How to become a general contractor

How to become a general contractor

Table of Contents

If you are looking to get into the field of construction, well your future is bright for a fact, as a general contractor, you are in the right place. IT is important to learn How to become a general contractor. Here in this article you will get to everything about this field. How to get into the field? What qualification or educational background should you opt for? What process you should follow to get the license? What skills and techniques you should learn to become a good general contractor? And more importantly where you can find jobs as a general contractor? However, the most important thing to keep in mind before entering this field, is the type of general contractor you want to become. Then you can go further accordingly.

What is a General Contractor?

A general contractor can be any company or an individual you hire to monitor your construction work and an outside or third party. They bridge the gap between the construction site or practical implementations and management which usually provides the workflow and blueprints. They are called general contractors because they can work with general problems and complications of the project. Simply, a general contractor is someone with general skills of all including planning, budgeting, communicating, management and security. If you really want to know How to become a general contractor you must learn all these skills.

What qualification should you get to become a general contractor?

There are different categories of general contractors that is why each category requires a different type of educational background. However in general it is not necessary to have any educational degree to become a good contractor, just enough experience in the field is enough.

High School Diploma or GED

Any high school diploma related to construction, management or planning fields can be helpful to become a general contractor. Other than these diplomas the GED tests would be useful. GED technically stands for General Educational Development test, this test is an internationally recognized diploma valid for all work categories.

Professional Degree in Architecture

If you are willing to go to the complex residential and commercial building projects, a professional degree in architecture and design could be more beneficial to understand the updated construction trends and styles. These professional degrees have more scope than the short diplomas. Constructors and developers are likely to give priority to degree holders over diploma holders during hiring. It increases your chances to grow in professional life.

Professional Degree in Civil Engineering

A professional educational background in civil engineering can be a booster in your professional career. These types of degrees increase your validity of knowledge in front of the market while you are on a job hunt. Moreover, many businesses prefer civil engineers for complex industrial construction that includes heavy installment of machines and equipment. They are also in benefit while applying for large governmental projects such as road construction, bridges and underpasses etc.

Pass the contractor License Exam

The Contractor license exam is important to get the license. The test includes all the general information and skills evaluation that you need to know to become a general contractor. It is not compulsory to have related educational backgrounds or any specific degree to appear in this test.

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License requirements?

License is compulsory to work as a general contractor. License increases your validity of skills and authenticity of your work. It will give the employer a sense of confidentiality about you. You can follow the steps mentioned below to get the license.

  • You have to register your city name along with the city and address.
  • You have to decide the type of license required according to your experience and expertise.
  • Complete the license application form properly
  • You have to pay the necessary fee, fixed by the officials.
  • Then take the GC exam to get your license

Skills you need to learn to become a general contractor?

You must need to know about the following skills to see How to become a general contractor.

How to plan a Construction project?

Planning skills are really important for the general contractor. He has to collaborate with the team to plan the allocation of work and resources. How to plan the work schedules and payment schedule for the labor is also his responsibility.

He must know Human Resource Management

On-site hiring and firing of the labor staff is a general contractor’s job. It is his duty to analyze the work quality and need of the labor if any is required. He can fire any worker on the basis of work performance. Moreover, according to the human resource requirements, he can hire new staff.

Finances and supply chain management

General contractor is directly involved with the budget allocation and finance management. It is his duty to ensure the maximum effectiveness of budget consumption. He is also responsible for looking for the flaws that impact the budget. Moreover, he also ensures the availability of the materials and resources.

Security and Monitoring of the construction site

He must ensure the security of the site to see if there is any misuse of materials. Sometimes, the workers get into disputes on construction sites. It is the general contractor’s duty to resolve these disputes timely. Security of the material, resources and personnel is very important. Any conflict on a construction site can cause delays in the process.


Where do they work?

The general contractors work on several projects such as residential and commercial projects. They work as a supervisor or monitor of the whole project. Moreover, They also work with complex industrial and governmental projects.


To conclude, being a general contractor you can get a lot of opportunities in the construction industry. However, keep in mind the requirements and trends in the market. So, you can update your skills accordingly. It is important to have market oriented skills in your profession. It will keep you in competition. Without high priority skills, maybe there is no vast scope for you. Moreover, it is remote work. You do not need to be a permanent employee of any company. You can take projects and charge according to the complexity and your skills from the employers. You can work individually from home until you get any project or you can build your own office.


There is no specific education or training requirement to become a general contractor, but most states require contractors to have a license. To obtain a license, contractors must pass a state exam, have a certain amount of experience, and provide proof of insurance and bonding.

To become a general contractor, you need to have experience in the construction industry. This can include working as a carpenter, electrician, plumber, or other trade. Many contractors start as apprentices or laborers and work their way up to become supervisors or managers.

General contractors need to have strong communication, organizational, and problem-solving skills. They also need to be able to read and interpret blueprints, manage budgets, and supervise workers. Additionally, contractors need to have a good understanding of building codes and regulations.

General contractors can find work by bidding on projects, networking with other contractors and builders, and advertising their services. Many contractors also work with architects and engineers to develop project plans and specifications.

To grow your business as a general contractor, you need to build a reputation for quality work and excellent customer service. This can be done by completing projects on time and on budget, communicating effectively with clients, and providing a high level of craftsmanship. Additionally, contractors can expand their services by offering design-build or construction management services.