General Requirements ForBecoming A Licensed Contractor In Arkansas

You’re ready to begin your career as a concrete contractor and you need to obtain your license. You know that you possess all the necessary training and experience, but you need approval from the state to get everything underway. Having all the proper licensing is going to benefit you immensely: it demonstrates that you know what you’re doing, and it shows that your customers can trust you. Here’s what you can expect when undergoing the process to obtain your license:



In Arkansas, licensing falls into two primary categories: a Commercial Contractor’s License and a Residential Contractor’s License. Both categories have a unique set of requirements, and we want to explain those differences.


Contractor’s License

The term “commercial” refers to any building or property that is not considered a single-family residence. Any small office or a large commercial complex falls into this category. Any project that exceeds $50,000 in labor and materials costs will require that you possess a Commercial Contractor’s License.

We also want to discuss how the state of Arkansas defines a “project.” A project encompasses a single contract and dividing up a project so that it falls under the $50,000 threshold is illegal. If you plan on bidding for projects, then you’ll need a commercial contractor’s license. This will allow you to get work immediately and avoid any legal obstacles in getting underway. We recommend that you take the following steps to obtain your license:

  • Fill out the Arkansas Commercial New Application Form
  • Pay the $100 fee to submit the application along with providing three professional references
  • Take the Arkansas Business and Law exam and submit your test scores
  • Provide proof of a fully executed $10,000 Contractor’s Bond
  • Provide additional financial details


Contractor’s License:

Residential services are limited to single-family homes. These are licenses that allow you to build residential properties or renovate/rebuild existing properties. The state of Arkansas considers a “single-family residence” to be a property that contains up to four separate single units. An example of this would be a duplex or triplex, which contains multiple families in a single building. Any residential building that exceeds four units is considered to be a commercial project.

Any project that exceeds $2,000 will require a Residential Contractor’s License. This includes the cost of labor, materials, and the prices of a subcontractor. When applying for your license, here are the steps that you need to follow:

  • Fill out the Arkansas Residential Builder New Application Form
  • Pay the $100 fee to submit the application along with three professional references
  • Take the Arkansas Business and Law exam and submit your scores
  • Provide documentation outlining your previous year of business
required documents



Light Building Commercial Classification: Under this specific classification, the contractor can perform work on any commercial project that does not exceed $500,000 in labor and material costs. Additionally, the building cannot exceed two stories in height. This particular license will also allow you to work on residential properties. The requirements for this license are the same as getting a general commercial license.

Home Improvement License: This is a specific type of residential license that you will need if you plan on undergoing remodels or providing repair services. You only need this license if the project exceeds $2,000.

General Contractor

Licensing Exams

The Business and Law exam is a nationally-accredited exam that gauges your experience and preparation when it comes to residential or commercial contracting services. The test is open book and you have two hours to answer 50 questions.

To register for the exam and complete it, you will need to undergo the following procedures:

  • Visit the website for Prometric to sign up for the closest in-person exam (you can also call them at 1-888-763-0131)
  • Make sure you are signing up for the Business and Law exam (AR04 Program name)
  • Use Exam Code 100
  • Determine the closest testing center
  • Pay for the exam registration. You can pay with your debit or credit card, or you can write a check. The exam fee is $80.
required documents
We strongly recommend that you show up at the testing center at least 30 minutes early. We also want to emphasize the importance of studying for your exam so that you can confidently pass it and receive your license. You will need to bring a government-issued form of identification with you, such as a driver’s license or passport. Prometric will send your results not long after you complete the exam.

If you have any questions, you are always encouraged to contact the Arkansas Contractors Licensing Board. You can fax them your test results at 501-372-2247.

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