How To Be A Contractor
If you have an interest in building things and a knack for management, you might be interested in how to be a contractor. A contractor's job entails managing construction projects on homes or buildings. General contractors, for example, will often meet with homeowners who want to add additions to their homes. They will supervise all work done on the project-from getting the necessary supplies to securing a work force to complete the job. Becoming a contractor may also mean branching out and starting ones own business. Read on for more information on how to become a contractor.
1. Determine If You Have the Skills. If you are interested in being a contractor, you'll first need to decide what kind of contractor you'd like to become. Some contractors deal exclusively with electrical work, while others may work primarily in carpentry. General contractors are overseers who may have special experience or skill in several different areas. You must also consider the specific skills you can bring to the job if you wish to be a contractor. Are you a naturally good manager? You may be supervising many people on time-sensitive projects. Do you have a firm grasp on budgeting? Many times contractors have a set budget to work with and must complete the project within this parameter.
2. Learn About Educational Requirements. While there are no specific educational requirements to be a contractor, those who are interested in pursuing this career should consider taking high school or college coursework that could enhance their skills in the future. This may include coursework in construction science or construction management, along with classes in surveying, engineering and business management. Some colleges do offer classes specifically geared toward construction science.
3. Find Out About Licensing Requirements. Contractors are not always required to be have a license, but voluntary licensing and certification is encouraged. Professional construction industry groups may require written and/or technical exams in order to award certification. Self-study courses may teach such things as risk management and address certain legal issues as well. Having a special certification may increase the odds that you'll find a suitable job as a contractor. In addition, you may want to check with the city and state where you'll be working to ensure that you meet any local licensing requirements.
4. Find a Job. While many contractors are self-employed, some began their careers working for other contractors. If you have little or no experience as a contractor, this may be a route to take. Find out if any area contractors offer internships or entry-level positions which will allow you to learn on the job skills. Some contractors start out as construction workers and gradually work their way up into supervisory positions. If you want to be a contractor, you may need to consider starting lower on the proverbial ladder and acquiring the knowledge you'll need to run your own successful contracting business in the future.