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Texas Contract Licensing - The Basic Requirements and Rules

In Texas, there are different requirements for each type of contractor, but the general rules and processes are fairly similar across the board. Figuring out whether you need a contractor license in Texas depends on your role and the type of work that you do, as well as other factors. And of course, even if licensing isn't required, it could benefit you to have it.

Who Needs a Texas Contractor License?

Texas does not require all people working in construction trades to carry a contractor license. However, that depends on the exact trade and where in the state you do business. As a general rule, handymen, builders, and general contractors are not required to have a license. You may have additional paperwork to complete, but a license isn't necessarily a must

All other trades and specialties will require a Texas contractor license, including plumbers, electricians, HVAC specialists, and so forth. They will need to pass a state test and meet certain educational requirements, along with submitting the necessary paperwork. Others who need a license include:
* Well drillers
* Fire sprinkler installers
* Mold remediation contractors
* Elevator and escalator installation companies

So, if you don't find yourself on this list, you may not be required to provide contractor licensing proof in order to work in your field.

How to Get Licensed

Every business in the state must register with the state and/or county where they reside. This depends on the structure of the business. Those who are not general contractors, handymen, or home improvement specialists will need to get a license by following the guidelines set forth by the state.

Electrical Contractors

There are 11 types of licenses for electricians working in the state. Job requirements and other criteria must be met, including things like on-the-job training. Then, applications will be filled out and fees will be paid. All applications are sent to and processed by the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation.

Once the application is submitted, the contractor will then complete a test and then be given their license to operate in the state.

Plumbing Contractors

There are four types of plumbing licenses that you can get in Texas. Each has its own requirements, and all licensing is handled by the Texas State Board of Plumbing Examiners. You will need a Responsible Master Plumber's license to work independently, which comes with its own requirements. You will also have to submit a completed application, licensing fee (currently $345), and necessary supporting documents.

Protect Yourself and Your Business

The Texas Department of Licensing and Registration also manages licensing for HVAC contractors. This license requires work hours of experience, educational training, and a completed application with a licensing fee. Completed applications will be contacted by the state and the exam will be offered. Those who pass the exam will need to meet HVAC insurance requirements to get properly licensed.

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