Residential builders must be licensed to engage in the construction trades in the state of Michigan. The state's Department of Energy, Labor, and Economic Growth supervises licensed residential builders, including continuing-education requirements. As of 2009, the state does not require licensure for general contractors.
In Michigan, a residential builder may build a home or repair a home subject to state regulation. Although a builder may bid for a complete job, any specialty systems work (HVAC, plumbing or electrical, for example) must be subcontracted to someone licensed to perform that work.
The state also recognizes a maintenance and alteration contractor, who is licensed only to perform very specific tasks or trades. An M and A contractor can perform one or more of 14 specialties including carpentry, siding, roofing and house wrecking.
To be licensed as a residential builder in Michigan, an applicant must complete a minimum of 60 hours of prelicensure education with six hours' education in each of seven subject areas, including business management, project management and the state building codes. Applicants must be at least 18 years old, be financially stable and demonstrate that they are of good moral character. The state may request additional documentation, which must be provided.
When the required prelicensure education is complete and properly documented, license seekers must submit an application to DELEG that contains proof of education.
When the state accepts the application, candidates may register for a competency exam, administered by PSI Services LLC. Applicants must pass the exam to be licensed.
Michigan law changed in 2007 to push license renewals to a three-year cycle, up from two years. Renewal fees are $50 or $60 annually, depending on whether the the renewal is for the first time ($60) or a subsequent renewal ($50) after the law change, and a $30 assessment for the Homeowner Construction Lien Recovery Fund. Accordingly, the first renewal after the law change is $210.
This law also requires the officers of residential construction companies to maintain an active license.
In 1980, the Michigan Legislature established the Michigan Residential Builders and Maintenance & Alteration Contractors Board to oversee people who build residential structures (or combined residential and commercial), or those who repair, renovate or improve these structures, for compensation other than salary or wage. The board was established under Article 24 of Public Act 299 of 1980. The board's duties include administering the licensing process.
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