Contractor Licensing/Registration

Home Improvement Contractor

Home improvement refers to the repair, replacement, remodeling, alteration, conversion, modernization, improvement or addition to any land or building, or that portion thereof which is used, or designed to be used, as a private residence or dwelling place for not more than 3 families and shall include, but not be restricted to, the construction, replacement or improvement of driveways, swimming pools, porches, garages, fallout shelters and other improvements to structures, or upon land which is adjacent to a dwelling house. Home improvement does not include: 

  • The construction of a new home building or work done by a contractor in compliance with a guarantee of completion of a new building project
  • The sale of goods or materials by a seller who neither arranges to perform nor performs directly or indirectly any work or labor in connection with the installation of or application of the goods or materials 

City of Columbus (licensed) Home Improvement General Contractors are permitted to perform the following scopes of work:

  • Structural additions, alterations, or repairs to existing 1, 2 and 3 family dwellings
  • Construction of accessory structures and/or garages (for 1, 2 and 3 family dwellings)

City of Columbus licensed Home Improvement Limited Contractors are permitted to perform one or more of the following scopes of work (based off board approval):

  • Residential roofing
  • Residential siding, windows, and doors
  • Residential deck installation
  • Residential basement waterproofing
  • Residential prefabricated fireplaces and wood or coal stoves
  • Residential masonry fireplaces
  • Residential fencing
  • Residential sidewalks and driveway approaches
  • Residential exterior lathing and stucco
  • Residential swimming pools and spas
  • Residential asphalt paving
  • Residential irrigation sprinkler

In order to be licensed in the City of Columbus as a Home Improvement General Contractor, applicants are required to have a minimum of 3 full years of hands-on installation experience in the 1, 2 and 3 family dwelling improvement field.

In order to be licensed in the City of Columbus as a Home Improvement Limited Contractor, applicants are required to have a minimum of 1 full year of hands-on experience in the field for which application is being made.
Alternatively, in lieu of the above requirements above, the applicant for any license may be:

(1) An engineer, registered in Ohio, in the specific field of work for the type of license for which application is made; or
(2) A graduate engineer, with at least one (1) full year of experience as a designer or installer in the specific field of work for the type of license for which application is made.

Please note: Contractors who wish to perform structural work on four (4) or more family dwellings and/or commercial structures, or new construction other than residential garages and/or accessory structures, must be registered as a City of Columbus General Contractor. Please see the General Contractor section for more information.

The Board of Home Improvement Contractors meets once per month. Applicants must submit their application (and fee) no later than one (1) week prior to the next scheduled board meeting.

Applicants are not required to be present at the board meeting. However, contractors may appear before the board of Home Improvement and General Contractors for the following reasons.

  1. Adjudications
  2. Due process complaints (filed against or by the contractor)

Below are a list of forms used by a home improvement contractor:

Home Improvement and Demolition Contractor Application
Contractor License Transfer Application
City of Columbus Bond Form
Assignment/Authorized Signer Form