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  1. #1
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    Default Acceptable / recognized terms

    I started to post this question in another on going thread but decided to not side track that thread any more then it already has been.

    One this board there is often debates over if a term ( word / phrase) is a recognized or accepted term ( word / phrase).

    Some say a term ( word/phrase) is fine if it is a trade term that has been used for years. Others say a term is not recognized or acceptable if it is not defined in an "official" code book. And still others say that not all terms are defined in "official" code books,but if a term is used / referenced in an "official" code book it is acceptable.

    What makes particular terminology acceptable to be used?
    Would it require the terminology to be widely known ( nationwide) as a trade term? Would the terminology need to be defined in an "official" ( accepted)code book?
    Would the terminology need to referenced in an "official" ( accepted) code book?

    I use the term "official" code book to reference the widely accepted codes published by the ICC and/ or the NFPA as these are the most widely used codes in the nation.

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  2. #2
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    Default Re: Acceptable / recognized terms

    There are terms that regionally understood and misunderstood outside the region. The term crawlspace is commonly used as a label for the space under a house but apparently some northerners also refer to the space behind a knee wall as a crawlspace.

    The problem comes into play when the term has multiple meanings or does not satisfactorily describe the item to different between similar yet but different items.

    The common use or slang term may be adequate for general purpose use by laypeople but may not be adequate for detailed technical debates. This forum is generally for use by knowledgeable professionals debating the finer details of technical issues. The more often we use non-slang terms, the less likely for confusion to enter the debate.

    "The Code is not a peak to reach but a foundation to build from."

  3. #3
    Darrel Hood's Avatar
    Darrel Hood Guest

    Default Re: Acceptable / recognized terms

    In my humble opinion, a term is acceptable if it communicates clearly to the intended audience. Therefore, I may consider a term acceptable to communicate with one of my clients and unacceptable to communicate with the inspectors in this forum.

    Darrel Hood
    DILIGENT PROPERTY SERVICES


  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
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    Southern Vancouver Island
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    Default Re: Acceptable / recognized terms

    Quote Originally Posted by Darrel Hood View Post
    In my humble opinion, a term is acceptable if it communicates clearly to the intended audience.
    Therefore, I may consider a term acceptable to communicate with one of my clients and unacceptable to communicate with the inspectors in this forum.

    Darrel Hood
    DILIGENT PROPERTY SERVICES
    Give yourself a pat on the head. Good boy.

    John Kogel, RHI, BC HI Lic #47455
    www.allsafehome.ca

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Lake Barrington, IL
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    Default Re: Acceptable / recognized terms

    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Ramsey View Post
    The more often we use non-slang terms, the less likely for confusion to enter the debate.
    I absolutely agree. Professionals generally stay to the terminology that is characteristic of their fields, not terms that a layperson would necessarily understand. I often tell people that I use words that may be unfamiliar to them and that I do so because I want to be exacting in what I say and that if my information, as I wrote it, is given to a qualified contractor there should be no misunderstanding.

    I've read plenty of reports from other inspectors that could not be understood because of watered down terminology, poor grammar and lack of proof reading. It's no wonder that some clients can easily become plaintiffs.

    Eric Barker, ACI
    Lake Barrington, IL

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
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    Maryland
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    2,776

    Default Re: Acceptable / recognized terms

    I smell a panel - sub panel here somewhere.


  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Circle, MT
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    Default Re: Acceptable / recognized terms

    I include a list of definitions for words/terms I use in the report ie: GFCI, soffit/fascia, cricket, closure strips, sub-panel. This separate list goes with every report and helps with the "dumb" questions everyone is scared to ask


  8. #8
    C.Johnson's Avatar
    C.Johnson Guest

    Default Re: Acceptable / recognized terms

    Quote Originally Posted by Bruce Ramsey View Post
    There are terms that regionally understood and misunderstood outside the region. The term crawlspace is commonly used as a label for the space under a house but apparently some northerners also refer to the space behind a knee wall as a crawlspace.

    The problem comes into play when the term has multiple meanings or does not satisfactorily describe the item to different between similar yet but different items.
    You are Correct Sir...Most around here use the term Crawlspace as to label area under home, but at times it is used to label space behind knee-walls in attic, some homes up here have an access panel to get behind the knee-wall for use as storage space, (if the attic area is finished) but it should be described as Attic Crawlspace.
    I am from the South originally, I had to adapt to the Northern way
    I still get, are you from around here? lol... I guess it's the way I talk


  9. #9
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Spring City/Surrounding Philadelphia area
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    Default Re: Acceptable / recognized terms

    Every once in a while, somebody will call and describe a house as a duplex which is building with two living units to me. The house ends up being a twin (attached to another house on one side). Some people describe a property as a condo and it actually is a townhouse.

    "It takes a big man to cry. It takes an even bigger man to laugh at that man". - Jack Handey

  10. #10
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Location
    Tyler, TX
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    Default Re: Acceptable / recognized terms

    Quote Originally Posted by Darrel Hood View Post
    In my humble opinion, a term is acceptable if it communicates clearly to the intended audience. Therefore, I may consider a term acceptable to communicate with one of my clients and unacceptable to communicate with the inspectors in this forum.

    Darrel Hood
    DILIGENT PROPERTY SERVICES
    Yes, exactly what medical doctors do.

    Bruce Thompson, Lic. #9199
    www.TylerHomeInspector.com
    Home Inspections in the Tyler and East Texas area

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