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Handyman License Requirements by State

May 24, 2022 · 4 minutes to read

Starting your own handyman business could be a great career move and a way to put your home and property maintenance talents to the test. Busy homeowners often rely on the expert services provided by professional handymen and handywomen. Your skills could help people repair and maintain their living spaces, so they can enjoy a safe and relaxing home.

A handyman repairs a home lock.

But before you accept your first job, you may need to get licensed. The application process for getting a handyman or contractor license varies from state to state. Buying insurance is a handyman license requirement in some states, though others do not have insurance mandates.

This guide explains how to get a handyman license in six states to help grow your small business.

California

Handypeople in California do not need a license to perform minor repairs or non-structural work. However, you will need a general contractor license to accept projects that total more than $500 in labor and materials that will become a finished part of a structure.

To receive a general contractor license in California, you will need to submit an application, complete a background check, and pass three exams (law & business, trade, and asbestos safety). You will also need to purchase a bond and show proof of General Liability insurance to become licensed.

Learn more about California’s handyman license requirements.

Florida

You do not need a license to provide basic handyman services in Florida. A general contractor license is required for projects that cost more than $500 and are part of the finished structure. Handymen can apply for either a certified (work anywhere in the state) or registered (work in specific jurisdictions only) license.

Before you can apply for a Florida general contractor license, you must first pass an exam or submit a certificate of competency in your trade. You will also need to submit a FICO credit report, pass a background check, and show proof of General Liability insurance and Workers’ Compensation coverage (if required).

Discover handyman license requirements in Florida.

Georgia

Handymen in Georgia only need a general contractor license if they work on projects totalling over $2,500. You may also need separate plumbing, electrical, carpentry, or HVAC contracting license to perform those trade skills. These licenses are overseen and issued by specialty trade organizations.

To apply for a general contractor license in Georgia, you must prove that you meet the minimum work experience and education requirements and pass an exam. You will also need to show proof of General Liability insurance and buy a surety bond.

Ohio

Ohio handypeople do not need a license to perform minor repairs or do work that costs under $1,000. A state-level general contractor license is required for plumbers, electricians, HVAC contractors, and refrigeration and hydronic contractors. Local governments issue general contractor licenses for other trades.

Requirements for state and local contractor licenses vary, but generally, you will need to have a minimum of work experience and/or education, pass a background check, and pass a trade exam. You will also need to show proof of General Liability insurance.

Discover more about Handyman license in Ohio.

Pennsylvania

Pennsylvania does not have a state-wide handyman license. However, you will need to register with the state Attorney General’s Office if you do more than $5,000 worth of home improvement work in a year.

Learn more information on Pennsylvania’s handyman license requirements.

Texas

There is no state-issued handyman license in Texas; however, you may need a local license to provide your services in some cities. Handypeople who wish to provide electrical, plumbing, or HVAC services may need a general contractor license to do so.

Local handyman license requirements will vary from city to city, and you must meet minimum work experience and/or education requirements to receive a general contractor license. You may also need to prove that you have General Liability insurance before you can begin work.

Discover more information on handyman license requirements in Texas.

Protecting Your Handyman Business

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* This information is a general guide only and does not take into account your objectives, financial situation or needs. Always check with your local licensing board when getting or renewing your contractor license to ensure you are meeting their current licensing requirements.

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