There is always a need for reliable and affordable home improvement contractors. Given the safety considerations involved with home improvement work, any person or company providing “alternation, remodeling or replacement of a building or part of a building used as a residence” must obtain a home improvement license. According to the Maryland Home Improvement Commission, those providing the aforementioned work for “individual condominium units” must also be licensed.
In order to obtain a home improvement license in Maryland, an applicant must have a minimum of two years work experience, education or combined work experience and education in the field of home improvement. Work experiences can include working for other home improvement companies or even charities such as Habitat for Humanity. Education can include technical training programs in the fields of home improvement, including carpentry.
In addition, all applicants must demonstrate what the Department of Labor, Licensing and Regulation (DLLR) refers to “financial solvency.” The determination for establishing financial solvency includes the assessment of an applicant’s net worth, credit rating and other financial records such as personal bank statements. Alternatively, however, as an applicant that cannot demonstrate financial solvency can instead obtain a co-signer or a surety bond.
If a home improvement license applicant will be performing the home improvement work under a company, the DLLR requires the submission of proof that the company is in fact registered with the State of Maryland. It should be noted that Son of Media strongly recommends that client applicants always perform work under a company.
As with many other regulated professional or trade licenses, there are insurance requirements. The State requires that applicants provide proof of a liability insurance coverage in the minimum amount of $50,000. However, Son of Media recommends that our client applicants obtain a certificate of insurance for a minimum sum of $1,000,000.
Home improvement license applicants must also demonstrate proficiency and understanding in Maryland home improvement law, as well as, home improvement project management, by passing an exam. The examination is open book and applicants are permitted 150 minutes to finish.
Home improvement licenses have a shelf life of two years. There are no continuing education requirements in order to renew a license. The license holder is required to maintain a minimum general liability insurance of $50,000.
The process of obtaining a home improvement license is extremely paper-work intensive. Many candidates feel overwhelmed with the many requirements and make mistakes. There are also significant administrative requirements in order to legally maintain a license and limit liability.
Son of Media can help you with all aspects of getting a license, from filing all of the paperwork, setting up companies, purchasing insurance, studying for exams and much more. Contact us for help.