If you live in the state of California and are planning on having a pool installed, then there are several things that you should take into consideration before deciding on which company you want to hire to do the job.
The following few important factors regarding Swimming Pool Contractor Bonds in your state will help you to make the right choice before signing on the dotted line.
What Bond is required to build a pool and spa in California?
To acquire a Swimming Pool Contractor Bond in this state, the person is required by law to be in possession of a valid license as issued by the Contractors State License Board/CSLB, for jobs costing $500 or more. Contractors who have a C-53 Swimming Pool License are allowed to build spas, hot tubs, and swimming pools.
If you are operating your swimming pool company as an LLC an additional $100,000 LLC employee worker bond is required in the State of California.
C-27 Landscape contractors, as well as General Building “B” contractors, are also authorized to contract for pool projects, but only if they are classified swimming pool specialists, or are subcontracted to a licensed C-53 contractor to do the actual job.
The only other specialty license bond required by the CSLB is a C-39 Roofing Contractor Bond.
Home Improvement Salespersons (HIS) are permitted by law to find, negotiate, sell, or implement contracts, including the construction and repair of swimming pools, but they must be CSLB registered.
Licensed contractors must abide by the law, pass a written trade exam, validate four years of experience at journey-level, pass a background inspection (including fingerprinting, since 2005), carry a valid contractors license bond, and be able to provide proof of Worker’s Compensation Insurance if required.
Before hiring a contractor, it is advisable to ask for proof of his license or HIS registration, as well as a valid ID photo.
It is essential that the contract between the contractor and homeowner contain the following:
To avoid any misunderstandings, make sure that you get all the project details in black and white, including:
• A description of the job and all materials and equipment that will be used should be included in the contract
• A plan and scale drawing showing the size, shape, and measurements of the pool, as well as equipment and construction specifications
• Examine all materials that are going to be used, together with their weight, amount, size, color, quality and brand names/numbers
• Restoration of landscaping and fences, clean up, and the removal of materials and debris are details that should also be included in the contract
• You may state in the contract too, areas where materials are not to be placed, as well as safety instructions concerning your children or pets
According to state lien laws, you could be forced by a contractor’s lien to pay twice for the same work, should the contractor fail to pay employees, for materials, or sub-contractors.
Contractors are exempt from this rule if they provide a lien and completion bond, a bond equivalent, a blanket performance bond, or a joint control agreement that covers full payment and performance of project materials and labor, which has been approved by the Registrar. It is advisable to get documentation from your contractor that he can use the exemption for your job before you give him more money than is required by state laws.
Your swimming pool contractor should include the following basics in the contract:
• Name, address, and CSLB license number
• Estimated dates when work will start and be significantly completed
• The contract price, as well as a description of work, materials, and equipment
• A list of payments for completed work (note that according to the law a deposit may not be more than $1000 or 10% of the total cost of the project, whichever is less)
• A description of what substantial commencement of work represents
• Documents proving that you have general commercial liability insurance, as well as the name of the insurance company
Finding the best Swimming Pool Contractor Company
Asking friends and family for referrals is a great way to find a good swimming pool contractor, as is getting suggestions from organizations like a swimming pool and spa association, or perhaps even your local builder’s exchange.
Get quotes from at least three different companies, and make sure that the contractor or HIS is indeed registered or licensed as required by law, has an excellent reputation, and is financially secure.
As far as insurance is concerned, Swimming pool contractors are welcome to contact us at any time for a quote. We are one of the best contractor insurance companies and will provide you with the best possible rates for all your bonding needs.