How to get a Swimming Pool Contractor License

Florida Residential Pool and Spa contractor is a contractor whose scope of work involves, but is not limited to, the construction, repair, and servicing of a residential swimming pool, or hot tub or spa, regardless of use. The scope of work includes the installation, repair, or replacement of existing equipment, any cleaning or equipment sanitizing that requires at least a partial disassembling, excluding filter changes, and the installation of new pool/spa equipment, interior finishes, the installation of package pool heaters, the installation of all perimeter piping and filter piping, and the construction of equipment rooms or housing for pool/spa equipment, and also includes the scope of work of a swimming pool/spa servicing contractor.

The scope of such work does not include direct connections to a sanitary sewer system or to potable water lines. The installation, construction, modification, or replacement of equipment permanently attached to and associated with the pool or spa for the purpose of water treatment or cleaning of the pool or spa requires licensure; however, the usage of such equipment for the purposes of water treatment or cleaning does not require licensure unless the usage involves construction, modification, or replacement of such equipment. Water treatment that does not require such equipment does not require a license. In addition, a license is not required for the cleaning of the pool or spa in a way that does not affect the structural integrity of the pool or spa or its associated equipment.

Below will describe the basic requirements for becoming in a licensed Swimming Pool/Spa Contractor:

  • Must be 18 years of age
  • Have good moral character. (A criminal incident in the past does not prevent you from getting a license so long as you have had your civil rights restored, all debts to society paid, no pending or current liens such as IRS, and have no pending or ongoing criminal litigation).
  • Creditworthy. (Applicants will be subject to a credit report on both the applicant and the business with a preferred FICO score of a 660 or above. )
    • If you do not meet the 660 FICO score, you CAN still get your license by posting a licensing bond.
      • Bond amounts vary based on whether the applicant is a Division I or Division II contractor, however, this amount can be reduced by 50% upon taking a board-approved financial responsibility course.
      • Four years of general construction experience.  (See below for experience details)

4 years of necessary experience:

You must have 4 years of general construction experience, however, up to 3 years of experience can be substituted by years spent in college (1 year of college is considered approximately 30 credit hours).  The college courses can be ANY college-level courses and do not need to be in the construction field.  If you have a four-year college degree, you qualify as having 3 years of general construction experience.  The 4th year of general construction experience must be acquired through gaining field experience in the license category that you are applying for.  For Swimming Pool/Spa Contractors, you must have been a foreman or supervisor that was involved in all aspects of construction, repair, water treatment and servicing of commercial/residential pools.

Important note about the experience:

Experience does not have to be gained in Florida or even the USA so long as it can be verified and notarized by a State Certified Florida Licensed General Contractor, State Certified Swimming Pool Contractor, Architect, or Engineer that will attest to the fact that they personally know you, and have direct knowledge of your involvement in construction projects that meet the experience requirements for Swimming Pool/Spa Contractors as described above.  This verifier does not have to be your employer.

You do not have to have the necessary experience before you take the exam.  In fact, after passing the state exam you have up to 4 years to gain the necessary experience to become a licensed Swimming Pool/Spa Contractor.