Artificial Intelligence in the Home Industry

Kirsten Erickson of Alma Homes shares her company’s initial foray into AI technologies

AI-generated designs by Alma Homes  

MH: What prompted you to start using AI? How, specifically, are you currently using it in your daily work?

KE: We love embracing new technology, so we were excited to learn how to use some of the different AI tools. I’ll be the first to admit we are just scratching the surface on learning what AI is capable of. The technology seems to be evolving incredibly quickly. We have been using AI predominantly for inspiration, sharing the images we create on social media.

What are the advantages and disadvantages of using AI in home design?

We’re able to quickly and easily bring our design ideas to life, [but] there are definitely limitations. The AI tools we use are not actual rendering software, so you can’t model a client’s specific home. We rely strictly on prompts to create images, so it would be very challenging to re-create their home with the current tools we’re using. AI also has the habit of putting objects in strange spots, and when you look closely, things don’t always make sense. Because of that, we haven’t been using it too much with clients on their projects.

We have mainly been using it to create different design concepts. It has been fun to be able to showcase different ideas we have on social media, because traditionally, we’ve been restricted to only sharing actual client work where clients ultimately have the final say.

How will AI enable you to potentially create more customized or personalized design solutions?

As our team becomes more familiar with the AI tools out there, I could see us incorporating them into design meetings as a way to better articulate ideas we have. Often during selection meetings, we are swapping out materials quickly, and clients want to be able to see how it would look in a room. With a few quick prompts, we can create images that may not show the exact product but give a general sense of how something like that would look in a room. 

Where do you see the future of AI in home design heading?

As AI capabilities continue to evolve, the possibilities will be endless when it comes to home design. Being able to automate some of the tedious tasks of plan detailing would be incredible, as would being able to take any floor plan and having it quickly create a rendering.

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