Required Experience and Education for a Contractor License in Florida

Required Experience and Education for a Contractor License in Florida

Based on the recent news, the construction industry in the state of Florida is one of the most promising sectors in the US—this makes it an opportune time to acquire a contractor’s license and get the money rolling into your b ank account. Note that as soon as you receive your Florida contractor’s license, continuing education courses are needed for FL contractor’s license renewal (around 14 hours). Before you figure out what kind of experience and education you specifically need, you have to decide what kind of FL contractor license to acquire. There are two different kinds of contractor’s license in Florida. The registered contractor’s license in Florida allows the contractor to work inside a particular area in Florida. What is needed for this kind of Florida contractor’s license is a certificate of competency. And the other kind is a certified license. This FL contractor license lets you as a contractor work anywhere in the state.  Focusing on Experience and Education For Florida, there are different approaches to qualifying for a contractor’s license. First, you must have 4 years of experience and/or education. The education can be 4 years at a school of higher learning that has been accredited and gives you degree that is connected to construction. Or you can opt for 3 years of higher learning course followed by 1 year of working experience in the construction industry. As you can see, there should be a combination of experience and education. There are also other ways in which to combine experience and education in order to qualify as a contractor. You can have 3 years being a...
Financial Responsibilities for a Contractor

Financial Responsibilities for a Contractor

A general contractor license holder is a self-employed individual who takes up contractual assignments and projects. One of the great things about having a contractor’s license is that the holder doesn’t have to deal with the typical employer and employee relationship. This gives them the freedom to work in a more positive way. But this does not mean that their work is taken casually. A contractor should take on the employer responsibilities and tasks and make sure that they are meeting their obligations, particularly the financial ones—which are usually tied to legalities. File Taxes General contractors are responsible for their own accounting or bookkeeping. The general contractor is responsible for paying and filing the taxes on the income they earned from their clients. With this, a client should give the contractor’s license holder a W-9 tax form prior to issuing payments. By the coming January of next year, the client gives the general contractor the Form 1099-MISC, which includes the payment amounts made previously. The general contractor must get all of the Form 1099s from all of the income that they gained throughout the year. Afterwards, they should file this with the Internal Revenue Service, as well as the state revenue office (if there is income tax collected on the state level). For example, you have to file in the Florida revenue office if you have a Florida contractor’s license. The general contractor must also claim entitled deductions for spending on mileage, office supplies, advertising, equipment, and the like.  Get Benefits and Insurance  Being a general contractor, clients do not pay the general contractor salaries or insurance. Of course,...
Steps to Apply for a Contractor’s License in Florida

Steps to Apply for a Contractor’s License in Florida

Applying for a contractor’s license in Florida is accomplished at the local and state level. The process of licensing is under the purview of the Construction Industry Licensing Board, with guidance from the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation. In this article, we discuss the steps you need to take to apply for a Florida contractor’s license. Figure Out the Kind of Contractor License You Need to Apply For There are two kinds of FL contractor’s license. At the level of the state, there is the Certified License and at the local level, there is the Registered License. Once you’ve figured this out, you have to determine if you are a Division I Contractor or a Division II Contractor. Division I Contractors are general contractors, building contractors, and residential contractors. Division II Contractors, on the other hand, are more specific, such as Underground Utility Contractors, Tank Lining Applicators, Specialty Contractors, Solar Contractors, Sheet Metal Contractors, Roofing Contractors, Spa/Pool Contractors, Pollutant Storage System Contractors, Plumbing Contractors, Mechanical Contractors, and Air-Conditioning Contractors. Get the Application Forms You can get the application forms through the Construction Industry Licensing Board. Study for and Pass the Exams To get a Certified Contractor License, you have to study for and pass the Division I or Division II exams, as applicable. This does not include Pool Contractors. Professional Testing conducts these examinations. If you think you are ready to take the exams, go online to register and apply through their website or contact them via email at flconstruction@proftesting.com. More information is available in the application form. If you think you need further preparation prior to...
Winning a Project with a Contractor’s License in Florida

Winning a Project with a Contractor’s License in Florida

If you have a contractor’s license in Florida, you know that the very best thing to holding that license is actually winning projects. Winning projects entail that you bid on them first. In fact, construction contractors usually get most of their jobs through the bidding process. In this article, we discuss some ways in which to improve your bidding, so you can win those projects, especially since you have that FL contractor’s license. Remember the Two Golden Rules The two golden rules are: submit very accurate cost estimates and offer the lowest bid among all other contractor’s license holders. The second rule is almost always true when you’re bidding for a government project. For other projects, qualifications and other variables are just as important as your price level. To make sure you’re bidding the right amount, you can make use of construction building software. Be Accurate with Your Bids As previously mentioned, giving accurate bids is very crucial to winning projects. This means, for example, if you have a FL contractor license, you should be able to bid using the costs and terms of material, labor and overhead and indirect expenses. Knowing the right amount will get you to that sweet spot without having to price your bid too low so that you’re losing money or pricing your bid so high that you don’t even get to be considered for the project. There are several ways in which to increase the accuracy of your cost computations. First, factor in quantity takeoffs and work scope. Second, create a bill of quantities, which itemizes the materials and work needed. Third, check...
What are the Insurance Requirements for Florida Contractors?

What are the Insurance Requirements for Florida Contractors?

Before we move on to discussing insurance requirements of contractors license in the state of Florida, let’s first start with understanding who a Florida general contractor insurance if for. It is basically for contractors managing new buildings, renovation services, and all other tasks related to the entire project. Normally Florida contractors have area of specialty in family homes, restaurants, commercial buildings, stadiums and factories. Mostly Florida contractors first look into specification like design, work and material and then schedule phases of the entire project as well as insurance requirements as a whole and for subcontractors. Before initially issuing or renewing a contractor’s license in the state of Florida, the applicant should show evidence that they have in place, the mandated insurance policies. To be able to accomplish this, the applicant should give a signed affidavit showing that he or she has gotten and will keep property damage and public liability insurance throughout the period of the contractor’s license in Florida. This is important for the public’s safety, welfare, and protection. In order to check on the signed affidavit’s accuracy, the Construction Industry Licensing Board will perform random sample audits of FL contractor’s license per zip code. After a written request from the Board, every Florida contractor’s license holder, within 30 days of the mailing request, must give proof of coverage using a Certificate of Insurance (original). The Certificate of Insurance is really crucial because it has to be updated on the job site, prior to working on any contract. If you do not have it, you would probably be breaching the contract and can lead to legal complications under...
Which Services in Florida Need a Contractor’s License?

Which Services in Florida Need a Contractor’s License?

The State releases FL contractor licenses according to the tasks being accomplished. This is contrary to the belief that they are being issued based on a contractor’s specialty. The process begins with the contractor registering with the Construction Industry Licensing Board (CILB). This is so that they can work in the local area of a company. If the organization chooses to work in the outskirts of the local town, they have to go through the procedures of licensing and certification. For Which Services Require the Most Number of Licenses in Florida? Generally, Florida contractors are mandated to be licensed and registered to work in the whole state. Interestingly enough, due to its sunny climate, Florida has a lot of swimming pool works that are always ongoing. Florida actually has the highest rate of swimming pools in the United States. The CILB even made its own specialty licenses to keep this particular industry highly regulated. A couple of the specialty licenses for swimming pool works are decking, excavation, piping, pool finishing, pool layout and design, and trip installation. Which Services Don’t Need a General Contractor License in Florida? Wherever you go in the state of Florida, there are many construction tasks that do not need a general contractor license, at least at the level of the state. Nevertheless, every contractor should go to their city and local county government office to double check if permits are needed so they can accomplish their work. Some particular tasks that have no need of state licenses are window treatments (excluding window installations), wallpapering, interior and exterior painting, any type of flooring, any type...
As the Holder of a Contractor’s License in Florida, Why Is It Important to Pull Permits Before Work Is Actually Done?

As the Holder of a Contractor’s License in Florida, Why Is It Important to Pull Permits Before Work Is Actually Done?

Although rules and regulations vary per location, as the holder of a contractor’s license in Florida, you know you are required to get a permit for projects that go beyond basic maintenance and repair or straightforward aesthetic boosts. A couple of requirements may seem like a hassle, but regulations are there, typically for safety reasons. Even though pulling permits may seem like a burden, this is very important before you get your work started as the holder of a FL contractor’s license. When Should I Begin to Pull Permits? The straight answer is: before you start any project as a FL contractor license holder. When city officials come across projects that does not have permits nor have been inspected, they are required to issue a cease and desist until you’ve gotten those permits. In addition, a lot of cities in Florida set heavy fines for work that was started without having the necessary permits. Moreover, going under the radar is not an option, being a certified Florida contractor’s license holder. Real estate agents and their potential buyers would most likely require proof of permits and inspection of your work. You may have to pay heavy fees if you applied for permits after the fact. As the Holder of a General Contractor License in Florida, Should I Always Be the One to Pull a Permit? As the holder of a general contractor license in Florida, you should typically be the one to pull the permits. Homeowners can only pull permits on their own if they are doing the work themselves or have family and friends who are not being paid...
What is the Impact of a Lien on the Holder of a Contractor’s License in Florida?

What is the Impact of a Lien on the Holder of a Contractor’s License in Florida?

Based on the law of the state of Florida, those who work in a property or offer materials, and are not fully paid, have the right to claim payment against the property. This is known as a construction lien. So, if the holder of a Florida contractors license fails to pay his or her suppliers for materials or subcontractors, the individuals who are owed money could look to the property as payment. What this indicates is that if a lien is filed against a property, the property can be sold against the will of the owner in order to compensate for the materials, labor, or other related services that the holder of a contractor’s license in Florida failed to pay. Here is more information on avoiding construction liens on property when hiring a FL contract license holder and having improvements of greater than $2,500. Is There a Way to Protect Myself If the Holder of a Florida Contractors License is Paid in Full but Fails to Pay Contractors or Suppliers? Yes! First of all, create a written statement that takes away your property from lien threats. This is called a Release of Lien. Prior to making any payment to a licensed contractor, make sure you get this waiver from your subcontractors and suppliers, encompassing the work done and the materials used on the property. Ask the general contractor license holder, to share the list of suppliers and contractors they have further sub-contracted for material and other related services for the property. Ask them to send you the details through registered mail. If the contract includes partial payments prior to...
If I Have a Contractor’s License in Florida, Should I Renew My Workers Compensation Exemption?

If I Have a Contractor’s License in Florida, Should I Renew My Workers Compensation Exemption?

The answer is a big yes! As a holder of a general contractor license in Florida, business owners of limited liability companies or LLCs and corporations can be included in the compensation coverage for workers and its connected premium cost determination. However, as the holder of a FL contractor license, you may opt out from this requirement and indicate your exclusion when you file for exemption via the website of the Division of Workers Compensation in Florida. Even though partnerships and sole proprietorship’s cannot file for exemption in Florida, corporations and LLCs with a Florida contractor’s license should regularly exempt their officers or members from workers compensation coverage since this can substantially decrease their yearly premiums. If A Worker Has An Exemption, Will They Be Entitled to Workers’ Compensation Benefits If They Get Hurt on the Job? If an LLC owner or a corporate officer has an exemption, they are not entitled to workers’ compensation benefits if they are hurt on the job. So, if an officer or an owner gets injured and files for an exemption, they cannot make a claim on the policy of the holder of a general contractor license in Florida or on their policy. Is Exemption Reliant on the Kind of Industry? Rules on exemption are reliant on your main industry. Note that the rules are divided into rules for construction companies and rules for non-construction companies. Exemptions in construction are not as relaxed as compared to other industries. Construction companies can only file for a maximum of three exemptions, costing $50 for every officer or owner. This can get challenging if the LLC...
Why is it Crucial to File Annual Reports  As a Holder of a Florida Contractors License?

Why is it Crucial to File Annual Reports As a Holder of a Florida Contractors License?

Those with a general contractor’s license in Florida should file an Annual Report, which confirms and/or updates the records held by the Department of State of Florida, every year. You should do this in order for you to keep your “active status” as a general contractor license holder. Note that you are mandated to file this report, whether or not you have any information to update. What are the Repercussions If You Don’t File an Annual Report? If you have a contractor’s license in Florida and you still decide not to file your annual report on or before the 3rd Friday of September, your business will be dissolved administratively. Alternatively, your business can be revoked from the Department of State’s records. This becomes effective on the 4th Friday of September. While administratively revoked or dissolved businesses can be reinstated, the additional requirements can be a hassle. You need to submit a reinstatement application and you are required to pay all of the associated fees, such as the annual reports fees due and the reinstatement fee during submission time. What if My Business Has Closed Shop? Do I Still Need to File an Annual Report? Fortunately, you are not required to file an annual report if your business as a holder of a contractor’s license in Florida has closed. What Happens After I Submit My Annual Report? If you filed online using a credit card, reports are processed and these are posted online immediately. If you paid via money order or check as a holder of a general contractor license in Florida, wait around three to five days if you...