If the project costs $30,000 or more, you will need a license before submitting a bid.

  1. Submit an application to the licensing board & meet the following requirements:
  2. Be at least 18 years old
  3. Possess good moral character, as determined by the board
  4. Provide evidence of financial responsibility, as determined by the board
  5. Submit the appropriate application fee
    • Limited: $75
    • Intermediate: $100
    • Unlimited: $125
  6. Pass the North Carolina contractor exams

Here is the Residential Building Contractor exam content.  The State test through PSI contains 90 questions taken randomly from a pool of over 1,000 questions.  You will have 210 minutes and must get 70% or higher to pass.  Our course covers ALL areas thoroughly:

  • Site Work, Footings, and Foundations (12 questions)
  • Concrete and Concrete Reinforcements (10 questions)
  • Masonry (7 questions)
  • Carpentry (11 questions)
  • Associated Constructions Trades, Including Energy Conservation and Dry Wall (8 questions)
  • Roofing (6 questions)
  • Estimating, Plan Reading and General Residential Code Requirements (16 questions)
  • Osha Safety (4 questions)
  • Licensing and Business and Law (10 questions)
  • Special Construction Zones (wind and coastal) and Erosion and Sedimentation Control (6 questions)

Here is the Building Contractor exam content. The State test through PSI contains 90 questions taken randomly from a pool of over 1,000 questions.  You will have 180 minutes and must get 70% or higher to pass.Our course covers All areas thoroughly:

  • Sitework (6 questions)
  • Concrete (15 questions)’
  • Masonry (6 questions)
  • Metals (15 questions)
  • Carpentry (7 questions)
  • Roofing (6 questions)
  • Associated Trades (3 questions)
  • Business and law (7 questions)
  • Safety (4 questions)
  • Estimating, Plan reading and general Building Code Requirements (14 questions)
  • One Call (2 questions)
  • Erosion and Sedimentation Control (2 questions)
  • Licensing (2 questions)
  • Liens (1 question)

As of January 1st, 2020 North Carolina contractors must complete a business & law exam.

The exam will consist of 40 Questions. You must score at least 70% pass and you will be allowed 90 minutes to complete the exam. The exam is open book - you may bring your copy of Contractor’s Guide to Business, Law and Project Management - North Carolina General Contractors Edition, 2019.

Subject Area & # of Items

  • Erosion and Sedimentation Control 3
  • Licensing 21
  • Subcontractor's Pay Requirements 3
  • Liens and Bonds 8
  • One Call 5

The Residential Contractor license is for one and two family dwellings, whereas the Building Contractor license is for commercial, industrial, institutional and residential building.


Yes! When you pass the NASCLA Accredited Examination for Commercial General Building Contractors, you will be listed in the NASCLA National Examination Database. This NASCLA exam preparation course is for Commercial General Contractors and is accepted in AL, AR, GA, LA, MS, NV, NC, OR, SC, TN, UT, US Virgin Islands, VA, and WV. You may also need to take each states’ specific business/law/project management exam in addition to the NASCLA exam.



LIMITED – Up to $500,000.00 on any single project
INTERMEDIATE – Up to $1,000,000.00 on any single project
UNLIMITED – Not restricted as to the value of any single project


Public Utilities
 – (includes all of the above classifications)


A qualifying examination is not an occupational license and does not grant the holder of such examination the authority to practice general contracting. Individuals may be licensed by their personal examinations or the examination of a responsible managing employee. Partnerships and corporations are licensed by examination of a responsible managing officer or
member of the personnel of the applicant. If the qualifying party leaves, however, the licensee must replace the qualifying party within ninety (90) days or the license is canceled.

Licensees should not allow unlicensed persons, firms or corporations to use the general contractor’s license with the licensee’s permission. Although licensed general contractors may have an ownership interest in an unlicensed entity, the unlicensed contractor may not use a general contractor’s license for any reason. Violators of the general contractor laws
and regulations may be disciplined by the Licensing Board for General Contractors for allowing the use of a license by an unlicensed person or other entities. Appropriate sanctions may include suspension or revocation of license.

Licenses must be renewed annually by December 31 for the following year, or the license expires. If a license is not renewed within sixty (60) days following expiration, then it becomes “invalid,” and the contractor becomes, in effect, unlicensed. Reexamination is required if a license is not renewed for four (4) years following expiration. After a lapse of four years, no renewal shall be effected and all requirements for a new license must be fulfilled, in accordance with G.S. 87-10.

  • Information Last Updated: 02/2020
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It was highly educational on safety on which will help me and my company save lives and keep safe on the job site in everyday life. – April 17, 2018
Charlie Tregale - Massachusetts
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