The Five (main) Types of Construction are:

Keep in mind that buildings are rarely only one type.

Type 1 – Fire Resistive

This concrete and steel structure, called fire-resistivity when first built at the turn of the century, is supposed to confine a fire by its construction. This type of construction in which the building elements and roof considered to be non-combustible materials, such as concrete and steel. 


Type 2 – Non-Combustible

This type of building has steel or concrete walls, floors, and structural framework similar to type I construction, but the roof is combustible such as be a layer of asphalt waterproofing, with a combustible felt paper covering. 


Type 3 – Ordinary

This type of constructed building is also called “brick-and-joist.” It has masonry-bearing walls but the floors, structural framework, and roof are made of wood or other combustible material.


Type 4 – Heavy Timber

These buildings have masonry walls like type III buildings but the interior wood consists of heavy timber.  The floor and roof are plank board. 


Type 5 – Wood Framed

Wood-frame construction is the most combustible of the five building types. The interior framing and exterior walls may be wood. A wood-frame building is the only one of the five types of construction that has combustible exterior walls. This is the typical single-family home construction method. 

* Not all buildings are just one type.  There are times when buildings are 2 types or 3 types as well.  For example, “Podium” is Type 2 or Type 3 on the ground floor with Type 1 on top.

See the infographic below for a more detailed description.