience and NON REFUNDABLE

Overall: to research better

Vendor Response

by Chief Architect on April 19, 2018

Thank you for your feedback. We're sorry to hear about your experience. The software comes with a 30-day money back guarantee. Please give us a call at 208-292-3400 if we can assist you in any way.

Capterra loader

Awesome product and interesting competitor for software that costs thousands.

Nov 09, 2017
5/5
Overall

5 / 5
Ease of Use

5 / 5
Features & Functionality

5 / 5
Customer Support

5 / 5
Value for Money
Likelihood to Recommend: 10.0/10 Not
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Pros: Awesome product and interesting competitor for software that costs thousands of dollars. I use it when Datacenters will be moved to new locations and waiting for floorplans it's impossible. The results are stunning.

Overall: It adds an extra touch to my proposals. IT managers appreciate it when I include a rendering of the server location.

Best Software for Residential Design.

Feb 16, 2016
5/5
Overall

4 / 5
Ease of Use

5 / 5
Customer Support

Comments: After researching over a year. I know I made the right choice. Chief Architect just keeps getting better and better. 3D is great.

Vendor Response

by Chief Architect on February 16, 2016

Thanks Edgar!

Chief Architect is professional 3D design software for all constructions

Mar 31, 2018
5/5
Overall

5 / 5
Ease of Use

5 / 5
Features & Functionality

Pros: Chief architect is user friendly 3D software to designe any interior and it has great quality of the renderings image.

Cons: Not have mush least but isn't another program out there that can coordinate the nature of Chief architect.