The Sims 4 Building Tutorials:

Using Building Cheats to Enhance a Project

by Norma Blackburn

Sims 4 Building How-To's: enhancing builds with build mode cheats

There are a few cheats we can use while building in Sims 4. Usually very easy to use, they can enhance our builds and can help to make them look more realistic.

To use cheats, first you need to open the cheats console by pressing Control + Shift + C. Type the cheat in and press enter. To close the console, press Control + Shift + C again.

The Sims 4 Building Cheats for PC, Xbox and PS4

A Guide to using The Sims 4's building cheats, which includes controls that are easy to miss that let you resize objects and fine tune placement. Features the new live mode edit objects that were patched into the game in July 2019.

The Sims 4 Video

Move Objects Cheat

Possibly one of the most used cheats in building. To activate type bb.moveobjects on and retype to turn the cheat off. With this on, you will be able to place items in places that the game would not normally allow. You can place things closer together or even touching. With this cheat, you could combine two pieces of furniture to make one larger pieces, for example, two Unabashed Sofas at right angles to each other make a nice corner lounge. Join tables together to make larger tables. Be aware though, that combining items can affect your sim's ability to use part or all of the item or can cause strange visuals when they do use it. It's a good idea to test objects placed with this cheat, especially if you intend to share the build.

Sims 4 Building How-To's: moveobjects cheat
Click to Enlarge. Use the moveobjects cheat to combine furniture

The move object cheat does have some limitations. While it will allow two windows to be placed on one section of wall, it will cause some strange visuals. Sometimes too, the game will not acknowledge that an item is placed in an unusual place and again, some strange visuals could result when a Sim uses that item.

Sims 4 Building How-To's: game doesn't recognize when something is placed using a cheat
Click to Enlarge. The game doesn't always recognise when something is placed using a cheat

While the move objects cheat is activated, we can also adjust the height at which something sits. Pick up the item and press the 9 key, every time you press the key, the item will be raised a little. When it's at the desired height, release it and it will stay at that height. To lower something use the 0 key instead. This is useful for placing things on surfaces that the game would not normally allow.

Sims 4 Building How-To's: make cosmetic bunk beds
Click to Enlarge. Use moveobjects cheat and raise a second bed to make a set of bunks - unfortunately, they can't be used

Show Hidden Objects

Another well used cheat in building, this one allows us to use items that we normally can't buy. To activate, type bb.showhiddenobjects into the cheat console. For now, there seems to be no way to turn this cheat off other than exiting the game, so be aware, especially if you are playing a competition game where cheats are not allowed.

This cheat lets us select many items that we cannot usually buy, from full grown fruit trees to the little things our Sims use in everyday activities. Included in the hidden objects are lights. The hidden lights are particularly useful as they can make a room lighter without adding more conventional lights.

Sims 4 Building How-To's: Add extra lights with hidden lights
Click to Enlarge. Use hidden lights to add extra light to a room




Enlarging an item

Not really a cheat, the enlarging feature is still useful when decorating a house. In Build mode, pick up an item and press the ] key and the item will be enlarged a little. With each key stroke, the item will be made slightly bigger. While items can be made larger, they cannot be made smaller than the original size. To reduce the size of something that has been enlarged, hit the [ key until the required size is reached. While most items can be made bigger, a few do not enlarge well. While window and door frames will enlarge, the hole in the wall will remain the original size. Likewise mirrors do not enlarge well.

Sims 4 Building How-To's: plants enlarge well, other objects do not
Click to Enlarge. Some things like plants enlarge well - others like windows and mirrors do not

Free Placement and Rotation of Objects

Another trick that is not really a cheat is free placement and rotation of objects. Normally when you place an item, it will be locked to the grid. Pick up an item and go to place it somewhere. You will see it has a footprint. This footprint shows how many grid squares the item will need and when you place it the footprint will automatically lock to the grid on the floor.

By holding the ALT key when you place something, the grid will be ignored and you will be free to place it anywhere. Things moved this way will still have the footprint that says how many squares of floor space is needed. Unless you also use the moveobjects cheat, items cannot share the same space. Combining the moveobjects cheat and holding the ALT key will give more placement options.

Sims 4 Building How-To's: stop grid snap when making a lot
Click to Enlarge. Normally, objects snap to the grid. By holding the alt key they can be placed anywhere

Free rotation is similar to free placement in that we are not restricted in how we rotate an item. This trick is dependent on you using the Sims 3 camera mode. To switch into Sims 3 camera mode, select the Options menu in the top right hand corner of the screen. From there select Game Options and then Controls & Camera. Check the box that says The Sims 3 Camera. Apply the change and return to the game. Alternately, you can switch between the Sims 3 camera and the Sims 4 camera by holding CTRL + Shift + tab. With the Sims 3 camera, you will be able to rotate an item you are holding simply by dragging it instead of having to use the < or > keys. Rotating something this way, you will still be restricted to 45 degree rotations but by holding the ALT key as you drag, you will be able to rotate an item freely.

Sims 4 Building How-To's: hold alt and use the sims 3 camera mode to freely rotate objects.
Click to Enlarge. By holding the alt key and using the Sims 3 camera mode, we can freely rotate objects

Sharing houses and rooms built with cheats
If you share a house or room you have built using some or all of the cheats, there are a few things to consider. Not all things placed with the showhiddenobjects cheat will transfer through the gallery, some are just not designed that way. The invisible lights will only transfer if you save and share an entire lot. If you only share a room, hidden lights will not be included. Objects placed using the moveobjects cheat may transfer correctly, but there is a chance that they will not. Items transferring could also depend on individual games being up to date. In earlier versions of the game, some items did not transfer through the gallery the way they were intended to by the builder.

Other Building Guides

Sims 4 House Building
Building Cheats
Counters and Islands
Decorating Inside Homes
Decorating Outside/Landscaping
Island Living (Stilt Foundation, Glass Floors)
Roofs
Split Levels and Lofts
Stairs and Basements
Terrain Tools


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Comments (91)

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New
Narcolepzzzysays...
Is there a way to have different foundation heights on two seperate buildings on one lot?
And is there still a way to make a 2 or 4 piece stairs like in the Sims 3? I have some places that i dont want to put in just the long stairs
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Admin
Playlotsays...
All foundations have to be the same height in TS4. You can do clever 'tricks' with different floors/basements and placing rocks with the move objects cheat to make it look like a house has different height foundations but nothing other than that. And no, to the stairs... they have to be placed in one long run. These limitations to the build mode can be quite frustrating but there is no way around them sadly.
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New
Renlishsays...
FYI - You can now make items smaller! This has been the case for a little while now. "Shift + [ " will make things smaller, but be warned, it still uses the same footprint as the original size. Great for when you want to place those giant urns as decorations on mantels. :)
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Regular
Alexsays...
Hey, I'm on a mac and I don't have an alt key. Is there any way I can still move objects off the grid? I also already tried to go into system preferences and change keyboard shortcuts, but there was nothing there for sims 4.
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Admin
Playlotsays...
Would it be the Command key instead?
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New
Azur Roquessays...
I cannot enlarge objects or decrease them in size... I don't have the [ ] touch directly since I use Apple, is it why I can't do it ?
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Admin
Playlotsays...
The [ ] keys are in the same place on an Apple desktop or laptop: it's the next two keys after the 'p' button. But if for some reason you can't use these two keys..then yes, they are needed for this cheat.
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New
Zukurysays...
How do you make the free build to work?
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Admin
Playlotsays...
The cheat is: bb.enablefreebuild
Carl has a video guide on how to use cheats: Guide to Using Cheats -Video (click) It's only 1.30sec so gets straight to the point.
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New
hirasays...
thank you soooo much for the free rotate info!!! i was looking all over the intewebssssss!!!
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New
Rileysays...
I play on ps4 but I think I mite try it!??? I could work but I have a recwest you guys should make Cheats for the ps4, Xbox and other's. I want to know how to go into Creative mode
Thxs you guys are the BEST!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!Smile
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Admin
Playalotsays...
Here's all the info you need for console: Tips and Information for Console Players. Specifically How to Use Cheats On Console
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New
Ruth Craigsays...
I have resolved my foundation problem on my own. There is now a raise and lower arrow included when placing a room. I had not realized it had changed.
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Admin
Playalotsays...
This was changed in the terrain tool manipulation patch. Take a look at this guide page and as you scroll down the page you'll see the portion towards the bottom that directly informs you about the new way foundations are made: Terrain Tools
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New
P ksays...

Understand I like watching video

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New
Eviesays...

How do you enlarge an item if u are using and Xbox 1s

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Admin
Playalotsays...

To resize an object first you need to enter Build Mode. Then, select an object you want to resize and press L2 + R2 (PS4) / LT + RT (Xbox One) and use your D-pad (up and down buttons) to make objects bigger or smaller.

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New
ForkySporkysays...

is there a way to reenable entitlement locks? For story purposes I unlocked something, but I still want to work for everything, so I want to relock it all

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Admin
Playalotsays...

Save your game and quit. When you reload the game that particular cheat will be again reset and inactive.

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New
Lillium1225says...

I have a question, is it possible to have no flooring under a staircase? My staircase keeps disappearing no matter what I try to get no flooring..

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Admin
Playalotsays...

You have to have the floor for the landing so that the end stair has something to sit on, but you can stack stairs under/above each other. When you stack stairs the game auto removes the unneeded tiles so the stairs can descend/ascend but I am not sure of you can do that manually.

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New
Brandysays...

I cannot find anything online about how to TILT an object while placing it in the sims 4. Everything I pull up on it is just explaining the normal object rotation guides and such. I have never seen anyone build like this. I downloaded this lot from the gallery.

UploadUploadUpload
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Admin
Playalotsays...

Person probably used the T.O.O.L mod. https://www.patreon.com/posts/t-o-o-l-public-28887948

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New
Katie Edmondssays...

you can disable the debug mode just type in bb.showhiddenobjects again when you want to turn it off

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New
Lisasays...

Hey, I've been using that code for the past week and it has been working fine until 3 days ago. The code works, but when I press ALT the free placement doesn't work anymore.

Here are all the things I've tried:

-Remove all mods/scripts.

-Put my "Sims 4" folder on my Desktop and start a new save.

-Download MOO (same issue, ALT doesn't work).

-Check that my keyboard works fine (it does).

-Change my camera to sims 3.

I'm running out of solution and furnishing without free placement is so sad...

Please, tell me you have a solution :)

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Admin
Playalotsays...

I'm not sure what to suggest at all as free placement with the Alt key is still functioning as normal for me in my game. Also not sure what 'code' you are referring to? Is it the 'testingcheats on' cheat you mean? Maybe you are trying to place items that simply don't 'free place'?

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New
Lisasays...

I know this is very annoying because it was working fine 4 days ago.

The code is "bb.moveobjects", I know it works because I can still place objects in between walls and up and down. It's just the "alt" function that doesn't work.

Thank you for trying at least, I guess I'm doomed to follow the grids ^^

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Admin
Playalotsays...

Maybe try the cheat 'disableSnappingToSlotsOnAlt'

I'm not sure if this cheat still functions at my Alt key is already working but it might solve your issue.

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New
Asays...

I think I found a way to turn off hidden objects?

bb.showhiddenobjects false

Admin:

Yes, that is the easiest way to turn the cheat off.



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