Home Renovation Terms – 10 Renovation Terms You Should Know

Home Renovation Terms – 10 Renovation Terms You Should Know. Today’s guest blog is by New York State lawyer. The opinions expressed by the author in this and all guest blogs are not necessarily those of Gainesville Screen and Patio.

Home Renovation

Home Renovation Terms – 10 Renovation Terms You Should Know

There’s a first for everything, so renovating or remodeling your home could be one of those things. Before you hire a contractor to take on the job, you must do your research over the matter. Apart from going over the changes you want to make to your home’s layout or design, you must learn the common terms used in the business. Your contractor might say a lot of things you don’t understand, which could lead to dire misunderstandings. You might hesitate to ask them to elaborate something at the time or they might fail to explain something to its full potential. Therefore, it is upon you to protect your real estate by educating yourself in advance. Learn the following terms to simplify the conversation with a contractor:

1. General Contractor

This is the person you will be talking to for getting your home renovated. He/she is the central person in charge of the project, so make sure that he/she is licensed and insured. This person will assign workers do get the job done and shall receive the payables from you.

2. Sub-Contractor

Your general contractor is responsible for undertaking construction tasks, but additional tasks such as management of electric wiring and sanitation pipes are not included in his/her expertise. Therefore, the general contractor will call in qualified personnel to take care of the extra work; these qualified personnel (electricians, plumbers, etc.) are the sub-contractors.

3. Mechanicals

Mechanicals refers to all the systems built inside the walls of your house, i.e. wires, pipes, vents, etc.

4. Pull a Permit

Home remodeling or renovation that involves any form of demolition or construction requires a legal permit. The building inspector in your area should review and approve the plan before you initiate the project. The act of acquiring consent of legal authorities is known as ‘pull a permit’.

5. Gut a Room

When the contractor says that he/she will have to gut a room, it means they will strip off everything. This includes removal of wall and floor covering (tiles/hardwood), so everything within is exposed. Think of it as removing skin to reveal the flesh and bones.


This acronym simply spells out Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning. It will come up because the heating and cooling system of your home need to be considered before making drastic changes. Now you won’t feel embarrassed when the contractor mentions it.

7. Blueprint

If the contractor demands a blueprint, he/she is, in fact, asking for a technical illustration of the renovation plan. The blueprint provides instructions for building a project, including specific details like dimensions and materials.

8. Footings

Footings are the rebar (reinforcing steel) and concrete that support the foundation of your house.

9. House Footprint

The footprint of a house is its overall dimensions. The house footprint is altered when you opt for additional construction. If you are remodeling a rented space, make sure not to violate the Landlord-Tenant law

10. Moving a Wall

If the contractor tells you that that renovation will require moving a wall, do not take it literally. What he/she means is that a wall will have to be demolished and a new one will be built on a different spot; this step is often required to expand an existing room.

Home Renovation Terms – 10 Renovation Terms You Should Know