After decades of developing software for the lumber and building materials markets, Luxwood Software Tools has brought to market deck building software for the individual contractor. And a recently formed strategic partnership with CADSoft means you’ll be able to design a whole house including yard, deck, and landscaping.
There are two versions that remodelers who build decks will find worthwhile. The first is a design-only package. Bring a tablet PC to a client meeting and you can design on the spot — take a picture of the home, create the deck, place it on the house, and show it off immediately, or print out a photorealistic three-dimensional PDF.
Upgrade to the business version and you get the design capability as well as a whole back-end of information such as a bill of materials — everything from railings and planking to the amount of concrete or number of screws you will need; all the drawings you’d need for permits; a database of parts and pricing, which is billed from a point-of-sales system or from your own product list in QuickBooks or Microsoft Excel; engineering details; and the ability to design using multiple manufacturer catalogs. The software will export a quote that you can send to or show a customer immediately. It can also factor in local building code information (that you’ve input) and give you a stress analysis.
Both versions connect to a suite of other Luxwood software that includes patio and in-ground pool design. The design-only version is $295; upgrade to the business version for an additional $800 (or start out with the business version for $1,095). Visit www.luxwood2.com, for more information.
—Stacey Freed, senior editor, REMODELING.