If you want to get a general contractor license, Oregon authorities require you to follow a series of steps so you can prove that you have the expertise and knowledge necessary to do your job well. Since contracting is a regulated profession in this state, it’s important to know how to follow the appropriate procedures.
Decide Which Endorsements You Need
An endorsement in Oregon is a type of structure on which the state licenses you to work. In this state, you can choose one of three different endorsements: residential, small commercial, and large commercial.
The residential endorsement primarily covers single-family homes, such as those you might find on any suburban street in Oregon. It also allows you to work on multi-family housing structures, such as condominiums and apartments, as long as they are no taller than four stories. You can also work on specific units within a taller multi-family complex.
The small and large commercial structure requirements are slightly more complex. In Oregon, a small commercial structure is typically a building of fewer than 10,000 square feet. You might be able to work on larger structures if the entire estimate for the project totals less than $250,000.
Take Your Training
You can’t get a general contractor license in Oregon unless you take a minimum of 16 hours of pre-licensing training in business and law, according to the State of Oregon. After you take your training, you have to pass the state-mandated test before you can apply for your license.
Having experience on a construction site or formal training in contracting might provide you with additional assistance in passing the exam. These assets could also help you start a more profitable career.
Obtain the Necessary Coverage
To get a general contractor license, Oregon requires you to carry liability insurance as well as worker’s compensation insurance (only applicable if you plan to staff your business) and a Construction Contractors Board (CCB) surety bond. Without this coverage, the state will not issue your license.
Your general liability insurance coverage requirements vary depending on your endorsement. Residential contractors need at least $500,000 of coverage for every occurrence, while commercial contractors need between $1 and $2 million in aggregate coverage.
Keep Up With Your Training
Although the initial training for your contractor license is extremely important, you must also participate in continuing education. If you’ve had your residential license for fewer than six years, for instance, you need 16 hours of continuing education every two years. Otherwise, you could use your license.
Fortunately, it’s easy to take your continuing education courses online. Study and complete the classes on your own schedule without leaving your home or office. To select your courses and get started on fulfilling your requirements, browse courses by state.