Custom Home Dictionary

Building a new home can be confusing if you are unfamiliar with the terms used in the construction industry. Builders, agents, and workers alike use a unique language and vocabulary that is not commonly used by the everyday individual. That is why Dreamcraft has put together a “custom home dictionary” with frequently used words to help you better understand the everyday dialogue used during the process of building your dream home.

Aggregate: a type of material used in the foundation of a home that is made up of crushed stone and/or sand. It is most often found in concrete.

Areaway: a sunken area that gives access, light, and air to a basement.

Backfill: filling in the holes and/or trenches left behind from excavation, typically around the foundation of a home.

Build in Reverse: when an existing plan needs to be flipped due to customer desire or structure of lot. For example, the garage was originally planned to be on the left size of the house but will be flipped to the right size of the home when “building in reverse”.

Construction Permanent Financing: type of loan is used to finance the construction of a home. Banks lend the money to customers and when the home is finalized it is converted into a mortgage loan. This is the type of financing Dreamcraft uses.

Egress: there are laws which require a certain number of exits in a home. An egress is simply a way to exit a home and in most cases it is an “egress window” that is located in the basement. For basement bedrooms, egress windows are required.

Elevation: drawings that show the design of a home and how it will look from different angles.

HVAC: this is an acronym for “heat, ventilation, and air conditioning” and refers to the type of technology used to keep your home warm, cool, and maintain great air quality.

Joists: are used during the framing process, they horizontally span between walls or beams and provide support for the walls or ceiling of the home. We use engineered I-joists to create more stability for your floors and reduce squeaks.

Perc Test: or a percolation test, measures the absorption rate of soil around your lot. This lays out the septic tank plans, infiltration, and the capacity levels. 

Public Sewer: the home’s sewage that is connected to the public sewer system installed by the jurisdiction.

Public Water: the home’s water that is connected to the public water system installed by the jurisdiction.

Rough-in: all of the internal infrastructure of the home that is installed after framing; like plumbing, electrical, and HVAC.

Section: a vertical or “cut through” look at the internal components of the home to show how it is built from foundation through the roof.

Septic Sewer: if there is no public sewer, a septic tank must be installed. Septic sewer installation requires a Perc Test for your lot.

Stud: vertical fundamental pieces of framing that support the walls of the home. They come in either 2X4 or 2X6, and at Dreamcraft we always use 2X6 studs to maintain the highest quality possible in our homes.

Subdivision: the division of land to create multiple lots to build homes on.

Subfloor: the flooring installed prior the main flooring of a home to provide support. At Dreamcraft, we use Advantech Subflooring to maximize durability over time.

Trades: refers to HVAC, plumbing, electrical, and any other speciality contractors.

Truss: pre-made, triangular, wooden structures that support the roof. It helps distribute the weight of the home to the exterior walls and away from the top.

Well Water: if there is not public water, well water is installed.