get nailed by an unscrupulous or unlicensed contractor. Before you
hire a contractor or sign a contract for home repair, call the
Contractors State License Board At 1-800-321-CSLB
Don’t be a
be aware that consumers have been targeted by scam artists posing as
Do deal only with
Don’t hire the
first contractor who comes along.
Do ask to see the
contractor’s “pocket license” or Home Improvement Sales
All contractors are issued pocket licenses that show the type of trade
for which they are licensed and the expiration date of the license.
Ask to see some additional form of identification so you know with
whom you are dealing.
urges consumers to follow these tips when dealing with a building
Don't rush into
decisions and don't hire the first contractor who comes along.
contractor's license by checking on-line at
Don't pay more
than 10 percent down or $1,000, whichever is less.
Don't pay cash,
and don't let the payments get ahead of the work.
Get three bids,
check references, and get a written contract.
Contact the CSLB
if you have a complaint against a contractor.
By law, all contractors who perform
work that totals $500 or more (labor and materials) must be licensed
by the CSLB.
- Hire only
licensed contractors and ask to see the license.
CALL THE CONTRACTORS BOARD
Do call the Contractors State License Board to verify the
information provided by the bidding contractor at 1-800-321-CSLB
(2752), or log onto the internet at
Be prepared with the contractor's name, license number and business
Do get at least three bids and ask for references of work the
contractor has completed in the local area.
Do request What You Should Know Before You Hire A Contractor,
a publication to help you make informed decisions when dealing with
contractors. Order by calling 1-800-321-CSLB (2752), or download an
order form on the internet at
Don’t pay cash.
Don’t let the payments get ahead of the work completed, and don’t
pay the full cost of the job up-front.
Do know how much to give as a deposit.
Under state law, when undertaking a home improvement or repair
job, contractors cannot ask for a deposit of more than ten percent
(10%) of the total cost of the job or $1,000 whichever is less --
unless the contractor provides a bond, approved bond equivalent, or
approved joint control ensuring completion of your contract. Any such
bond is in addition to the bond required of all contractors for
Do require a written contract and don’t sign it until you
fully understand the terms.
Before you sign a contract; Before you pay for repairs; Call the
Contractors State License Board toll-free: 1-800-321-CSLB or log
onto the internet at:
request, the Contractors State License Board provides information
about a contractor’s license, bond status, and workers’ compensation
as well as pending or prior legal actions.
If you want information about a contractor’s license status,
please call the Board’s toll-free telephone number,
1-800-321-CSLB(2752), or log onto the internet at www.cslb.ca.gov
Legal Action History
If you want information about a contractor’s license history and
pending or prior legal actions, please call the appropriate region
Office’s Legal Action Disclosure phone number:
Northern Region 916-255-4041 Southern Region
If you have a complaint against a contractor, call the Board at
1-800-321-CSLB (2752) and ask for a copy of “A Consumer Guide to
Filing Construction Complaints” and the complaint form.
tell if your contractor is licensed, in good standing, and in the
proper classification to fit your needs.
do more to protect yourself before hiring a contractor
than the Contractors State License Board can do to help after you’ve
been harmed. Call or check the web site for valuable information on
selecting a contractor.
The Contractors State License Board has offices throughout
California. For the telephone number and address of the office
nearest you, call the Board’s toll-free automated
information number: 1-800-321-CSLB or log onto the internet at
P.O. Box 26000, Sacramento, CA 95826.