Importance of Following Lien Law and Filing the Notice Commencement

Importance of Following Lien Law and Filing the Notice Commencement

Within the construction industry in Florida, deadlines and time frames are strongly enforced which means that general contractors need to have their paperwork in order. It’s also important for keeping the project on track, for example knowing the start date of a project is important, but how does one know the exact date? It’s available in the Notice of Commencement.   What is the Notice of Commencement? The notice of commitment, also known as the “Affidavit of Commencement” or the “Notice of Project Commencement” is an official document that declares the starting date of a construction project. It’s the same day that the contractor, subcontractor, or support can start providing labor and materials for the project.   The NOC is thus an announcement that a project has started. It also contains information that is useful for different stakeholders at various stages of the project. An NOC will usually contain: The property owner’s name and address A description of the property and the full address A brief description of the work that is to be done The general contractor’s name, address and contact information The contractor’s surety information The lender’s information Details of the property owner’s legal representatives The expiration date of the Notice The property owners’ signatures (helpful if payment issues arise)   For general contractors in Florida, this information, as well as the signatures from the property owners, is very important. The information can be used if payment issues arise. Additionally, pre-lien notices (such as the Notice to Owner and the mechanic’s liens) will rely on this information. It is therefore recommended that general contractors, as well as...
Answering Questions for Prospective Vocational Rehabilitation Vendors

Answering Questions for Prospective Vocational Rehabilitation Vendors

Vocational Rehabilitation (or VR) is a federal-state program. The program aims to help people with physical or mental disabilities to find and hold down a job. VR is focused on helping people with disabilities establish meaningful careers. For individuals to become eligible for VR services, they must: Have a physical, mental, emotional or learning disability that is a barrier to gainful employment Need VR to help prepare the individual to gain or keep employment Be able to benefit from the VR services   What is a Vocational Rehabilitation Vendor? Vocational Rehabilitation vendors are individuals or business that makes their services available to VR customers that will help contribute to the goal of employment. This includes services such as medical services, opportunities for training, and specialized equipment. Vocational Rehabilitation will register all vendors from whom services are purchased for VR customers.    What are the Different Types of Services That Vocational Rehabilitation Offers? As per their website, Vocational Rehabilitation offers: Medical and Psychological Assessment – to determine what the client needs in terms of medical and psychological support Vocational Evaluation and Planning – to determine what the client is capable of, and take steps to meet that potential Career Counselling and Guidance – here, vocational counselors will talk with VR clients to determine skills and interests and define work goals. Training and Education After High School – this can include programs and classes that teach specific job skills,  On-the-Job Training – including vocational training, clients, receive the skills they need to pursue a specific career Supported Employment Services – such as a job coach to help the client manage the...

How to Find the Best General Contractor for the Job in Florida

Before starting work on a renovation, extension, or building project in Florida, someone with a valid general contractor’s license will need to oversee the project and hiring the right person will be the first thing that needs to be done. This is one of the most important steps and shouldn’t be rushed. The individual should have the right credentials, they need to have a valid license, and they should also have the right experience to be able to complete the job successfully. Once the general contractor for the project has been hired, they will then be able to hire the relevant sub-contractors, including plumbers, carpenters, and electricians. There are two main checks that should be done before hiring a general contractor: 1. Check That the General Contractor’s License is Valid In Florida, the regulation of general contractors is overseen by the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation (DBPR), and they have all the licensed contractors listed online on MyFloridaLicense.com. It is possible to search by Licensee Name, Licensee Number, by City or County, or by License Type. Simply navigate to the website, type in the details, and search. For a more general search, the best option is to search by city to receive a list of licensed contractors. Check the Details of the License The results will show the type of license, the license number, and the status. Pay particular attention to the status – it should be Current, Active (not Revoked, Null and Void or Suspended). By clicking on any of the results, it is then possible to see the contact details – check those against those...

Paperwork that a Florida General Contractor Needs

To perform general contracting work in Florida, you need to hold a contractor’s license. There are two options: to be licensed throughout the whole state or to work only locally in your jurisdiction. Both licenses are processed by the Florida Construction Industry Licensing Board. The board operates under the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation (DBPR). So, in order to hold a valid general contractor license in Florida, the contractor will need to adhere to the requirements set out by these agencies. General Contractor License Types in Florida There are two types of licenses that you can apply for that both fall under the Department of Business and Professional Regulation in order to operate as a general contractor. 1. Certified License A certified general contractors license is valid throughout the state of Florida, permitting the license holder to work anywhere in the state. 2. Registered License This license is more limited as the contractor is only permitted to work within specified local jurisdictions. To qualify for a registered license, the holder will need to have been issued a certificate of competency by that jurisdiction. There are also various, more specific contractor licenses that fall under these classifications. In particular, a general contractor may wish to apply for the following additional licenses: Building Contractor – this license is for construction work that includes the repair, remodeling, and improvement of commercial and residential buildings that are more than three stories in height. Residential Contractor – this license allows for the construction as well as repair, remodeling, and improvement of homes for between one and three families, lower than two stories....
The Role and Requirements for a General Contractor in Tampa, Florida

The Role and Requirements for a General Contractor in Tampa, Florida

Many homeowners in Florida are comfortable with hiring a handyman or specialist for specific home-related jobs. This would include smaller tasks such as replacing a toilet, laying new flooring or installing a generator. Yet, for bigger jobs, such as a kitchen remodel, the work quickly becomes significantly more complicated. In projects such as this, several specialists are hired to complete the different parts of the job. However, most jobs build on one another and therefore must be scheduled in a particular order. It is the responsibility of the general contractor in Florida, to schedule each specialist in the correct order and to ensure that all jobs are completed with ease and success. Each subcontractor, from the plumber, to the flooring specialist, to the person fitting the cupboards, needs to be managed and coordinated correctly.   The Role of a General Contractor This is where the skills of a general contractor come to the forefront. It is their responsibility to assess the full scope of the project from the very initial meeting with the homeowner. The GC is responsible for devising the project plan to ensure its successful completion within the estimated timeframe and budget. General contractors also serve as the primary point of contact for all subcontractors and the client. To manage this successfully, you will need to have a good understanding of all aspects of home remodeling and be able to answer any questions that the homeowner has. This includes insights into the specific types of needed building materials and the skill level and number of workers that will be required for the job. You will also need...
The Best Way to Win the Job as a General Contractor in Florida

The Best Way to Win the Job as a General Contractor in Florida

Your job as a general contractor in Florida is to simplify the construction or remodeling process for the homeowner. In many cases, homeowners have had a bad experience or have heard horror stories by a friend who’s had a remodeling project go badly. This is usually due to an unreliable general contractor. Therefore, the best way to win a job is to build the customer’s confidence in your business. They are more likely to choose your services if you answer their questions, ensure your paperwork is in order, share good references, offer a written estimate and set up clear terms of payment.   1. Answer All Their Questions Quickly and Efficiently The way that you conduct yourself in your dealings with the client, gives them a good idea of what they can expect for the rest of the project. Prior to the homeowner signing with you, ensure that you answer all their questions as fully and as quickly as possible. This will allow the client to see how you will conduct yourself as their advocate once the contract has been signed. Answer all questions thoroughly and make it easy for them to understand. Homeowners want to be confident that they comprehend the implications for the project. For example, they want to know their expected cost and the estimated timeline for the project. Be as transparent about the whole process as possible, so that your client feels comfortable moving forward with you at the reins. 2. Ensure That All Your Paperwork is in Order A homeowner or building owner, especially for larger projects, will do their due diligence researching your...
5 Ways to Outsource Your Paperwork as a General Contractor in Florida

5 Ways to Outsource Your Paperwork as a General Contractor in Florida

Contractors Reporting Services in Tampa, FL leads the way in helping general contractors run their construction business. From assisting with Florida contractor’s license requirements and sharing insight into how to become a contractor, they offer an end-to-end service for general contractors. As a licensed general contractor you have more than enough to deal with on a daily basis without the additional stress and headaches of paperwork. While you understand the importance of filling the annual reports with the Secretary of State and keeping your workers’ compensation exemption renewed, it can be difficult to fit these tasks into an already packed day. Application Service for Your Florida General Contractor License Once you have passed your State exam in Florida, you will need to provide specific application information for that trade. You can use an Initial Application service to help you obtain your general contractor license quickly and efficiently to avoid any delay. Financial Stability Reviews and Reporting These reviews and reports include checking public records at the County, State, and Federal levels. Both the State as well as the relevant local County or City municipalities will approve these reports. They will be completed by Contractors Reporting Services within twenty-four hours of receiving the information. Corporation or LLC (Limited Liability Corporation) Formation This does not need to be an expensive undertaking. In stark contrast to other overpriced websites, Contractors Reporting Services offers an affordable solution. Friendly, professional staff offers a customized solution and the personal attention that you need. We’ll answer all your questions and deliver the right  solution for your business, setting you up as either a C-Corporation or S-Corporation....
The Top 6 Worker’s Compensation Insurance FAQs for General Contractors in Florida

The Top 6 Worker’s Compensation Insurance FAQs for General Contractors in Florida

As a general contractor in Florida, you need to understand how worker’s compensation works to ensure that your business and employees are covered. To help general contractors understand the basics, we’ve answered the top 6 questions frequently asked by our clients. Who needs workers’ compensation coverage? Workers’ compensation coverage is needed for all construction employers who have one or more employees (including any non-exempt business owners). And, for non-construction employers, four or more employees (which also includes any non-exempt business owners). Trades that are considered to be in the construction industry can be viewed in Florida’s Administrative Code. Do I need worker’s compensation insurance if I hire sub-contractors? Sub-contractors are responsible for their own insurance that will cover workers in the event of a work-related incident. But it is the responsibility of the primary contractors to ensure that the sub-contractor has coverage for its workers. The contractor is responsible for the payment of benefits if a worker is injured without being protected by insurance. What proof does a contractor need from a sub-contractor to verify insurance coverage? For a sub-contractor that has a workers’ compensation insurance policy, before beginning a job the contractor must obtain any of the following: A copy of the ‘information page’ from the insurance policy A screen print from the proof of coverage database confirming that coverage is in effect A Certificate of Liability Insurance along with documentation from either the producer or carrier confirming that workers’ compensation coverage is valid For a sub-contractor that is a client company of an employee leasing company, the contractor needs to obtain: A Certificate of Liability Insurance A...
How to Know Whether an LLC or a Corp is the Best Fit for Your Construction Business

How to Know Whether an LLC or a Corp is the Best Fit for Your Construction Business

There are a number of factors that should be considered when deciding whether to set up your business as a corporate or limited liability company (LLC). This includes the type of work that you do, the number of employees that you have, as well as various tax considerations. Deciding to formalize the structure of your company as an LLC or corporation has important implications and should only be undertaken when you have a clear understanding of the pros and cons of each. Once you have a general contractor license, and before filing papers, consider getting expert advice to ensure that you make the right decision for your business. Choosing a Corporation vs. LLC An LLC (limited liability company) is a hybrid form of partnership that offers many of the advantages of a corporation and a partnership. Profits and losses can be passed through to owners without the business being taxed, and owners are shielded from personal liability. A corporation can be taxed, held legally liable for its actions and can make a profit. The main benefit of a corporation is the protection from legal liability while two key disadvantages are the costs to incorporate and the extensive paperwork that needs to be filed. An S-corporation (Subchapter corporation) helps avoid double taxation which is a drawback for regular C corporations. Business Freedom We find that, for most construction businesses an LLC is the best fit because, while both a corporation and an LLC offer protection for the owner from liability, an LLC offers more freedom in how the business is managed. An example of this is in an LLC’s operating...
The Importance of a General Contractor License in Florida

The Importance of a General Contractor License in Florida

In order to run a profitable, sustainable business as a licensed general contractor in Florida you need to comply with the relevant regulations for the state. This includes holding the correct permits and licenses. Florida State’s licensing requirements are specific and, depending on the nature of your work; you may need a different license in order to work legally. Contracting without a license in Florida is a serious offense, and the penalties are severe. For this reason, it’s important to understand who monitors compliance, what the different licenses are, as well as the consequences for non-compliance. Who Monitors Contractor License Compliance? In Florida, applying for a contractor license is done with the Construction Industry Licensing Board (CILB) headquartered in Tallahassee with field offices throughout the State. They are responsible for licensing and regulating the construction industry. They meet regularly to consider applications, adjudicate on disciplinary cases as well as conducting licensing and discipline hearings. Their website offers the functionality to perform a Florida contractor license search which makes it easy for all parties involved in a project to verify that they are working with a contractor who holds a valid general contractors license. It’s an important check as it can help protect an owner from having to double-pay, and also reduces the risk of a subcontractor or supplier not being paid by the general contractor.  The website also allows complaints to be lodged and has a portal for contractor license applications. What are the Different General Contractor Licenses? In Florida the law provides for two different license classifications: ‘Certified’ – a certified contractor license is valid throughout Florida ‘Registered’...