CSLB License Renewal Fee Increase

2020 brings a CSLB License Renewal Fee Increase!

Licensing fees are going up beginning February 1, 2020.

Timely Active License Renewals

$450 for two years. If you hold the C-10 classification, your renewal fee will be $470 for two years.

Timely Inactive License Renewals

$225 for four years. If you hold the C-10 classification, your renewal fee will be $225 for four years.

Timely Home Improvement Salesperson Registrations

Will now be $95, up from $83.

Delinquent Active License Renewals

$675 for two years. If you hold the C-10 classification, your renewal fee will be $695 for two years.

Delinquent Inactive License Renewals

$337.50 for four years. If you hold the C-10 classification, your renewal fee will be $337.50 for four years.

Delinquent Home Improvement Salesperson Registrations

Will now be $142.50, up from $124.50.

License Reactivation

To reactivate an inactive license, it will now cost you $470, a $20 increase.

Why the increases?

Because the CSLB has basically shot themselves in the financial foot with their prolonged tactics regarding license applications. They’ve spent so much time and effort rejecting and denying applications that their license renewal revenue has been on a rapid decline.

Instead of creating more ridiculous rules to keep people from obtaining licenses, maybe they should improve their processes. Start with hiring capable, experienced application technicians who know the difference between a hammer and a screwdriver. And provide them with the training necessary to accomplish their jobs in an efficient manner.

Having retired from the State, and having worked at the CSLB, I know exactly the type of people they hire to review applications. Now I’m not saying they aren’t good people, they are, they are just people with no construction experience and are poorly trained.

But, since that will never happen, they’ve chosen to mend their self-inflicted wound with a CSLB License Renewal Fee Increase. Government at its best!!

Please follow and like us:

Qualifying B General Contractors Experience

Have you been trying to figure out exactly what “Qualifying B General Contractors Experience” is?

We’ve known for years that the minimum experience for the B classification is framing and at least two unrelated trades. Framing being the major component.

We also know that the CSLB has made it extremely difficult within the last 2-3 years to qualify and obtain the B contractors license classification.

Here is a portion of a CSLB letter sent to me regarding one of my clients that outlines the CSLB’s underground regulation regarding the B class. Why is it an underground reg? Because you won’t find this statement in any published rule, regulation, or law.

“To meet the minimum experience requirement for the B General Building classification, your client must demonstrate journey level work that regularly includes a framing or a rough carpentry component on new or existing structures. Any work completed on existing structures must change the footprint of that structure. For example; room additions, or structural remodeling projects that include reframing for entryways, installation of new headers, size change-outs for retrofitting of widows and doors or load bearing wall components. This framing component, along with 2 other unrelated trades to build or remodel a structure must be performed at the journey level.”

The points I’d like to highlight are in italics. “Any work completed on existing structures must change the footprint of that structure.” And “…load bearing wall components.” It is entirely possible to repair/replace existing load bearing wall components on existing structures without adding square footage or changing the footprint of the structure. “…structural remodeling projects that include reframing for entryways, installation of new headers, size change-outs for retrofitting of widows and doors” can also be done without adding square footage or changing the structures footprint.

So which is it? Must change the footprint or not?!

The following statement can be found in the 2019 version of the contractors license law book on page 9 under Chapter 1. Download the 2019 Contractors License Law book HERE.

“Class “B” — General Building Contractor
The principal business of a General Building contractor deals with any structure built, being built, or to be built, that requires as part of its construction the use of at least two unrelated building trades or crafts; however, framing or carpentry projects may be performed without limitation. A “B” General Building contractor may take a contract for projects that involve one trade only if the contractor holds the appropriate specialty license or subcontracts with an appropriately licensed specialty contractor to perform the work.”

This is the only statement in the license law that suggests framing or carpentry is required for the B trade, and depending on how you read it, it doesn’t even say that!. It definitely doesn’t state that it must be “structural” framing, or framing that increases the square footage or footprint of the structure.

I’m looking forward to the creation of the new B-2 classification because it won’t have in it the unlawful, unpublished, underground reg covering structural framing and Qualifying B General Contractors Experience that has forced so many applicants to work without a license.

Please follow and like us:

B-2 Remodeling Contractors License

The CSLB has provided an update on the new Remodeling Contractors License.

At the December 12th Board meeting, I asked for an update on the new remodeling contractors license. The Board stated that the new legislation has been submitted to the legislature and the bill has a sponsor.

It should go up for a vote sometime in 2020.  When it will be inactive, I don’t know.  Perhaps July 1, 2020, or January 1, 2021.

As I mentioned in a previous post, this new classification, called the B-2, will have a huge, positive impact on the construction industry and to business in California.

Sorry... couldn't pass it up!

The B-2 will allow so many more contractors obtain their license so that they can perform work legally, earn more money, and provide better assurances to consumers with CSLB oversight. And this new license should drastically reduce the number of underground contractors.

Because of the severe restrictions in place for obtaining the B classification, the B-2 will not include the framing component, which is the hardest part for most applicants to prove under the B.

We don’t know yet what the minimum experience requirements will be for the new B-2, so stay tuned.  As soon as I know, I’ll pass it on to you.

I’m pleased as punch that the new remodeling contractors license is going to happen!

Please follow and like us:

C6 C39 RMOs Needed

C6 Cabinet Millwork Finish Carpentry Contractors License
C6 Cabinet Millwork Finish Carpentry Contractors License

Do you hold the C-6 or C-39 contractors license classification and are located in the Los Angeles or Orange County areas?

We are in need of a person or persons who holds either of these classifications to be an RMO on one or more contractors licenses.

We have companies ready to move forward with the licensing process.

If you’re interested in becoming an RMO, with any trade classification, please click here and fill out our contact form. We’ll connect both parties so that you can determine if everybody is a good fit.

C39 Roofing Contractors License

No cost to the RMO who signs up with RMO Services, LLC. And you can earn extra income.

Thank you!

Please follow and like us:

CSLB Licensing Policies and Procedures

Is there such a thing as CSLB Licensing Policies and Procedures?

And does the licensing branch of the CSLB follow them?

From the outside looking in, the answer is no. From when I was an application technician on the inside looking out, the answer was still no.

I firmly believe that the CSLB does not have a written policy or procedure for their license application technicians to follow when they review applications.  It is self-evident they don’t because the correction letters sent to applicants by their technicians include wildly different requests for corrections.  Sure, every app is different, but there are many things within the app that are standard.  But even those standard items are treated differently.

Let’s take a look at this correction letter, click here.  To begin with, it shows Jerry Brown as the Governor.  Was this letter reviewed by a supervisor or manager before it was mailed to the applicant?  No, so therefore there was no oversight or review even at the lowest level.  This indicates that each application technician is acting as an independent contractor, so to speak, and reviewing applications and requesting corrections using their own set of standards.

CSLB Licensing Policies and Procedures

This was the case when I left the CSLB in 2005, and it was the case when a good friend and former coworker of mine retired from the CSLB last year.  He followed his own guidelines when processing applications and refused to follow many of the directions of management because he felt they were incorrect, inaccurate, or unnecessary. He was probably the best technician they had or will have.

I recently received an email from the CSLB licensing manager regarding how applications are processed and here is part of her response “The majority of the licensing division’s policies and procedures differ greatly from 15+ years ago.”  I assumed she was referring to when I left the CSLB, but it seems the minority of the changes to the policies and procedures that weren’t changed included how the applications are processed by the application technicians.

What about their Mission Statement?

Furthermore, how can the CSLB meet its mission statement if they consistently reject and deny applications without a published uniform set of application review guidelines?  The lack of a standardized procedure ultimately forces businesses into operating without a license.  In fact, the CSLB is the largest creator and has the biggest influence on the underground economy because of its lack of uniformity and transparency regarding their license application processes.

From what I can see, they are in violation of the first four bullet points of that mission statement!

They need to update the CSLB licensing policies and procedures again and create a publicly available, written procedural manual for every app tech to follow to ensure that every application is reviewed properly, correctly, and uniformly.

CSLB Mission Statement:

The Contractors State License Board protects consumers by regulating the construction industry through policies that promote the health, safety, and general welfare of the public in matters relating to construction.

The Board accomplishes this by:

  • Ensuring that construction is performed in a safe, competent, and professional manner;
  • Licensing contractors and enforcing licensing laws;
  • Requiring licensure for any person practicing or offering to practice construction contracting;
  • Enforcing the laws, regulations, and standards governing construction contracting in a fair and uniform manner;
  • Providing resolution to disputes that arise from construction activities; and
  • Educating consumers so they can make informed choices.
Please follow and like us:

10% Off Sale

The License Guru is offering 10% off any purchase of study materials or services to the end of the year!

Just enter Dec10Off during check out.

License Guru 10% Off Sale!
Please follow and like us:

Contractor’s Licensing Schools

Contractors License Schools - CSLB Exam Prep Study Materials

Let’s talk about the pros and cons of contractor’s licensing schools.

I’m not referring to any one specific contractor’s licensing school, just the overall contractor’s license school method.  And before we get into the pros and cons, let’s define the word “school.”  They really aren’t schools because they aren’t teaching anything, they are showing people how to take an exam.  They aren’t an accredited learning institution, and their customers don’t go to them to learn their specific trades. So, the word school is a misnomer.

Pros and Cons

Starting with the pros list, only because it’s shorter.

They offer an in-class system where people can go spend 8 hours studying the materials that were shipped to their home or office.  That’s the one pro, if you can even call it that.  Some people think they need to sit in front of an “instructor” to absorb the information contained within the written manuals.

Now the cons.

The biggest con is that their study materials are sub-standard.  I only know this because many of their customers come to me after they’ve failed their exams using the schools study materials.

Next, their customers are just a number to them.  They don’t provide personal attention to every student.  It’s all about how many people can they get signed up.

They don’t personally and professionally prepare their customers applications.  They let the customer complete the app, which results in a large percentage of rejected applications by the cslb.

To my knowledge, they don’t employ anyone who has worked at the CSLB in any capacity.  Obviously, this is not a requirement to run a business, but if you don’t know how things work on the inside, how can you properly inform your clients?

Often, provide incorrect information and/or provide bad advice.  I hear from people all the time who were told something by a school that is incorrect.  Or they suggest a path for the applicant to take that will surely end in a rejection of their application.  And put them in a position where they can’t undo what has been done regarding their app or their experience.

Many of the schools offer guarantees, and I’m using that word lightly.  Some of their guarantees require the applicant to fail the exams several times, and each time the applicant is required to go back to the classroom or study additional practice questions.  It’s not until they’ve jumped through any number of hoops that the customer is even considered for a refund of the fees they’ve paid.  Which could be $1000 or more!

What about their instructors?

Their “instructors” are not always coming from the trades or the construction industry.  Often, they are coming from an educational background, teachers, etc.  If they have 30 people in their classroom, and of those 30, 15 trades are represented, what are the chances that the person standing in the front of the room is well versed in those 15 trade classifications? Slim to none.  You may be applying for a C-11 Elevator contractor’s license.  Do you think that guy in the front of the room knows anything about elevators except that they go up and down?  Extremely doubtful!

So, there are the pros and cons of contractor’s licensing schools.  As you can see, there are far more cons then there are pros.  When looking for CSLB exam study materials or a system that will get you ready for your exams, look for someone who has experience in construction, has worked for the CSLB, and offers the highest quality exam preparation study materials!  Look for The License Guru!!

Please follow and like us:

How long does it take to get a contractors license in California?

How long does it take to get a contractors license in California

As my father used to say… how long is a piece of string?

The processing times at the Contractors State License Board (CSLB) vary greatly.  It depends on the type of application, document, or form you’re submitting.

Different applications are processed by different units within the CSLB, and they each have their own backlogs.

When I joined the CSLB many, many years ago, the backlog was six months for an exam application to be processed.  Today it averages around three weeks, but that’s just for the application to be reviewed by a license application technician.  What are some other factors that could effect your application?

  1. Is the application formatted correctly?
  2. Are you applying for a B-Gen or A-Eng license?
  3. Is your experience that of an employee of a licensed contractor or self-employed?
  4. Are you submitting owner/builder experience?

Let’s say that your application hits all the CSLB marks for excellence and they approve your application and schedule you for the exams. Great! You’ll only have to wait about another three weeks for that test date to arrive.

While you are waiting for that test date, you’ll receive an envelope from the CSLB that contains forms you will take to a Live Scan office to get your fingerprints processed.  Check, one more thing off the list!  But wait… the FBI and DOJ that process those prints have their own backlogs and they can take anywhere between two and six weeks to return their reports to the CSLB.

Backing up a bit, what if your application doesn’t get a passing grade and the exams aren’t scheduled right away?  Well, then you’re looking at additional weeks of back and forth with the technician, waiting on a correction letter to be delivered in the mail, mailing your corrections back and then waiting on the technician to process those corrections.  If those corrections aren’t accepted, rinse and repeat.

There are tricks to speed the process up a bit, depending on your specific situation.  I’d be happy to help you find out.  Send me an email and we can discuss it. So, how long does it take to get a contractors license in California?  How much time do you have?

Please follow and like us:

CSLB Contractors Exam Study Materials

Have you been scheduled for your California contractors license test and you need CSLB exam study materials?

The License Guru offers the most up-to-date, highest quality exam study materials available in the industry…and at the Lowest Price!

Are there areas of your trade that you’re not that familiar with? Our kits will help you in those areas that you may feel the weakest in. Every trade kit is created for your specific trade classification.

Each kit is fully customizable.

  • The basic kit includes a written study manual.
  • From there you can add audio lectures on CD’s. These discs are a verbal reading of the written study manual and are great if you spend a lot of time in your vehicle.
  • You can also add lectures on DVD’s. These video tutorials include a specialist or contractor in your trade and they will take you step-by-step through the written manual.
  • Practice Exams – We offer an excellent online practice test program that allows you to take the practice tests in several formats including: timed, untimed, answers provided, or not provided. Or you could choose practice tests on paper!

If you need to purchase study materials or just want to view the different options, click on the images below. Prices start as low as $165.

CSLB Single Trade Exam Study Materials
Our single Trade or Law & Business kit
CSLB Exam Study Materials
Our Complete kit including one Trade and Law & Business
Please follow and like us:

Who can perform Solar C46 work?

Here’s the answer in a nutshell.  There are seven CSLB license classifications that can legally install photovoltaic solar energy systems.  They can include:

  • “A” – General Engineering contractors are authorized to install solar energy systems.
  • “B” – General Building contractors are authorized to install solar energy systems within the definition of B&P Code section 7057, since a solar energy system constitutes the use of two unrelated building trades or crafts.
  • C-4 – Boiler, Hot-Water Heating and Steam Fitting contractors are authorized to perform projects that include solar heating equipment associated with systems authorized by this classification.
  • C-10 – Electrical contractors are authorized to perform any solar projects that generate, transmit, transform, or utilize electrical energy in any form for any purpose.
  • C-36 – Plumbing contractors are authorized to perform any project using solar equipment to heat water or fluids to a suitable temperature.
  • C-46 – Solar contractors install, modify, maintain, and repair thermal and photovoltaic solar energy systems. A licensee in this classification shall not undertake or perform building or construction trades, crafts or skills, except when required to install a thermal or photovoltaic solar energy system.
  • C-53 – Swimming Pool contractors are authorized to install solar heating in swimming pool projects.

If you’re looking to install solar systems, or you’re looking for a contractor to install a solar system on your home or building, make sure you have the correct CSLB license classification for the job.

Please follow and like us: