Residential and General Contractors Frequently Asked Questions
Residential and General Contractors FAQ
Yes. To perform (or offer to perform) residential or general contractor services for compensation in Georgia, you must be licensed in accordance with the laws and rules that regulate this profession. You may view relevant laws and rules at the following link: Residential and General Contractors Rules and Regulations | Georgia Secretary of State (ga.gov).
However, licenses are not required to perform work that qualifies as a specialty trade. See more details here: (Residential and General Contractor Exemptions | Georgia Secretary of State (ga.gov).
Georgia does not require that you hold a license to build your own home; however, check with your local authority having jurisdiction to ensure you comply with all required local building codes and regulations.
Licensure in Georgia as a Residential or General Contractor can be obtained by completing the necessary application and passing the required examinations. All application forms are available to download/print on our website with complete instructions.
Once your application is received and passes initial analyst review, it will be submitted for consideration by the Board. The Board will either approve you to sit for the exam, deny your application, or request additional information for review. Further instructions are provided to you when a decision is reached.
A denial letter is a written notice sent to an applicant that has not met the requirements for licensure. The notice will include the reason for the denial and information on how to appeal.
Georgia offers reciprocity for Unlimited General Contractors with the following states:
- North Carolina
Georgia offers reciprocity for Residential Basic Contractors with the following states:
- South Carolina
The minimum requirements for reciprocity for any of the states listed above are:
- Your license was obtained by passing the necessary exams in your state
- You are a resident of or your business was chartered in the state where you hold your license
- Your license has been active for a minimum of 3 years with no disciplinary actions based on law violation
Further details regarding reciprocity requirements are provided on the application forms.
You may apply by Prior Approval if you currently hold (or have previously held) a license of the same type.
Further details regarding the requirements are provided on the application forms.
Once the Board approves you to sit for the exam, you’ll receive an Exam Approval Letter with instructions on registering through our testing vendor, PSI. Exam approval letters are valid for one year.
For more information about our testing vendor, visit www.PSIOnline.com.
ADA Accommodations: For information regarding accommodations, see the following link: ADA Accommodations Form.
Veteran’s Preference Points: For information regarding VPP, see the following link: PLBVeteransInfo.pdf (ga.gov).
Once approved by the Board, you are allowed 2 exam sittings within a one-year period. If you do not pass either exam in 2 sittings, you will be required to wait one year from your most recent failure to reapply to be approved for additional sittings of the same exam(s). Further instructions will be provided via correspondence from the Board.
The minimum net worth requirements for each category are as follows:
- Residential Basic - $25k
- Residential Light Commercial - $25k
- General Contractor - $150k
- General Contractor Limited Tier - $25k
See the licensure comparison chart: 49 Reference - Licensure Comparison Chart.pdf (ga.gov).
Insurance is a condition of applying for and maintaining licensure. General Liability requirements for each category are as follows:
- Residential Basic - $300k per occurrence
- Residential Light Commercial - $500k per occurrence
- General Contractor - $500k per occurrence
- General Contractor Limited Tier - $500k per occurrence
Worker’s Compensation insurance in Georgia is only required if you have 3 or more employees. See the licensure comparison chart: 49 Reference - Licensure Comparison Chart.pdf (ga.gov).
An individual contractor may only perform work under their name or a DBA/sole proprietorship. In other words, they are not affiliated with a registered business organization.
A Qualifying Agent performs work on behalf of a business organization (such as a corporation, LLC, LLLP, LP, business trust, joint venture, or other legal entity) that is registered with the Georgia Corporations Division (Georgia Corporations Division (ga.gov)).
Yes, multiple people can serve as qualifying agents for one company.
Yes, a person can serve as a qualifying agent for more than one company.
NOTE: a new qualifying agent application will be required for each additional company.
To report disaffiliation with a company, submit a completed and notarized notice of disaffiliation (49 Form - Disaffiliation of Qualifying Agent.pdf).
You must notify the Board within 30 days of termination, after which the associated company will have 120 days to complete any open contracts before the license number becomes inactive. Please see Board Rule 553-11-.02 for more details.
Different license types are required depending on the type of building/work you intend to perform. To review the breakdown of all four licensure categories, please see the licensure comparison chart: 49 Reference - Licensure Comparison Chart.pdf (ga.gov).
General Contractor Limited Tier is the only category with a $1 Million per project limitation. See the licensure comparison chart: 49 Reference - Licensure Comparison Chart.pdf (ga.gov)
An SVD is a certifiable photo identification such as a driver’s license or passport.
The complete list of approved Secure and Verifiable Documents may be found at the following address: List of Acceptable SVDs.
General Contractors are NOT required to complete Continuing Education.
Residential Contractors must complete Continuing Education (3 hours per year for Residential Basic and 6 hours per year for Residential Light Commercial).
Any contracting company registered with the Georgia Corporations Division intending to perform work in Georgia must have at least one licensed qualifying agent. Therefore, you must submit a completed qualifying agent application for the newly created company.
A request to change your company’s name must be completed through the Georgia Corporations Division. The name change of the business organization must then be reported to the Board within 45 days by completing the appropriate form (49 Form - Change of Name or Address for a Company.pdf (ga.gov).) and submitting a copy of the Certificate of Amendment from the Georgia Corporations Division.
A change in the structure of the business organization (e.g., ABC, Inc. to ABC, LLC) is not considered a name change, and a new application will be required (see Board Rule 553-11-01 (c).
You will find information, including where and how to submit your complaint, at the following link: How To Submit A Complaint | Georgia Secretary of State (ga.gov).