How to Become a Contractor in Vermont

Vermont is unique for contractors because this profession is not highly monitored. There are no state licenses for general contractors, nor are many offered by municipalities. So, how does one become a contractor in Vermont?

You can work as a contractor by properly registering your business with the state, holding a bond and liability coverage, getting accredited by the Better Business Bureau (BBB), and following all local codes and regulations.

Do You Need a Contractor’s License in Vermont?

Contractors do not need a license in Vermont. They must follow local licensing laws, although many municipalities do not offer contractor-specific licenses or registration.

Types of Contractors in Vermont

If your contracting work deals with electrical, plumbing, wells, or wastewater systems, you may be required to be licensed by the state in your trade. For more information on trade licensing, see the Office of Professional Regulation’s page.

Some types of contractors you can find in Vermont are:

  • General contractors
  • Electrical contractors
  • Design contractors
  • Specialty contractors (painting, drywall, masonry, etc.)
  • Roofing contractors
  • And more…

Becoming a Contractor in Vermont

To get started in the construction field in VT, you should:

  1. Register your contracting business
  2. Hold a bond and insurance
  3. Get accredited by the BBB
  4. Follow local regulations
  5. Register Your Business

You can use Vermont’s Online Business Service Center to register your business. Vermont recommends consulting with your attorney before proceeding with this application. 

First, you’ll need to select your business type. The most common options are partnerships, LLCs, limited partnerships, corporations, nonprofit corporations, and sole proprietorships. 

Depending on your business type, you might need to visit the U.S. IRS page for further registration and a tax ID number. These same businesses will need to set up a VT Corporate of Business Tax Account. 

If you plan to have employees, be sure to also obtain your Employer Tax Account. 

For further instructions and to begin your registration, see here.

  1. Bond and Insurance

Bond and insurance requirements for contractors vary depending on the scope of work and where in Vermont you’re working. 

Bonds cover any work you may not finish, while liability insurance covers damages on the job. Worker’s Compensations Insurance is also required if you have any employees.

You can speak to various insurance providers to see their recommended coverage for your work and compare quotes before deciding. 

  1. BBB Accreditation 

The BBB helps people find trustworthy companies by providing reviews, reporting complaints, and monitoring businesses over the last 100 years. 

BBB Accreditation is not required, but it could help your business rise above the competition. In fact, the Burlington website recommends that customers in Vermont choose contractors that are BBB accredited. 

To learn more about the accreditation requirements, check out their website. 

  1. Follow Local Regulations

Your city or municipality may have requirements for contractor or business registration at the local level. Always look to the local building or licensing division for guidance when beginning a new contracting project. 

Contractor Salaries in Vermont

Contractor salaries depend on your scope of work and years of experience. Nonetheless, here are some average salaries for general contractors across VT.

  • Burlington, VT: $61,178
  • Essex, VT: $64,496
  • Rutland City: $58,218

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