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Renovation dictionary

All the terminology you’ll need to make sure you look like a pro when redoing your house.

Art deco Bold geometric style of architecture and interior design popular from 1925 to 1940.

Bearer Sub-floor timber that supports floor joists.

Builder's warranty Compulsory insurance for builders that protects you from faulty work.

Cladding A layer of metal, brick, timber or cement that protects the structural elements of a building.

Cornice Molding at the top of the walls of a room used to join it to the ceiling.

Covenant A binding agreement that states the structure must conform to specific standards.

Defect liability Period of time indicated in the contract in which the builder has to rectify defects.

Eaves Overhang at the edge of the roof that projects over the wall.

Fascia A sheet or band running horizontally along ends of the roof rafters between moldings.

Flashing Sheet metal that protects the walls and roof from moisture.

Gable Triangular section of wall sitting between the ends of a sloping roof.

Grout Thin mortar used to fill the joints and cravices found between tiles or masonry.

Hardwood Wood harvested from broadleaf trees (eg. oaks, maples), unlike softwood (pine, fir).

Joist Wood, steel or concrete beams providing the main structural support for a ceiling or floor.

Lintel Horizontal structural member supporting the load over a door or window.

Louvre (or louver) Parallel slat in a window or door that allows air and light to enter but keeps rain out.

Practical completion Stage when building works are completed in accordance with the contract.

Render Cement or plaster coating applied to brick or masonry walls .

Specifications Detailed description of work to be undertaken and materials to be used in a renovation.

Truss Rigid structural support (usually in a triangular shape) for roofs and floors.

Veneer Thin layer of high-quality wood glued on top of inferior wood for aesthetic purposes.

Are you an expert renovator? Share your favourite building terminology here!