How to get your Contractors License in Florida!! *Step by Step*

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hey there my name is Jesse Lane I've

been a certified contractor here in

Florida since I was 22 years old I

started with my CBC license which I can

explain more about that in a second

and last year I just passed my CGC exam

so I'm now a certified general

contractor I have been through the

rigorous testing the studying of course

and the licensure application etc twice

now and so I'm going to share with you

in this video the nuts and bolts of how

to actually do this here in Florida so

if you're into this kind of thing and

you want to get your Florida state

certified contractor's license then stay

tuned before we start I want to clarify

one thing there's actually two different

types of contractors here in Florida

there's a certified contractor and

there's a registered contractor I'm

going to be showing you the certified

contractor as that means you can do work

statewide versus only being licensed as

a registered contractor which means

you're only licensed in that County so

this video is going to be for these

certified contractors out there that

want to get their certified contractors

license now to further break this down

there's actually three different types

of certified contractor there's a

certified residential contractor

certified building contractor sort of a

general contractor a residential

contractor can only do work on

residential homes up to two stories so a

residential contractor can't build any

multifamily or anything above two

stories a building contractor can do

residential work but also commercial

work up to three stories even if there's

an existing four-story building and the

and the building contractor wants to

work on that he actually can't do any

structural renovations on that

four-story building unless it's three

stories or under and then of course the

top-tier general contractor is unlimited

to this scope that you can do so you can

build skyscrapers residential commercial

industrial anything like that with no

limit on the size of project he did

accomplish this I saw a lot of videos on

here that I just like either selling you

an exam prep course or really not giving

you the full bit of information so

that's my goal with this video the only

thing I ask in return is that you


this channel if you're not already and

leave a little thumbs up down below and

leave a comment of course that really

helps and watch the whole video through

ok there's like 4 things you have to do

but it would really help me and my

little baby channel out a lot ok so

let's get started

with Stefan number 1 ok so step number

one is to research the requirements that

you're actually gonna need to have in

place before you even think about taking

this test because without these

requirements you could pass a test and

still not be licensed so I have got my

laptop here and I've detailed everything

out and I'm gonna tell you right here

right now what exactly you need to do so

of course the first thing is to obtain a

passing score of 70% or more on all

three parts of this contractor's exam so

the contractors test is actually broken

out into three different parts there's

the business and finance section there's

the contract administration and there's

also the project management so there's

three different parts that you'll need

to pass the three different tests that

make up the contractor's exam so there's

the Business and Finance and then the

contract administration and project

management those are taken on the same

day those are about four hours and 45

minutes each there'll be a lunch in

between this is lunch right here and

then your business and finance that is

about a six and a half hour test so

these are gonna be two separate testing

days I personally took the business in

finance section first it doesn't matter

what you take first now super good news

you can actually take all three of these

tests on the computer at Pearson VUE as

of 2018 I think it was like August 2018

but before then like when I took it four

years ago it was drive to Tallahassee or

Orlando but I went to Tallahassee and

you have to take a paper test and then

you can't even schedule like say you

fail you can't even schedule your test

for another couple months because they

only would schedule those four six times

a year I believe but that's all in the

past you can now do it unlimited times

as long as you pass the test within four

years of your initial exam date so the

next part of the requirements are of

course paying the applicable fees to

Pearson VUE I think it's $80 a test

something like that

that's about 135 dollars for the


to see ILB so it's a fairly minimal cost

the biggest cost of this whole thing is

gonna be your books the next requirement

is you must be 18 or older so hopefully

you're 18 or older that's not a hard one

unless you're not 18 or older next you

must be of good moral character what

does this mean

no criminal crazy background you can't

be currently incarcerated you can't have

like crazy you know legal things

happening I'm not a legal adviser of

course so you might need to research

this if you do something going on but

hopefully it won't be a problem for you

the next one is you must demonstrate

financial responsibility so you have to

have a credit score of 660 or higher and

if you don't have credit scores 660 or

higher you can actually go to a 14-hour

financial responsibility course and I

think that they'll work with you a

little bit as long as you complete that

course but you can talk to see ILB about

that one the next thing on the

requirements is you must have workers

compensation or an exemption it's easy

to apply for an exemption I think it's

like $150 or something don't quote me

but I've done that years back and you

just renew it every year and it exempts

you as the owner of a business that you

don't have to have workers comp on

yourself of course you still need to

have workers comp on your employees but

you can get exempt as the owner there's

Jake's tail the next thing is you must

have a general liability insurance

policy for a let me read these notes

you're gonna go for general or building

contractor you need to have three

hundred thousand dollars of public

liability and fifty thousand dollars of

property damage if you're just going for

a residential contractor you need to

have a hundred thousand public liability

and twenty-five thousand property damage

policy and by the way any business needs

general liability so you're gonna have

to have this anyway just a side note so

okay the next this next one is the

biggest one a lot of people cannot get

their general contractor's license there

any certified contractors license

because of the experience requirements

and so here are the options that they

give you you can either have a four-year

construction related degree and one year

experience or one year experience as a

foreman or supervisor and not less than

three years of credits from an

accredited college level courses or one

year experience as a worker

one year experience as a foreman and two

years of credits from an accredited

college level courses or two years

experience as a worker one year

experience as a foreman and one year of

credits from accredited college level

courses or four years experience as a

worker or foreman of which at least one

year must have been a foreman or

supervisor and there's also some

benefits if you were in the military you

know Navy stuff like that they actually

will the credit that as part of it as

long as you have some construction

experience and then lastly there's the

upgrade method which if you have held a

residential or a building contractors

license for more than four years which

is actually how I got my general

contractor's license because I've had my

building contractors license for four

years and so I passed the GC test and

just applied for my GC license because

of my CBC holding that for four years

and quick sidenote if you look in the

description below I'm actually gonna put

a link to a Dropbox file which has all

the documents that you're gonna need and

links to things that I reference here in

this video so definitely check that out

it's a great resource that I've put

together for you so step number one was

the biggest one we just want to make

sure that you've got everything that you

need let's just say that you have every

other requirement other than maybe one

thing or something like that then you'll

you'll have that experience built up in

the next two years you can start

studying and even pass your test I

believe you just can't apply for the

license until you have those things

built up because remember you have four

years from the initial exam scheduled

date to you know apply for your

certified contractor's license okay step

number one was the biggest one we wanted

to really make sure that you had every

requirement in place but step number two

is apply for an exam prep class I cannot

accentuate this enough you must apply

for an exam prep class if you don't

you're just gonna miss out on so many

things that they had to offer that

you're just not gonna know it would've

been like how just stuff that because

this this isn't about you have to

realize that even if you have a

background and a lots of experience in

construction this has nothing to do with

that it will help a little bit but most

what this test is a

about what they're looking for this is

completely different what CIL bee is

actually looking for the construction

industry licensing board is your

competency and ability to retain and

process information and then find that

information in these books that is how

you're gonna pass this test the exam

prep courses are gonna give you the math

formulas the tabbing the highlighting

what you're gonna go over in one quick

second and everything that you're going

to need to know to be successful in

passing this test I personally went to

triple-a construction school which is

linked to them is also in the

description Triple A construction school

a a construction school been around for

over three decades who have helped

thousands pass to say examination and we

can certainly help you there here off

Atlantic Boulevard in Jacksonville

Florida and like in the Arlington area

but there's tons across Florida wherever

you live I'm sure just Google

Contractors exam prep courses and tons

of people want to take your money for

that now step number three is to get the

books of course you want to get the

right books but the exam prep course is

gonna steer you towards the right books

there's about 18 19 20 books that you're

gonna need to get you can buy these

anywhere as long as are the right books

but I just recommend just going to the

exam prep course if it's in person or

online and person would be better but

they'll guide you and give you a whole

list of every book that you're going to

need to purchase ok now speaking of

books obviously you can see my books

here I'm gonna show you a snippet of how

I tabbed and highlighted my books for

success check this out okay for example

this is principles and practices of

commercial construction turn off

autofocus every tab is completely

readable and referenceable

auto focus back on auto focus saves my

life thank you

canon you're amazing you make great

cameras okay so this is this is exactly

how I did my books the most important

thing here is to write on both sides of

the tabs you see how dang see how I can

read all the tabs no matter where in the

book I am let's say I get a question I

start scanning through the top like this

I started scanning through the tabs like

this but then once I open the book the

point is I can see every other tab

that I've written because I've written

on both sides of the tab the next thing

is to do your tabs in a way to where you

start at the top at the top left that's

what I did and then one in a row until

you go all the way around and then flip

the tab upside down and then put the row

on the bottom that's what I did

sometimes they'll get a little bit bent

but you just deal with it and then you

start back up at the top so that's how

focus so that's how I have these gaps

and the tabs aren't hiding behind each

other I saw so many I was the only guy

in class that did it this way everyone

else had all these tabs that were pretty

much hidden behind each other because

they didn't pre-plan so so this is the

process I literally bought this thing on

Amazon because these dang it so I could

listen to these things because that

Triple A construction school is

extremely old school but rob has been

given these contractors lessons for like

30 years and he runs you through

everything that you need to highlight in

these books I start on page one and you

highlight everything he says on your

first pass through the book and then you

go back through highlight by highlight

understand where things are in the book

and then start placing your tabs based

on what the content of that page is

saying let's say for example here's my

page on all the different soil types it

says its soil types and then fill layers

six inches Shelby tube soil tests

boundary surveys all kinds of stuff like


that is related to this section of the

book and so once you're you've done that

then you start with the practice test is

about 600 practice questions in one book

that they sell and then here's all the

practice tests from the actual courses

in person you can go through and then

you test your ability to reference

information about you know which book is

it is the first thing you say and then

how do I find it within that book once

you've narrowed that down and you'll be

wrong a lot until you start being right

and then you'll know you're ready to

take the test so what they're looking

for is can you find a small bit of

seemingly hidden information in a large

stack of

books that's the key so I'd recommend

taking at least four to six months or so

of like hardcore studying to really get

this thing under your belt okay let's

move on to step number five got really

bright in here so step number five is of

course to schedule and then of course

take the test and pass the test again

you need a 70% passing score on all

three portions again that's business and

finance and contract administration and

project management are there in that

other day and you can schedule your

Florida exam at Florida exam comm it's

really that simple and you'll get a call

from Pearson VUE and you'll go there to

your local Pearson VUE and you'll take

the test and you'll grab lunch and then

you'll hopefully pass and they literally

give you your results just right there

on the spot Jake's enjoying this

Saturday taking the test really isn't

that bad you just have to really bring

some snacks bring a banana and some

granola bars in a bottle of water make

sure you have everything you need

make sure your brain is just prepped and

prepared to think hard right so my first

test I think I got like a 75 74

something like that seventy six four

years ago this last time I got an 85

percent and I studied since like January

of 2018 and then I took the test I

believe around August of 2018 so a bunch

of months of studying had a lot of it

under my belt was helping people in

class so you kind of need to get to that

point of you just know every answer

you're like I know that's principles and

practices that's Walker's that's design

and control of concrete mixtures and

that's you know the Florida codebook

residential versus building and you know

there's different books there's 20 books

that you have to just know the AIA

documents and the builders guide to

accounting and just different things

that there's a lot of stuff that you

probably will never use again in your

life like I said don't rely on your

previous construction knowledge it's not

going to get you passed the test what's

gonna get you passed the test is knowing

these books back and forth and knowing

where to find the information step

number six once you pass submit your

application to the

see ILB construction industry licensing

board which is just a offshoot of the

DBPR which is the Department of Business

and Professional Regulation those are

the people that are going to decide

whether or not to give you a license do

you meet all the requirements did you

pass the test it's really that simple

now the course that you go to like

triple a construction school they will

do all of this for you they'll submit it

you can also submit it yourself if you

like or check out licenses etc that's

they're a great company they charge you

a little bit to just gather all the

information and stuff but they they put

a nice package together and make sure

that you get approved so I checked them

out of course all these links will be in

the description and step number seven is

to enjoy your new license you can really

do well in this industry always treat

your clients with utmost respect produce

quality projects you will be a success

if you value these things and you have

integrity contractors get a bad rap

please do not give the contracting

industry of bad rep I mean you can be an

amazing amazing contractor I believe in


thanks for watching number subscribe

like all that good stuff and I'll see

you in a future video of course if you

have any questions or if you feel like I

miss anything out which I probably did

but I think they got most of the

information you could figure it out fill

in the gaps but leave a comment below

and I'll see you soon