DesignHouse Plans

Helpful Building Terms


Bow - A curved projection formed by at least five windows joined at obtuse angles.

Clerestory - An outside wall of a room or building that rises above an adjoining roof and contains windows.

Dentil - One of a series of small projecting rectangular blocks forming a molding under an overhang, most common in Colonial Style homes.

Dormer - A structure projecting from a roof, containing a window (looks like a small dog house)

Footprint - The outline of a home's foundation - used for site planning.

Gable - The vertical traingular end of a building from the eaves to the ridge.

Gable Roof - A roof consisting of two rectangular planes sloping up to a ridge.

Hip Roof - A roof with sloping ends and sides that meet at a ridge.

Keystone - A wedge shaped detail at the top of an arch.

Lanai - A patio or Veranda

Palladian Window - A window arrangement with a half-round window on top of a wider rectangular window.

Porte cochere - A covered drive-thru structure that extends from the side of a home.

Quoin - A large square or rectangular stone set into the corner of a masonry building.

Sidelight - A vertical window beside a door or another window.

Transom Window - A narrow window above another window or door.

Tray Ceiling - A recessed ceiling - sometimes with the sides sloped at an angle.

Vaulted Ceiling - A ceiling that slopes up to a peak. Like an upside down V

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