How To Get A Contractors License In New Mexico

Contract construction work can be a lucrative business. But like any other type of business, there are certain rules and requirements you must meet. This is so everyone carries out the work legally. In the state of New Mexico, one of the most important requirements for all construction contractors is to have a valid contractors license.

Contractor licensing requirements makes sense when you think about it. Without such requirements, anyone with a few tools could decide that they want to start building houses or other structures. Licensing requirements ensure that all buildings and working conditions are in accordance with current safety and quality control measures.

Let's say a contractor is found to be working without a valid license in the state of New Mexico. Their project will be halted, and they may face criminal charges. Luckily, you shouldn't have to worry about this. It has never been easier to get your general contractor license in New Mexico! Why not go for it?

At Contractor Training Center, we are experts at helping people pass their exams and receive their contractor's license. Our team has experience with the licensing procedures in each state. We know all the ins and outs of the process. We will work with you to make sure you have everything you need to ace your exams and get your New Mexico contractors license.

Benefits of Having a Contractors License in New Mexico

New Mexico requires anyone engaging in construction-related contracting work to have a license. Section 60-13-3 of the New Mexico Construction Industries Licensing Act of 1978 defines construction-related work as any type of mechanical, electrical, plumbing, LP gas, or general construction work.

So, if you want to legally perform any of those jobs in the state, you’re going to need to know how to get a contractors license in New Mexico.

Getting licensed helps your credibility. This will help you attract work and stand out from your competition. Today, people can hire a contractor with just a few clicks of a button. Websites and apps like Angie’s List and Home Advisor have made it quick and easy to find reputable contractors. You won’t even make their list if you don’t have a license. That’s a lot of potential customers to miss out on.

Having the right New Mexico contractor license can help you secure bigger, higher paying jobs. There are over 100 different types of contractor licenses in New Mexico. But you can obtain most when you get your New Mexico general contractor license. Our team of experts at the Contractor Training Center can help you navigate the rest!

How to Get Your New Mexico Contractor License

Getting your New Mexico general contractor license is easier than you think. First, you satisfy the initial requirements. You just need to pass two exams. These are the business law and a technical (trade specific) exam.

Once you pass these, you can get your contractor license in New Mexico. From there, if your work requires additional licenses, it is often just a simple matter of filling out the right forms and keeping your license current. 

Below we have outlined everything you need to do in order to get your contractor license in New Mexico.

1. Get pre-approved by the state

Before you even start preparing for your exams, you need to be pre-approved by the state. You won’t even be able to register for the exams until you have the pre-approval. This requires you to be a Qualified Party. To be considered a Qualified Party you must:

  • Complete the application packet
  • Submit signed, legible, and notarized verification of work experience in the classifications you wish to test for
  • Have a sufficient amount of verifiable experience in your trade

Note: for certain classifications, you only need 2 years of experience (4,000 hours), but other states require at least 4 years of experience, or 8,000 hours. You must have gained this experience while working for a licensed contractor in the trade that you wish to test for.

2. Decide which type of license you need

New Mexico has quite a few different specifications of a contractor license. Some of them require their own exam. The New Mexico general contractor license (GB-98) is the broadest of all the licenses. It will allow you to lawfully bid on any projects that include the GB-98 classification. But for specialized work, you may need a different license.

Some of the specialized contractor's licenses in New Mexico include:

  • Residential and Commercial Electrical License (EE-98)

    Needed for anyone looking to do jobs involving with fire detection systems, low voltage, sign wiring, and all commercial, industrial, and residential structural or building wiring

  • Residential Building Contractor License (GB-2)

    Required for bidding on any residential project that falls under the GB-2 classification, including building, renovations, and remodeling projects.
  • Natural Gas Fitting Contractor License (MM-2)

    Required to bid on or perform any natural gas appliance installations. Or to service or install any part of a natural gas system.
  • Plumbing Contractor License (MM-1)

    This license covers any type of plumbing, irrigation systems, utility connections, gas piping for water heaters, kitchen equipment, laundry equipment, swimming pool heaters, and gas grills.
  • Heating and Air Conditioning Contractor License (MM-2)

    Needed for bidding and contracting any commercial or residential heating and air conditioning project. This includes remodeling, construction, servicing, and installations of new systems.

Take the Exams

Once you know which license you need, you can start preparing for that specific exam. All contractors seeking a license must take and pass two exams. The business and law exam, and then the exam that is specific for your trade license.

Most of the trade tests have around 100 questions and last anywhere from 250 minutes (2.5 hours) to 500 minutes (5 hours). Some exams, like the Electrical contractor's license, have multiple sections. 

You need to score 75% to pass. Question topics will cover the entire range of your trade. So you really have to know your stuff. Luckily, we here at the Contractor Training Center can help.

Exam Details

The Psychiatric Solutions Incorporated (PSI) administers the New Mexico contractor license exams. This is a breakdown of what to expect on the Business and Law exam, which all contractors must take:

  • You must be pre-approved to schedule your exam
  • The exam fee is $44
  • You must score  75% to pass
  • There are 50 questions, and a 125-minute time limit
  • Topics cover labor laws, tax laws, risk management, lien laws, environmental safety, contractors, business organization, licensing requirements, and bidding and estimating

This is a breakdown of the New Mexico general contractor license test. This is the most common of all the trade exams:

  • You must be pre-approved by the state before you take the test
  • You must score 75% or higher to pass
  • The exam fee is $30
  • The test has 100 questions, you have 300 minutes (5 hours) to complete it
  • Topics cover concrete, carpentry, masonry, site work, metals, windows and doors, drywall, moisture and thermal protection, codes, price estimating, plan reading, and OSHA compliance

Preparing for your New Mexico contractors license exam

Trying to study for your exams can be an intimidating process. The exams cover a lot of material. It can be difficult to work through it all on your own. That’s where we come in.

We have exam preparation materials and seminars for all types of exams. Our instructors are experts in their field. They are passionate about helping you pass your tests and advancing your professional career.

We are so confident in our process that we back our materials with our no-fail guarantee. If you don’t pass the first time around, we will ask for your pass-fail report and let you take the class again for free.

We understand that everyone learns differently. This is why we offer seminars in a variety of formats. You can choose between in person and online seminars. We have both live and prerecorded options. We teach a live class each week. Both online and in-classroom students attend these sessions. If you opt for our online distance learning, you will still be able to interact with the class in the same way as a traditional student.

What You Can Expect From Us

To summarize, the 3 main steps to getting your license in almost every state are to:

  1. Submit an application
  2. Pass a Business Law exam
  3. Pass a Technical exam

The purpose of the application is to make sure you are registered in the state properly. This is so they can tax you and confirm that you have verifiable experience. The purpose of the Business Law exam is to make sure you understand the laws of operating a business in the state of New Mexico.

The purpose of the Technical exam is to make sure you have the skills and knowledge to do the types of work that you want to perform.

We supply the prep classes and the books and the tabs necessary to pass the OPEN BOOK EXAMS. Tabbing and Highlighting the books is allowed and part of our Curriculum. We have an extremely high first-time pass rate on our exams. If you do not pass, we will give you the class again for free until you do.

In New Mexico, we teach 2 different courses. The New Mexico Business Law Prep class and also the New Mexico GF-8 for transmission lines, Tanks and Substations

We have helped over 30,000 contractors get their contractors license. We look forward to helping you too.

Ready to learn more? Don’t hesitate to call us today! You can reach us at 804-556-5518.

If you perform contracting work outside of the state of New Mexico then you may want to consider the NASCLA license.

Here is a List of States that Accept the NASCLA License:

Alabama - Commercial only

Arizona - Commercial only

Arkansas - Commercial and Residential – No Business Law exam required

Georgia - Commercial and Residential

Louisiana - Commercial and Residential

Mississippi - Commercial and Residential

Nevada - Commercial only

North Carolina - Commercial and Residential - No Business Law exam required

Oregon - Commercial and Residential - exemption from 16-hour BCL Pre-license

South Carolina - Commercial and Residential

Tennessee - Commercial only

US Virgin Islands - Commercial and Residential

Utah - Commercial and Residential

Virginia - Commercial only

West Virginia - Commercial and Residential

 

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I use the NASCLA license in New Mexico?

No. The state of New Mexico does not accept the NASCLA license

 

Is there a continuing education requirement?

In most cases, no. There is no continuing education requirement to renew your license. You just need to renew it every 3 years by the 15th day of the month it was issued in.

But there are continuing education requirements for the plumbing and electrical contractor licenses that you’ll need to take before you can renew your license.

 

Is the Qualified Party Application the same as the license application?

No, they are different applications. You’ll need to complete the Qualified Party application before you can move on to the license application.

You can find information on the Qualified Party application here, and the New Mexico Contractor License Application here.


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