Any individual who is involved with contracting and performs improvements, alterations, public work construction, commercial, or residential work must have a contractor license. A license will not be needed if an aggregate contract cost for the project, which will include taxes, materials, and labor, and will not cost over $1,000, as well as not needing a building permit. The exemption will not be applied for plumbing or electrical work that needs a permit.

How to Obtain a Hawaii Contractor License

  • Specialty Contractors
  • General Building Contractors (construction of a structure which involves 2+ unrelated building trades.)
  • General Engineering Contractors (fixed work, which includes power, water, bridges, highways,etc.)

Each applicant must do the following:

  1. Send in an application that includes a fee of $50. Send to the board prior to the 20th of the month, in order for it to be reviewed by the next month. Be sure that the below items are sent in with the application:
  2. Submit 3 or more certificates (must be notarized) and will be in support of supervisory experience. 
         b. Send in a financial statement(must be current) and should be signed and prepared by a certified accountant or licensed public accountant.
         c.  Send in a credit report (must be current) from a credit reporting agency that was issued no more than six months ago and covers the prior five years 
         d.  Send in a Hawaii State Tax Clearance ( must be current). Shouldn’t be more than six months old.  Must be with the original State Department of Taxation stamp.
         e. If you are seeking to use a specific tradename, you will be required to send in a copy that is filed-stamped of the current trade name registration, which is approved by the Business Registration Division of the Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs 

Send the completed application, documents, and fee(s) via mail to the following:

Contractors License Board

A copy of the contractor rules and laws should be obtained by sending in a written request via mail to the above address. You can also send it via the website at www.hawaii.gov/dcca/pvl. The more in depth forms and instructions can be found via the site.

  1. The board will notify the applicant of deferral/disapproval/approval.
    2.  The applicant who is approved will need to register with a different testing agency for the exam, as well as paying for the exam fees.
    3.  The applicant will then complete the exam the next month.
    4.  passing the examination, the board will notify the applicant of the requirements for licensure.
    5.  The applicant will then send in the license requirements, which is workers compensation insurance, property damage insurance, and proof of liability.
    6.  last step is to send in the fees for the licensure. The amount will be given.

After each step is met, the board will issue a licensure of the applicant. An individual inquiring a license should keep up the insurance coverage and the place of business.

Experience, Exam, and Education Requirements: Are There any Requirements for the State of Hawaii Contractor License?

Yes, the applicant needs to hold four years of supervisory experience from the past 10 years prior to sending in an application. They must also send in no less than three certificates for the support of supervisory experience for the application. Each certificate needs to be notarized. The specific technical training can be approved under acceptable experience. However, this should not count for more than one year for training experience.

Applicants are required to pass a written exam that covers the following:

Each applicant is required to pass the examination for the right classification. When receiving approval from the board, each applicant will need to provide the exam registration forms that need to be sent via mail along with exam fees to Prometric, a professional testing service.

Part 1: Business & Law
Part 2: Trade

Any questions that are about the exam, sitting for the exam within another state, or study material should be asked to Prometric, the testing agency: Phone:  (808) 261-8182 – www.prometric.com/hawaii

Hawaii Contractor Continued Education: Is it Required?

No. Each license, no matter the date of issuance, will expire on the date of September 20th during and even numbered year. The renewal application will need to be sent via mail around the date of August 15th during even numbered years. The individual seeking/holding a license needs to send in their renewal application, as well as all fees and documents by the date of September 30th during even numbered years. If the licensee fails to do this, the license will be terminated. The individual renewing the license has 60 days from the date of expiration to reverse the forfeited license. This can be done by sending in all required fees and documents, as well as a fee for late renewal. If the late fee is not collected, the individual may be treated as a new licensee.

NASCLA Accredited Commercial Contractor License: Is it Accepted Within the State of Hawaii?

No, it is not.

General Contractor Commercial Contractor: Does the State of Hawaii Require This License?

Yes, they do.

Does Hawaii Have Reciprocity With any Other States

No.  Each applicant is required to meet the same exam and licensure requirements.

General Building Contractor
Examination Outline
Closed Book
80 Questions – Four-hour time limit
75% Correct required to pass

Exam Topic                                                               %
Plan Reading and Estimating                                    8
Sitework                                                                     7
Concrete                                                                  12
Masonry                                                                     8
Metals                                                                        5
Carpentry                                                                 18
Thermal and Moisture Protection                            15
Doors and Windows                                                  8
Finishes                                                                   12
Safety                                                                        8 

The Contractor examination is offered monthly.  Exams are offered in Oahu and the neighbor islands of Maui, Kauai, and Big Island.  Walk-in testing available (on Oahu only) for an extra fee of $50.00.  For more information regarding the exam, see the candidate bulletin at www.prometric.com or call (808) 261-8182.

Question: How do I register my construction company in Hawaii? 

 Register your Hawaii Business With:

Department of Commerce and Consumer Affairs
PO Box 40
Honolulu, HI 96810


(808) 586-2744


What forms do I need to register my new company in Hawaii?

Register your Business in Hawaii                 

Forms   Tax Forms  


Question: How do I look up a company in Hawaii or see if a company name is available to register?  

Answer: Use this link to see if your company name is available in Hawaii Entity Search  

Where can I get the books?

AMAZON – Click on the book to order:

Design and Control of Concrete Mixtures

Design and Control of Concrete Mixtures
Excavation and Grading HandbookExcavation and Grading HandbookModern Masonry

Modern Masonry


OSHA Construction Regulations, 1926

OSHA Construction Regulations, 1926


Placing Reinforcing Bars

Placing Reinforcing Bars


The NRCA Waterproofing ManualThe NRCA Waterproofing Manual


Carpentry & Building Construction, Student Edition

Carpentry & Building Construction, Student Edition