- A contractor or subcontractor who holds a license under the Maryland home improvement law is not required to hold a construction license issued by the Clerk of the Circuit Court. (www.marylandtaxes.com)
- New home builders must register with the Consumer Protection Division of the Office of the Attorney General. (www.oag.state.md.us)
- Contractors must display their home improvement license number on all of their home improvement contracts, trucks, and advertisements.
- Home improvement contracts cannot require the payment of more than one third of the total contract price at the time of signing the contract.
- Arbitration clauses in contracts must be clearly disclosed and initialed by both parties.
- Licensees must notify the Executive Director of the Commission within 10 days of a change of address, trade name or ownership of the business by certified mail, return receipt requested.
- Checks sent to the commission with applications go directly to a bank due to auditing requirements. A cancelled check is not proof of licensure. Only the hard copy of the actual license is proof of licensure.
Tips for Homeowners
- To make sure the contractor you choose is licensed. It is a criminal offense to do home improvements without a license and there is no protection from the Guarantee Fund for the homeowner who uses and unlicensed contractor.
- Find license status
- Call 410-230-6309 or 1-888-218-5925. Ask if complaints have been filed against a contractor and whether they have been resolved or are still open.
- Request references from prospective contractor-check them!
- If the contractor is providing lead paint abatement services, see if the contractor is accredited to do this work. Call 410-537-3825.
- Get a copy of the contractor's current liability insurance certificate.
- Always get a written contract.
- Pay no more than 1/3 of the contract price as down payment.
- If a building, or any other type of, permit is needed ask to see it before work starts.