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The P&DS Services Center is closed for in person services. Online applications and processes are available for all services.
Our office issues licenses to individuals and companies who perform work within Boulder that requires a building permit or right-of-way permit. Boulder does not accept reciprocal licenses from other jurisdictions. ICC certifications, State of Colorado Electrical or Plumbing certification, or ISA Arborist certification must be submitted with your contractor license application for your license to be issued.
Every contractor granted a license is required to maintain a certificate of insurance showing the following information:
Renewals are now processed through the Customer Self-Service Portal.
You may be able to do construction work yourself on a property you own if your project meets one of the following criteria. If you do not meet these criteria, you must hire a City of Boulder licensed contractor:
The work will be done on a single-family detached dwelling (single-family house) or on a single-family house’s accessory structures that you own and occupy as your primary or principal residence. This exception does not apply to detached accessory dwelling units.
A list of city-licensed contractors is also available in the Planning & Development Services Center, 1739 Broadway, third floor. You can also find contractors in the local phone books and on the International Code Council (ICC) website, but they must be licensed with the City of Boulder to perform the work.
If you do meet one of the above criteria and plan to do the work yourself, or if you plan to hire a licensed contractor, read the information on the Before You Apply and Do You Need an Allocation pages before you start the project. All subcontractors must be licensed by the city.
Contractor means any person who undertakes with or for another person within the city to build, construct, alter, repair, add to, move or demolish any building or structure, or any portion thereof. Contractor also includes any person licensed by the city manager to inspect residential buildings, per the Boulder Revised Code (BRC)10-3.
General Building Contractor includes any person, company or agency holding a current A, B or C building contractor license with the City of Boulder and does not include the following:
Other than a homeowner performing work on their own home, no person shall perform any work as a contractor in the city without first obtaining a city contractor’s license to perform such work.
Permits will not be issued for work to be done by a person who does not have a valid, current license as required by the city for the type of work to be performed, except a homeowner performing work on their own home.
No person other than a Class A or Class B licensed contractor shall perform work requiring the supervision of an architect or structural engineer.
To obtain a new contractor license or renew a license, the contractor must:
Provide a current copy of a Certificate of Insurance as required by BRC 4-1-8 (except Class F, G and D-9).
Pay the annual licensing fees as required by BRC 4-20-4.
Class A: entitles the licensee to contract for the construction, alteration, wrecking, or repair of any type or size of building or structure permitted in the City of Boulder.
Class B: entitles the licensee to contract for the construction, alteration, wrecking, or repair of all commercial and residential buildings or structures in the City of Boulder having the following construction types: Type V, Type IV, Type III-B and Type II-B.
Class C: entitles the licensee to contract for:
Class D: entitles the licensee to contract for labor or for labor and materials involving one or more of the following trades:
Class E: entitles the licensee to contract for the building or construction of:
Class F: entitles the licensee to construct, alter, or repair the licensee’s own building or structure, if the total value of the labor and material for each such project does not exceed $500.00 and if the project does not involve alteration of a load-bearing element or work governed by the city’s electrical, mechanical, or plumbing codes.
Class G: entitles the licensee to inspect rental properties within the City of Boulder for energy efficiency prescriptive requirements as detailed in the Boulder Property Maintenance Code, B.R.C. 1981, 10-2, Appendix C. These requirements are part of the SmartRegs project adopted by City Council in the fall of 2010.
New License applicants: Any person, agency or company wishing to become a City of Boulder licensed A, B or C general contractor must provide a professional criterion that demonstrates competency in, or knowledge of, the International Building Codes. Proof of professional criteria includes:
New Class A or Class B license applicants shall also provide information indicating their level of education or level of training or years of experience in the construction of non-residential buildings. Where the education or training or experience is not applicable to the A or B type work, the City Manager reserves the right to refuse the license to a particular applicant.
License applicants: Any person, agency or company wishing to become a City of Boulder licensed Class D, E, F or G contractor need only submit a completed application along with the certificate of insurance and the applicable fees with the following exceptions:
The city manager may suspend or revoke a license issued under this chapter for the grounds and under the procedures prescribed by section 4-1-10, "Revocation of Licenses," B.R.C. 1981. Grounds for suspension or revocation include, without limitation, failure to maintain required insurance.
Any person may work as an apprentice but shall not do any electrical wiring for the installation of electrical apparatus or equipment for light, heat, or power except under the supervision of a licensed electrician. The degree of supervision required shall be no more than one licensed electrician to supervise no more than three apprentices at the jobsite.
Fire Contractor means a person that undertakes or performs, with or for another, any fire installation, alteration, repair or other work in the city for which a permit issued under the city fire code from the city is required under this code.
But this term does not include subcontractors working for and under the supervision of a fire contractor licensed under this chapter or a homeowner performing work upon the owner’s residence, or a building or structure accessory thereto, which is intended for the owner’s personal use.
*NOTE: All installers of fire alarm systems shall be licensed as low voltage wire installers by the State of Colorado. All line voltage work, when necessary on a fire alarm system, shall be completed by a State of Colorado licensed electrician.
Companies or individual wanting to become a fire contractor within the City of Boulder must submit proof of qualifications in their field of work.
All Class A fire sprinkler license’s must show proof of registration with the State of Colorado as a Fire Suppression System Contractor and the sprinkler fitter(s) working in the City of Boulder must be registered as a Sprinkler Fitter with the State of Colorado. Proof of registration is required.
Companies or individuals wanting to become licensed as a Class C Fire Alarm Contractor or Class D Special Suppression System Installer must show proof of qualifications in the form of certification from a nationally recognized organization. The National Institute for Certification in Engineering Technologies (NICET) is an example of a commonly accepted certification with a Level II or higher. Proof of manufacture training of specific brands or models may be acceptable as well. Other certifications by other entities that shows a level of technical competence in the area of the work will also be considered as acceptable qualifications.
Submit certifications and proof of identification to Amber Wright at email@example.com or Boulder Fire-Rescue, 3065 Center Green Drive, Boulder, CO 80301.
If your business name has changed since your last renewal, a request to change the name on the license must be submitted in writing. This request should be on letterhead with the current name of the company and be accompanied with a current certificate of insurance. If you start a new business, all new license requirements must be met.
Mechanical Contractor means a person that undertakes or performs, with or for another, any mechanical installation, alteration, repair or other work in the city for which a mechanical permit from the city is required under this code. Mechanical contractor does not include subcontractors working for and under the supervision of a mechanical contractor licensed by the city or a homeowner performing work upon the owner's residence, or a building or structure accessory thereto, which is intended for the owner's personal use.
Class B: entitles the licensee to undertake or perform work covered by the mechanical code and fuel gas codes for commercial and dwelling units except for work associated with commercial kitchen hoods and ventilation systems, and installations or repairs in an “H” or “I” occupancy as defined in the city building code.
New License applicants: Any person, agency or company wishing to become a City of Boulder licensed mechanical contractor must provide a professional criterion that demonstrates competency in, or knowledge of, the International Mechanical Codes. Proof of professional criteria includes:
Complete a City of Boulder Contractor Licensing Application.
Plumbing Contractor means any person that undertakes or performs, with or for another, any plumbing installation, alteration, repair, or other work in the city for which a plumbing permit is required from the city or fuel gas piping as described in the fuel gas code.
Plumbing contractor does not include subcontractors working for and under the supervision of a plumbing contractor licensed under this chapter or a homeowner performing work upon the owner’s residence or a building or structure accessory thereto intended for the owner’s personal use.
A plumbing contractor licensed by the city is responsible for all work performed under the contract, whether the contractor, an employee, or a subcontractor performs the work.
No developer, contractor, or subcontractor shall perform any work affecting public property, rights-of-way, grounds, any city-owned utility system, or any other utility system or in the street right-of-way or utility easement, whether or not the work is performed for the city, without first obtaining a right-of-way contractor license from the city before commencing any such work.
The applicant shall provide a bond:
For exam dates and locations, select the "International Society of Arboriculture" link. For a written arborist licensing exam, contact the City of Boulder Urban Forestry Division at 303-441-4406.