A Allotment
– A parcel of land whose boundaries are shown on a survey plan and known as a ‘section’ in New Zealand.- A building or party of a building, with or without land, shown on a cross lease or unit title plan.Architrave
Timber moulding surrounding a door or window opening.

A railing or barrier to prevent someone from falling. Often installed when the height is 1M or more. Common balustrades are around stairs and landings, or around decks and pools.

Barge Board
A timber or metal board fixed to the front edge of a gabled roof.

A receding slope of a wall, structure, or earthwork.

Load bearing cross members, usually timber or steel, that support the upper structure of a building – additional floors and roofs.

Bottom Plate
Also called a sole plate, this is the board on which the bottoms of the wall framing studs stand.

Box Gutter
A concealed roof gutter used behind parapets. Also known as a ‘hidden gutter’.

Building Code
The national, mandatory standards for building work. All building work in New Zealand must comply with the Building Code.

Building Consent
Consent issued by a building consent authority for building work to begin in accordance with the approved plans and specifications.

Building Line
The distances from the ends and/or sides of the allotment beyond which construction may not extend. It may be established by restrictive covenants on the certificate of title, or by local council requirements. Also known as the setback line.

C Cavity
A space or void between an external cladding and the structural wall behind it. For example the void between brick veneer cladding and the timber frame in an external wall.Cavity Slider
A sliding door that recesses into a pocket in the wall framing, leaving clear wall space on both sides of the doorway.Cavity System
A method (or system) of forming a cavity gap between particular building elements to encourage air circulation.Certificate of Title
Document which shows the ownership of a piece of land, held in Lands and Deeds Registry Offices. It can include the owner’s details, type of ownership, area, legal description, mortgages, covenants and consent conditions.Cladding
A protective or insulating layer fixed to the outside of a building or another structure.

Code of Compliance Certificate
Code Compliance Certificate or Consent Completion Certificate. A certificate issued by the local authority or council after construction is complete, notifying that building work has been completed in accordance with the building consent.

A concept drawing is a drawing of the proposed building that may not include all details but provides an example or idea of the finished product.

D Double Glazing
Glazing with two glass panels separated by a sealed air space providing insulation and sound protection.
E Easement
A right that a property owner has to some use of the (usually adjoining) property of another. Examples of easements include: a right of way (this is a right to pass over another person’s land, such as a driveway).Eaves
The end section of a roof which projects past the horizontal wall of the structure.Elevation
The exterior sides of a building drawn to scale from the floor plan.
F Fascia
A timber or metal board fixed to the lower edges of the roof where guttering is attached.Finished Ground Level
The level of ground around the structure after all landscaping, paving, paths or decks have been completed.Flashing
A building element used on a joint between two materials designed to catch and drain rainwater to prevent it penetrating the interior. Inadequate flashings have been linked to problems with Weathertightness.Floor Plan
A scale drawing of the homes layout from a birds eye view.Foundation
Those parts of a building or structure such as piles, piers or footings which transmit and distribute loads to the ground.

The skeletal framework of a building to which roofs, floors and cladding are attached. Usually constructed of wood or steel, the components of the frame include studs, beams, joists and rafters.

G Gable
The part of a wall that encloses the end of a pitched roof showing triangular open ended roof edges.Gib Stopping
To fill the surface that is to be painted providing a flat surface such as nail holes, GIB joins and cracks. Note: there are differing levels of finish in this work.Gutter
Plastic or metal channel affixed to the fascia for collecting water run-off from the roof area.
H Hip
The seam formed between two roof planes that meet at an external corner and runs up to a ridge. The opposite of valley.
I Isolating Valve
A valve installed to isolate the water system in a structure.
J Joists
Parallel beams of timber, concrete or steel for supporting floors or ceilings, etc.
Licensing Building Practitioners (LBPs). A licensing system for the building industry covering designers and trades. From March 2012 certain critical building work will need to be carried out or supervised by a Licensed Building Practitioner.LIM Report
Land Information Memorandum. This is a document from the local authority which discloses a number of known features about the site. This may include location of stormwater and sewer lines and connection points, land zoning, wind zones, and soil types.Long Run Roofing
Metal sheets overlapped which run the full length of a roof.Level
Something relatively flat and even.
M Masonry
Bricks made from clay or other material joined together with mortar.
P Piles
A heavy beam of timber, concrete, or steel, driven or set into the earth as a foundation or support for a structure.Plans
The set of construction plans including the, floor plan, elevations, site plan, and in certain instances other construction details (a.k.a. drawings)Plaster
Materials used which when mixed with water will set and harden after application to a surface such as a plaster cladding.
R Resource Consent
A consent issued by a Territorial Authority to use the land in a way that is not a permitted activity under a council or district plan. For example, locating a building closer to the boundary than permitted on the District Plan, requires Resource Consent.
S Scotia
A shaped timber mould installed at the join of walls and ceilings.Setting Out
Using pegs to show the position of a structure on a site, ensuring to clear site boundaries or noted areas of concern.Site Plan
This is a birds-eye-view of the section, showing the position of the building and other relevant factors like waste water pipes and vehicle access.Skirting
Timber trim fixed on a wall at its base where it joins the floor.Soffit
The lower face or underside of a roof’s eaves.

A written document containing the detail and inclusions of a building project. This will be complimentary to the contract and contract plans.

Vertical timber, forming part of a wall where cladding of lining will be fixed to.

Stud Height
The height of the wall framing a room. Note that this height will generally be greater than the height from floor coverings to ceiling.

T Top Plate
The horizontal piece of timber running along the top of a timber framed wall.
V Variation
A change to the approved plans and specifications for a building project, occurring during construction. Requiring an amendment to the building consent, that is checked, approved and recorded by the building consent authority.
W Working drawings
Complete set of drawings needed to construct your home (i.e. elevations, floor plans, details etc)