Do I need a North Carolina Contractor’s License?

Below is a complete list of trades North Carolina contractors typically engage in. Find out which trades require licensure and which don’t. If you click on a trade which requires a license, you’ll be able to see all information related to obtaining that specific license; this information will include the exams, reference books needed for the exams, application forms and anything else you’ll need. If you have any questions, please feel free to call us or leave us a comment.

TradeLicensed Required
Asbestos (RACM) Yes
Asbestos Removal (DHEC) No
Billboards/Signs1 No
Boring And Tunneling Yes
Building Yes
Cleaning Ducts2 No
Cleaning Storm Drains2 No
Cleaning Tanks2 No
Cleaning Water/Sewer Lines2 No
Cranes (Temporary, Assembly, Maintenance, And Transporting) No
Commercial Carpet Installation No
Commercial Refrigeration Yes
Communication Yes
Communication Towers3 No
Concrete Yes
Debris Removal No
Demolition (DHEC) No
Electric Sign Yes
Electrical- Ahead of Point Delivery Yes
Elevator Electrical Yes
Elevators (LLR-Elevators) No
Exterior Recreational Surfaces5 No
Exterior Siding (Commercial)6 No
Fencing (Except Concrete or Masonry) No
Fire Alarm/Low Voltage Yes
Fire Sprinkler Installation Yes
Fire Sprinkler Installation Residential Yes
Fire Suppression Systems4 No
Fuel Distribution Yes
Fuel Piping Yes
Grading And Excavating Yes
Groundwater Pump Electrical Yes
Hauling No
Heating Group 1 Class l Yes
Heating Group 1 Class ll Yes
Heating Group 2 Yes
Heating Group 3 Class l Yes
Heating Group 3 Class ll Yes
Highway Yes
Hood Systems8 No
Industrial Refrigeration Yes
Insulation Yes
Interior Construction Yes
Intermediate Electrical Yes
Irrigation (Except BackFlow Device) No
Land Clearing / Grubbing No
Landscaping No
Limited Electrical Yes
Low Voltage Cable Wiring and Installation (Except Boring & Tunneling) No
Non-Regulated Equipment (Assembly and Setting Only )7 No
Marine Construction Yes
Masonry Yes
Metal Erection Yes
Pedestrian Bridges9 No
Pile Driving (Unless Water Activity) No
Playground Equipment No
Plumbing Class l Yes
Plumbing Class ll Yes
Plumbing, Heating, And Air Conditioning Electrical Yes
Pressure Vessels (Except Boilers) No
Railroad Construction Yes
Residential Yes
Residential Dwelling (Single Family Detached) Electrical Yes
Roofing Yes
Scaffolding - Non Permanent No
Septic Tanks (DHEC) No
Service Refrigeration Yes
Swimming Pools Yes
Swimming Pools Electrical Yes
Transport Refrigeration Yes
Unlimited Electrical Yes
Water Lines And Sewer Lines Yes
Water Purification And Sewage Disposal Yes
Well Drilling (LLR-Environmental Board) No
Wind Turbine Yes
1-May require the “Electrical” license classification. Internal Electrical work to the sign/billboard does not require an “Electrical” license; however, the final connection to the power source does.
2-Cleaning only. Any disassembly/modification/repair/replacement requires licensure.
3-Communications Towers- require a “Structural Framing” license classification. If a building is needed in connection with the tower, a “Building” license classification is required. If a concrete slab or foundation is needed, a “Concrete classification is required.
4-Non-Water based systems only. Water based systems require licensure.
5-Asphalt or concrete surfaces require licensure.
6-If related repair work performed affects the structural integrity of the commercial structure, a “Building” license classification is required.
7-Connections to utilities, structural modifications and concrete work may require licensure.
8-Ductwork over $5,000 requires licensure.
9-Bridges erected over a depression or an obstruction such as water, highway or railway, having a track or passageway designed for carrying vehicular traffic weighing over 2000 pounds requires the “Bridges” license classification.


# Tommy Hales 2022-12-01 13:35
If I sub drywall from a gc then sub to a crew to hang/finish do I need a license? What about roofing or painting?
# Aengels G. 2023-02-13 13:27
Hello Tommy,
The person who is a General Contractor can use their GC license and subcontract other trades such as Roofing. Whoever is subcontracted must have their trade's contractor license.
# Phillip Murray 2023-02-13 11:05 Reply
# Aengels G. 2023-02-13 13:40
Hello Phillip,
We are a school and bookstore, that has the books and classes to prepare you to pass the trade and business exams.
If you have any questions or concerns please feel free to contact us.
# James Morris 2023-07-12 10:38
I install paint booths and get City, County permits, and Fire Marshall approvals for installation. I am not GC sometimes work with GC. Use all licensed contractors for electrical, mechanical, and fire suppression. Do I need to have a GC license now, never have in the past. I am also a mechanical engineer. Thanks, Jim
# Claudia Soto 2023-07-12 15:40
Hello James,
If you are looking to do the scope of work that includes:
-parking decks
-all site work
-grading and paving of parking lots
-storm drainage
-retaining / screen walls
-hardware and accessory structures
-indoor and outdoor recreational facilities, including natural and artificial surface athletic fields, running tracks, bleachers, and seating. We do recommend you obtain North Carolina Building Contractor License. If you are looking to obtain a North Carolina NASCLA© General Contractor License, you must pass the Commercial General Building NASCLA© exam. You will not need to obtain a license if you only want to subcontract. Down below, I will provide you with the links to the contact information for the State of North Carolina and the North Carolina Building Contractor License for more information on the books and classes we offer to prepare you for the required exams.

Add comment