So, are you thinking of starting a construction business in Ohio? Like in most other US states, if you want to be a professional contractor in Ohio and do residential or commercial work, you will need to meet local standards for bonding and contractor licensing. In Buckeye State, a contractor’s license is applied for and issued locally.
If you have the right information, becoming a licensed contractor in Ohio doesn’t have to be difficult. In this article, we take a step-by-step guide to getting your Ohio contractor’s license.
Decide on the type of contractor license
When it comes to contractor licensing, each city has specific requirements. For example, construction contractors in Columbus must have either a general contractor’s license or a home improvement contractor’s license, while in the city of North Canton, all contractors performing construction work must register with the city.
So, once you have decided where you are going to start your business, be sure to apply for all necessary licenses from the local authorities.
Complete the required application forms
The application for a home improvement contractor will ask you to confirm that you meet the standards and describe the scope of your work. Download and complete the printable Home Improvement Contractor Application. Make sure you have your application notarized otherwise it will not be processed.
Application forms for the City of Columbus can be found via the Department of Building and Zoning Services.
The form for the Town of Warrensville is available on the Forms and Permits Page.
The form for the City of Canton Nord is accessible via the Department of Permits and Development.
Obtain required documentation
Home improvement applicants must submit proof of work experience and submit a copy of the exam results. General contractor applicants will be required to provide proof of at least $500,000 of liability insurance policy.
This type of insurance can protect your business against claims for property damage, accidents, and customer injuries resulting from your work. Nowadays you can watch Ohio business insurance online and choose the font that best suits your needs. In minutes, you can purchase coverage and share your insurance certificate.
You will also need proof that you have been a licensed engineer in Ohio for at least 3 years or proof of being a tradesperson working under a licensed contractor on projects requiring permits. Proof may include the license number of the contractor you worked with, W-2s, or a permit.
Pass the licensing exam
In some cities like Columbus, all candidates must pass the Ohio Home Improvement Contractor – 767 exam administered by an accredited testing agency with a mark of at least 70%. For more information and to schedule the test, contact the International Code Council.
Obtain a contractor license bond
A contractors license bond is a legally enforceable contract that protects you, your customers and the general public and is required to obtain a contractors license.
The City of Columbus requires all applicants to obtain a bond of $25,000 and attach the bond form in the application package. In Warrensville, the bond must be in the amount of $5,000, while in North Township applicants must submit an original bond of $10,000.
Submit your application
Completed and notarized applications, along with the application fee, must be mailed or delivered in person.
Application and license fees:
In the City of Columbus, the application fee for general contractor applications is $350 and for home improvement license applications the fee is $185 (non-refundable). Fees are paid annually and registrations are valid for 12 months after issuance.
In the city of Warrensville, payments can be made by certified or company check, credit card or money order. Cash and personal checks are not accepted.
In the city of Canton du Nord, payments can only be made by check, credit card or cash. The registration fee is $150.
You’ve come to the right place if you’ve ever considered becoming a licensed contractor in the state of Ohio. We hope this step-by-step guide has helped you get a general idea of what the contractor licensing process looks like and what documents you will need to get licensed as soon as possible.