What are the Licensing Requirements for an Exterior Lighting Contractor?

Knowing the licensing requirements for an exterior lighting contractor will ensure you that the contractor is a professional and has met and obtained the licenses required to perform your projects.

The Licensing for Integrated Building Systems (IBS) explains that low-voltage work varies from state to state and sometimes from city to city. Even if your contractor has the IBS license, you should still check the city that you live in to see if the license applies to your city and if it covers the low-voltage work that is involved in many exterior lighting projects.

The following states do not require any state-wide, low-voltage licensing:

  • Iowa
  • Kansas
  • Mississippi
  • New Hampshire
  • North Dakota
  • Ohio
  • Wisconsin

These states have no statewide requirements, but may have some requirements based on the city:

  • Colorado
  • Indiana
  • Missouri
  • Pennsylvania

An exterior lighting contractor may possess certification, which is not to be confused with a license. A certification can be issued by a government agency according to the laws of that locality. It is used by an independent organization or exterior contractor that specializes in a particular specialty of work.

Homeowners can find their state listing by visiting www.neca-neis.org. This is the site that has the state licensing and the requirements. The national codes on legal licensing requirements are required by each state and locality. Licensing for exterior lighting contractor requires a specific number of years of hands-on experience. Many states also require contractors to renew their license with educational classes.

There are several states that distinguish between contractors and technicians, which can allow for different licenses for residential exterior lighting work and commercial exterior lighting work. However, the contractor is still responsible for meeting all state and locality licensing.

The requirements for an exterior lighting contractor will depend on your state and locality. All states and locality may require different requirements for contractors. The key to remember is to look for licensed contractors. Certified doesn’t mean the contractor is licensed, it only means the contractor has been certified by that state and locality. This can be confusing for homeowners, as many homeowners believe when they see ‘certified’ that the contractor has been trained and licensed, when it may not necessarily mean both. Get credentials and ask to see a contractor’s license before hiring any contractor.

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