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How to get NYC Home Improvement Licenses

In order to run a home improvement contracting company in NYC you will be required to obtain the proper NYC home improvement licenses.

Who is required to have NYC Home Improvement Licenses

As described by the NYC Department of Consumer Affairs, “A person or business must have a Home Improvement Contractor license if engaged in the construction, repair, remodeling, or addition to any land or building used as a residence. This includes, but is not limited to, the construction, replacement, or improvement of basements, driveways, fences, garages, landscaping, patios, porches, sidewalks, swimming pools, terraces, and other improvements to structures or upon land that is next to a home or apartment building.”

Application Requirements for NYC Home Improvement Licenses

There are a few things you need to do before you even apply for your NYC Home improvement license.  Even though you don’t need these documents in order to process your application online, the DCA reserves the right to request and examine them.

Anyone who owns a sole proprietorship operating under a name other than your own must file a business/assumed name certificate with the clerk of the county.  For those who do business under a name other than your own and not under a DBA (doing business as) there is no need for a business certificate.  If you are in a partnership, you must file for a partnership certificate with the county clerk where you do business.  For Corporations, Limited Partnerships, Limited Liability Companies, or Limited Liability Partnerships you must register with the NY Dept. of state.  If you would like to check the status of this you may check at this website: If you happen to be doing business out of the state which you incorporated in you need to get a Certificate of Doing Business in Good Standing from your home state’s Secretary of State.

Once you take care of the previously mentioned requirements you may file for your license. The following documents are required by the state as outlined by the licensing website.

The first form to be filled out is the Basic License Application.  This can be done online or in person.  Second, you will need to have your Sales Tax Identification Number OR Certificate of Authority Application Confirmation Number.  The Sales Tax Identification Number is the 9, 10, or 11-digit number on your New York State Department of Taxation and Finance Certificate of Authority.

You will then add this number to the Basic License Application form. If you have not received your Certificate of Authority, enter the 6-digit confirmation number you received when you submitted the application for a Certificate of Authority.  A certificate of authority can be filled out online at  If you are more comfortable filling out a paper application then reach out to the organization via telephone at (518) 485-2889. It takes up to 6 weeks to receive this certificate.

Next you will need proof of your business address.  To do that you can use a Utility bill, dated within the last 90 days, a Current lease or deed in the name of either the business or individual listed on the license application, Current rent or mortgage bill, Current license or permit issued by New York State or another New York City government agency that shows your business address.  In addition, you will need to provide Proof of your Home Address.  This can be proven in a similar way by providing either a Utility bill, dated within the last 90 days, a Current lease or deed, a Current rent or mortgage bill a Driver’s license.

Workers compensation documentation is also required.  Proof of this can be in the form of an insurance certificate from a private carrier or the NY State insurance fund office or a certificate of Attestation of Exemption from the NY State Workers’ Compensation Board.  In addition to Workers Comp, you must find a company to provide bonds for licensees.

Following these documents, a roster of employees and a contractual compliance agreement will be needed.

Home Improvement Contractor Exam and Exam Fee

If you wish to get a home improvement license in NYC you need to pass the home improvement contractor exam and pay a fee.  The test is 30 questions and of them, 21 must be answered correctly.  The fee is 50 dollars.  You have 2 chances to pass.  Only one member of your organization needs to pass.

Fingerprints and Processing Fee

All sole proprietors, general partners, corporate officers, members, and all shareholders owning 10% or more of company stock must be fingerprinted at the DCA Licensing Center. The fee is 75 dollars and you must provide either a drivers licence, a government id, passport, green card, or federal employee ID card.

License Fee

The last step would be to pay your license fee.  Depending on when you file, your cost will vary.

License TermLicense Expiration DateIf You File Your Application Between These Dates:Your License Fee is:
2 yearsFebruary 28
Odd years
From March 1 in an odd year to August 31 in an odd year$100
From September 1 in an odd year to February 28 or 29 in an even year$75
From March 1 in an even year to August 31 in an even year$50
From September 1 in an even year to February 28 in an odd year$25


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