It may seem that all you need to do to start working as a home improvement contractor is to have the knowledge and a willingness to go into business for yourself. However, the state imposes several regulations on this type of work to protect you, as well as homeowners.
To help avoid possible issues with your work and the operation of your business, you should understand the state’s registration requirements.
According to the New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs, home improvement contractors must register with the state to legally perform work. The Contractor’s Registration Act applies to you if your business involves making or selling home improvements. This includes the construction, installation, repair or replacement of household interiors such as kitchens, bathrooms or garages. Landscapers who maintain yards typically do not have to register, but if you lay sod or plant flowers, shrubs or trees, the act does apply to your work.
To complete the registration requirement, you will fill out and submit an application form to the division. You may also have to submit proof you have secured and maintain commercial general liability insurance, among other documents. The state charges a fee of $110.
If applicable, you will need to comply with the registration requirement or face possible consequences. Depending on the circumstances, you may no longer receive municipal construction permits, as well as face civil or criminal penalties.
Running into issues with your registration will sometimes affect your ability to work, and thus, to provide for your family. Therefore, you may find it helpful to consider all your options, including working with a legal representative, to ensure you meet your obligations.