Florida Building Contractor License
A Florida Building Contractor (CBC) means a contractor whose services are limited to construction of commercial buildings and single-dwelling or multiple-dwelling residential buildings, which do not exceed three stories in height, and accessory use structures in connection therewith or a contractor whose services are limited to remodeling, repair, or improvement of any size building if the services do not affect the structural members of the building. This is the correct license for those contractors wishing to build new residential and commercial structures up to three-stories. If you are a contractor engaged in the construction of new structures higher than three-stories (high-rise buildings) you need a Florida General Contractor's License (CGC) instead. The Florida Building Contractor's License allows contractors to remodel any type of residential or commercial unit, regardless of height (the 3-story limitation only applies to structural work and new construction, not to non-structural remodeling work). If your scope of operation is strictly limited to new residential construction and remodeling, you only need a Florida Residential Contractor's License (CRC).
Below are some of the requirements needed to become a licensed Building Contractor in the State of Florida:
Background and Insurance
- Age: Must be at least 18 years of age.
- Examination: Must take and pass the state certification examinations (Building Contract Administration and Building Project Management). Please note that the application process cannot be started until the exams are taken and passing scores are obtained.
- Financial / Credit: Applicants will need to provide proof of financial stability and responsibility by submitting personal credit reports. Credit reports must include a FICO derived credit score and indicate that local, state, and federal records have been searched. Credit report containing a credit score (FICO derived) on the applicant from a nationally recognized credit reporting agency, which includes a public records statement that records have been checked at local, state, and federal levels. If the credit score is below 660 (FICO derived) applicant must submit a bond or irrevocable letter of credit. Note that Fifty percent (50%) of the bond or letter of credit requirement may be met by completion of a 14-hour financial responsibility course.
- Fingerprints: An applicant must have a background check as part of the licensing process.
- Insurance: Applicants are required to attest that they have obtained public liability and property damage insurance in the amounts determined by Board rule. Applicants are also required to obtain workers' compensation insurance or obtain an exemption from worker’s compensation insurance within 30 days of issuance of their license. To download the different application forms related to the Building Contractor’s License, you may visit the Florida Construction Industry Licensing Board’s site.
Ways to Prove Your Experience
- Field Experience and Education: A person will qualify for a Certified Building Contractor’s license by meeting one of the following requirements.
- Effective July 1, 2020, exam candidates who have received a baccalaureate degree in building construction from an accredited 4-year college, or a related degree as approved by board rule, and have a GPA of 3.0 or higher are exempt from having to take the trade knowledge portion of the exam. You will be required to affirm that you qualify for this exemption later in this application. You will only be required to register for the Business and Finance exam.
- Four-year construction-related degree from an accredited college (equivalent to three years’ experience) and one year proved experience applicable to the category for which you are applying.
- One year experience as a foreman and not less than three years of credits from accredited college-level courses.
- One year experience as a worker, one-year experience as a foreman, and two years of credits from accredited college-level courses.
- Two years’ experience as a worker, one year experience as a foreman, and one year of credits from accredited college-level courses.
- Four years’ experience as a worker or foreman of which at least one year must have been as a foreman.
- “Upgrade Method”: A certified residential contractor holding an active current license for a minimum of 3 yrs does not need to meet any other experience requirements.
Areas of Trade in which you Need Experience
- Foundation/Slabs greater than 20,000 sqft.
- Masonry walls
- Steel erection
- Precast concrete structures
- Column erection
- Formwork for structural reinforced concrete
- Elevated slabs
- A veteran will qualify for a certified license by meeting one of the following:
- Three years of military service and one year experience as a foreman applicable to the category for which you are applying.
- Two years of military service, one year experience as a foreman, and one year experience as a worker or foreman applicable to the category for which you are applying.
- One year of military service, one year experience as a foreman, and two years experience as a worker or foreman applicable to the category for which you are applying.
Florida Building Contractor Exams
The Florida Building Contractor Examination in Florida consists of a Business and Finance test, as well as a Trade Test. The Trade test is divided into two sections; the morning section of the trade test is known as the Contract Administration exam, while the afternoon section of the Trade test is known as the Project Management exam. It is possible to pass one and fail the other but both sections must eventually be passed (along with the business and finance test) in order to satisfy the State's academic requirements. Do not sign up to take your exams until you obtain your books and begin studying for them.
Building Contract Administration Exam
Part 1 of Trade Exam | This is an open book test with 50 questions which lasts 4 hours and 45 minutes (morning session). The subjects involved are: Pre-construction Activities, Project Contracts, Obtaining Licenses, Permits and Approvals, Construction Procedures, and Operations.
Building Project Management Exam
Part 2 of Trade Exam | This is an open book test with 50 questions which also lasts 4 hours and 45 minutes (afternoon session). The subjects involved are Construction Methods, Materials, Tools, and Equipment; Safety; and Reading Plans and Specifications.
Business and Finance Exam
This is a separate test that lasts 6.5 hours and contains 120 questions. Some of the subjects included in this test are: Establishing the Contracting Business, Managing Administrative Duties, Managing Trade Operations, Conducting Accounting Functions, Managing Human Resources, and complying with Government Regulations.
Florida Building Contractor Classes
You can take Building Contractor Classes in Tampa, Fort Myers, Orlando, Miami, or Online. You can sign up for your classes at any time and receive access to lecture videos, practice questions, tabbing and highlighting instructions, as well as to step-by-step explanations on how to solve typical Building Contractor Exam problems. The Building Contractor Classes prepare you for the trade and business exams. Florida Building Contractor Testing Schedule). You must pass all exams before applying for the Building Contractor’s License in Florida. To sign up for the Florida Building Contractor classes, simply click on the "enroll" button below and checkout; this will allow you to receive immediate access to the Florida Building Contractor Classes online, and will also enable you to attend in-person Exam Prep classes. All students have access to both online and in-person classes for an unlimited amount of time (until passing all the Florida Building Contractor exams needed to get the Building license!). The in-person classes are not mandatory and can be taken at the student's discretion. For a list of upcoming classes for the Florida Building Contractor Exams click on the link within the course description below.
Login credentials emailed upon enrollment
Unlimited access (no time limits)
Step-by-step solutions to math problems
Login credentials emailed upon enrollment
Unlimited access (no time limits)
Step-by-step solutions to math problems
Florida Building Contractor Books
The set of books includes all required references for both the Building and Business and Finance exams. Orders placed before 2 PM are shipped the same day via UPS and a tracking number is emailed before 3 PM.
FLORIDA BUILDING - BOOK SET WITHOUT TABS INCLUDES ALL BOOKS FOR TRADE AND BUSINESS EXAMS
FLORIDA BUILDING - BOOK SET WITH TABS INCLUDES ALL BOOKS FOR TRADE AND BUSINESS EXAMS
If you want to buy individual books or tabs rather than the package you may click on the links below or visit our Books for the General-Building Contractor Exam page, it will be easier to pick and choose what you need and add the items to your cart (you can do so on that single page).
List of Books for the Building Contractor Trade Exams
The trade exams for Building Contracting are Contract Administration and Project Management. The exact same list of books is used for both of them.
- Florida Building Code - Building
Florida Building Code is the primary source for building code compliance in Florida.
- Florida Building Code - Accessibility
The Florida Accessibility Code (outlines the code requirements for compliance with the ADA (Americans with Disabilities Act) as it relates to the construction of public buildings and structures. Samples of its content include specifications on the construction of handicapped-accessible restrooms, as well as requirements of the construction of wheel chair ramps.
- Florida Building Code - Residential
The Residential Code is the primary resource for code compliance for single and multi-family dwelling construction in Florida.
- Florida Building Code - Existing Building
The Florida Existing Building Code is the primary code reference for the remodeling and restoration of existing buildings in FL.
- Florida Building Code - Energy Conservation
The Florida Energy Conservation Code is the current and primary source of code compliance for mechanical contractors and builders. This book used to be Chapter 13 of the Florida Building Code in prior code editions (before it was published separately).
- Design and Control of Concrete Mixtures
Many advances have been made in concrete technology over the decades ranging from new materials and testing methods to improved concrete properties and construction practices. Concrete construction today follows a mantra of quicker, stronger, more durable, more resilient, and more sustainable. That story is proudly displayed within the pages of this centennial edition of Design and Control of Concrete Mixtures.
- Placing Reinforcing Bars
Placing Reinforcing Bars covers all aspects of concrete reinforcement.
- Principles and Practices of Commercial Construction
Principles and Practices of Commercial Construction cover all aspects of the building process with a focus on civil structures and high-rise buildings.
- A201 General Conditions of the Contract for Construction
The A201 is published by the AIA and establishes the general conditions of the contract for construction.
- A401 Standard Form of Agreement between Contractor Subcontractor
Please beware of companies selling photocopies of AIA documents. You will not be allowed to use photocopies during testing. If you suspect a company of engaging in this illegal practice, please notify the publisher.
- A701, Instructions for Bidders
Please beware of companies selling photocopies of AIA documents. You will not be allowed to use photocopies during testing. If you suspect a company of engaging in this illegal practice, please email the publisher
- Builder's Guide to Accounting
Builder's Guide to Accounting is used for the Business and Finance contractor exam in Florida.
- Walker's Building Estimator's Reference Book The Building Estimator's Reference Book is an important reference used for estimating and as a reference for contractor exams.
- CFR (OSHA) Tile 29 Part 1926
OSHA (CFR 29 Part 1926) is the leading safety reference in the construction industry covering all aspects of construction.
- Florida Contractor's Manual
The Florida Contractor's Manual is used as one of the references for the Business and Finance exam.
- Specifications for the Application and Finishing of Gypsum Panel Products, GA-216
This illustrated book gives recommendations for the proper installation and finishing of gypsum board.
- Energy Efficient Building Construction in Florida
This publication by the University of Florida covers all aspects of energy-efficient construction in Florida.
- Building Component Safety Information Handling, Installing, and Bracing Metal Plate Connected Wood Trusses, HIB-91
This book covers all aspects of the handling and installation of metal plate-connected wood trusses. It is a great reference for carpenters and builders.
- Florida Statutes Chapter 455
Business and Professional Regulation: General Provisions) contains regulation directly impacting the licensing process of contractors in the State of Florida.
Starting January 1st, 2020, these books will NOT be allowed in the testing room but will be tested on.
Please note that A201, A401, A701, Builder's Guide to Accounting, and Florida Contractors Manual are required for both the business and the trade exams. Florida Statutes 455 is the only book that is used exclusively on the Business and Finance Exam. If you only need the business books, you can buy them by visiting our Business and Finance Exam in Florida page.