In a recent post, we shared how general contractors do more than what their name may initially indicate. In fact, there’s nothing “general” about the work they do. In the simplest terms, you can think of a general contractor as the individual who oversees a project. They take care of everything from sourcing the materials that will be needed to complete the work to hiring the best subcontractors to get the job done. Given the breadth of their role and the leadership it requires, it’s no wonder that all general contractors must be registered by the state government to work in the field. If this sounds like your type of career, keep reading. Today’s post will help you make that career goal a reality.
Each region of Ohio has a specific set of steps for general contractors to be registered. We found a helpful breakdown on the General Contractors License Guide website. Today, we break down the steps you’ll need to take in each of “The Big C’s” of the Buckeye State. Scroll down to your city for clear directions on how to earn your general contractor license.
Cincinnati – our southeastern Ohio city, also known as “The Queen City,” is home to many construction career opportunities. To become a licensed general contractor in Cincinnati, follow these steps:
- First, you’ll need to gather the following documents:
- Certificate of liability insurance that covers $100,000 for damages done to an individual and $300,000 for a single occurrence of a contract.
- Proof of worker’s compensation insurance coverage.
- If you’re registering as an individual, you’ll need to have your social security number. If you’re registering as a business, you’ll use the business’ Federal Tax ID number. Speaking of registering as a business, if this is how you will be applying, you’ll need a signed Contractor Registration Assignment form.
- Next, you’ll download the application, fill it out, and send it, along with a $125 check or money order made out to “City of Cincinnati” and the above documents to: Buildings and Inspections Department located at 805 Central Avenue, Suite 500 45202 with. Be sure to include “Contractor Registration” above the address.
Cleveland – on the other corner of the state, Cleveland, also known as “The Forest City,” is another great option for construction industry hopefuls. To become a licensed general contractor in Cleveland, follow these steps:
- First, please note that you must be bonded by a bonding company, insured, and registered before performing any work.
- Your bond form must have a minimum coverage of $25,000.
- Attach a power-of-attorney form to the contractor bond.
- Include a certificate of insurance with minimum coverage of $200,000, bodily injury coverage for up to $100,000 and $50,000 property damage coverage.
- With those things gathered, you’ll need to confirm on your application if you:
- Are registered under a different company name.
- Currently hold a Cleveland license.
- Know the names of the officers of your company.
- Have the experience, training, qualifications, and necessary certificates.
- Are at least 18 years old.
- Have or have not been convicted of anything or been questioned for misconduct or fraud.
- Then, all you’ll need to do is pay $150 to complete the application process.
Columbus – our state capitol, also known as “The Biggest Small Town in America” is quite literally at the center of our state’s construction progress. To become a licensed general contractor in Columbus, follow these steps:
- First, determine if you are eligible to apply:
- Be 18 years of age or older.
- Be approved to work in the United States as a US citizen, lawful permanent resident, or nonresident who is authorized to work in the US.
- Have the required work experience: either a minimum of three years of work in the construction trades or have one year of experience working with a limited license.
- Pass an accredited exam by the International Code Council (ICC). Click here for more information.
- If you’re eligible, take the following steps:
- Click here to go straight to the City of Columbus Contractor Licensing/Registration page and download the application.
- Mail or hand deliver your completed and notarized application to: The Department of Building & Zoning Services, located at 757 Carolyn Ave 43224. Just make sure that it’s in their hands one week before the next Home Improvement Board Meeting, which meets the first Wednesday of every month.
- If your application is approved, you’ll need to complete just a few more steps:
- Obtain an official bond totaling $25,000.
- Show proof of liability insurance that covers a minimum of $300,000 for damages to a single person as well as a minimum of $500,000 for a single occurrence.
We wish the best of luck to everyone who applies to be a general contractor in the state of Ohio this year. We can’t wait to see the great work you do in 2021 and throughout your career.