Florida Contractor License Guide

In Florida, contractor licensing is done at the state and local levels. If you want to perform work anywhere within the state of Florida, you will need a Certified License, and if you want to perform work in a specific city/county, you will need a Registered License.

Both licensing processes are handled by the Construction Industry Licensing Board under the guidance of the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation.

We've witnessed countless successful applications, and we're here to guide you on the path to securing a contractor's license in Florida.

Types of Contractor License in Florida

Florida has two major categories of licenses: Certified (state-level) and Registered (local-level). So, the first step is to determine the type of Florida contractor license you need.

Certified licenses

Certified licenses are statewide and allow you to work as a contractor anywhere in Florida.

There are several certified licenses to apply for, and they include:

Registered licenses

Registered licenses are limited to certain local jurisdictions and only allow you to work in the cities or counties where you hold a certificate of competency.

These licenses are applied to both general contractors and specialty trades, and there are also different applications for each type:

How to Get a Contractor License in Florida

After understanding the right type of license you need, let’s explore step-by-step how to navigate this licensing journey effectively.

1. Access and Complete the License Application Form

2. Pass the Florida Contractors License Exam

To obtain a certified Florida contractor license, you need to pass the relevant Division I or II examination (excluding Pool Contractors). The exams are administered by Professional Testing, Inc.. You can register and apply online via their website or contact them at 407-264-0562 or at [email protected]. Further information can be found in the Examination Registration Instructions and Application.

You can find a list of specialized contractor license schools in Florida that offer exam preparation.

3. Fulfill Requirements and Obtain Required Documents

  • Provide proof of financial responsibility

All applicants are required to submit a credit report with a minimum 660 FICO-derived credit score. It is your responsibility to ensure the credit reporting agency includes that score on the credit report.

Note: If your credit score is below 660, you must furnish a Florida surety bond or a letter of credit.

  • Submit electronic fingerprints

You must scan and submit electronically your fingerprints using one of the Florida Department of Law Enforcement Livescan Device Vendors.

Note: Ensure there is enough time for the FDLE to process your results by submitting your fingerprints at least five (5) days before sending your license application. Further information regarding electronic fingerprinting can be found on the state website.

  • Show proof of liability insurance

The minimum amount required for General Liability Insurance is as follows:

$300,000 public liability and $50,000 property damage for General and Building Contractors.

$100,000 public liability and $25,000 property damage for all other contractor categories.

  • Provide proof of workers’ compensation insurance

If you have – or plan on hiring – employees, you need to obtain workers’ compensation insurance. Further information is provided within each application.

If applying for a Certified License you will also need to provide proof of qualification: All certified license applicants must have four years’ relevant work experience or a combination of work experience and college. Further information can be found within each application (section VI – Qualifications for Certified License).

If applying for a Registered License you will also need to provide proof of competency: To obtain your registered license, you will either need to submit a current competency card from a local licensing office or a letter from a building official, stating that you are competent in the category for which you wish to be licensed.

Contractor Insurance

There are several types of insurance coverages that are recommended for contractors, but the recommended coverage will vary based on your operation.

If you’d like to learn more about all of the insurance coverages available to you, please read our contractor insurance guide.

4. Obtain Your Contractor License Bond

If you don’t have the prerequisite FICO credit score of at least 660, you may furnish a contractor license bond instead. The amount of the bond depends on the contractor category and is as follows:

  • $20,000 for Division I Contractors
  • $10,000 for Division II Contractors

Note: One of our clients in Florida recently took the Financial Responsibility Course we recommended – a savvy move. By completing the 14-hour course approved by the board, they snagged a 50% reduction in their bond amount. Practical choices like these make the licensing journey smoother, and we're here to steer you in the right direction.

Get a FREE Contractor License Bond Quote

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5. Submit Your Florida Contractor License Application

  • How to fill out the application:

Please complete your application plainly in ink.

  • Licensing Fees:

Payments must be made in the form of personal or cashier’s checks, and payable to the Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation.

  • Certified Contractor application fees:

    • $249 if applying between May 1st of an even year and August 31st of an odd year.
    • $149 if applying between September 1st of an odd year and April 30th of an even year.
  • Registered Contractor application fees:

    • $309 if applying between May 1st of an odd year and August 31st of an even year.
    • $209 if applying between September 1st of an even year and April 30th of an odd year.
  • Mailing Address:

Mail your application, along with all supporting documentation and fees, to:

Department of Business and Professional Regulation
2601 Blair Stone Road
Tallahassee, FL 32399-0783

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