New Jersey is a great place to work as a general contractor. The Garden State offers contractors the opportunity to build a thriving business in a growing economy. But before you start drawing up business plans, you will need to learn and follow New Jersey’s steps for how to become a general contractor.
A Guide for How to Become a General Contractor in NJ
First, you will have to register with the Department of Labor and Workforce Development. There, you will apply for a Contractor Registration Certificate. This document, which costs $300, is valid for one year.
Filling out Registration Forms
Next, you will want to download an application packet from the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs. It includes a handy FAQ that will answer many common application questions.
When you are ready, fill out every page of the application form, including the disclosure page. Any missed information could delay the application process.
In order to qualify, you must provide a certificate of General Liability Insurance of at least $500,000 per occurrence. The application packet, which outlines how to become a general contractor in New Jersey, has detailed instructions on every step you need to follow.
You also must establish what type of business model you plan to operate under. For example, if you choose sole proprietorship, Consumer Affairs will need a copy of your Business Trade Name Certificate. Other business models require different documentation.
You must also sign a disclosure agreement in which you detail the past criminal violations of anyone who owns more than 10 percent of your business.
Applications must be mailed to:
Department of Consumer Affairs
Regulated Business Section
124 Halsey Street
Newark, New Jersey 07101
The Waiting Period
It may take as long as six weeks to learn whether you have been accepted to receive a New Jersey contractors registration certificate. In the meantime, you can watch out for updates on the Consumer Affairs website.
Information about your License
If your license is granted, you will be mailed a certificate. You must display this visibly in your place of work. With your certificate, you will also receive a registration number. It must be included on your advertisements, business vehicles or any business-related document and contracts.
A New Jersey contractors registration is valid for one year. It expires on December 31. Renewal is required prior to this deadline.
Now that you know how to become a general contractor in New Jersey, it’s time to start thinking about insurance coverages, like surety bonds and worker’s compensation. Once you become a fully insured and licensed contractor, the sky is the limit.