How to Start a Roofing Business In California
There are a number of steps to take to start a roofing business in the state of California. You must do your own thorough research, as laws change regularly. Here are some steps you may have to take (not necessarily in order) to start your roofing and/or siding and gutter company, along with links to more information.
Getting started- California’s official website about how to start a business in California is found here: http://www.business.ca.gov/StartaBusiness.aspx
1. Register your business name.
Find out more about registering a fictitious name here: http://www.business.ca.gov/StartaBusiness/ChooseaFictitiousBusinessName.aspx . Your fictitious name must be registered with your county clerk. Find your county’s form here: http://www.business.ca.gov/StartaBusiness/CountyClerkandFBNForms.aspx
If you need help selecting a name for your roofing business: Choosing a Roofing Company Name
2. Select your business structure.
Sole-proprietor, LLC, Partnership, Corporation, etc. Find out more here: http://www.business.ca.gov/StartaBusiness/DefiningaBusiness.aspx
More on business structure: How To Select a Roofing Business Structure
3. Register your business.
You can register your business with the state of California here: http://www.business.ca.gov/StartaBusiness/RegisteringaBusiness.aspx
4. Open a Business Checking Account.
You will need to open a separate bank account for your business with your new business name.
5. Find out about taxes and hire an accountant.
You may want to file your own taxes if you are a small company. As you grow, it will be easier to have an accountant do the work. More info about taxes here: http://www.taxes.ca.gov/doingbus.shtml and http://www.irs.gov/Businesses/Small-Businesses-&-Self-Employed/Starting-a-Business
6. Get Liability Insurance.
Find an insurance agent that offers liability insurance. You may want to shop around, as prices and options can vary. Roofers have a higher risk than other types of contractors, so insurance costs will be more for roofers than landscapers, painters, etc.
More on liability insurance for roofers here: Roofing Liability Insurance
7. Register as a Contractor.
To become a roofing contractor, you must apply for a contractor’s license in the state of California. The registration application is found here: http://www.cslb.ca.gov/About_Us/Library/Forms_And_Applications.aspx .
8. Worker’s Compensation.
The insurance agency that provided your liability insurance should be able to help with this.
9. Get Health Insurance.
Since you will be self-employed, you will need your own health insurance. If you have employees, you will need a plan that will include their health needs also.
10. City License.
You may be required to obtain a license to do business in a particular locale, whether you are a resident, or not. http://www.business.ca.gov/StartaBusiness/RegisteringaBusiness/Locallicensesandpermits.aspx
Depending on the locale, you may need to apply for permits before commencing certain types of roofing jobs. http://www.business.ca.gov/StartaBusiness/RegisteringaBusiness/Locallicensesandpermits.aspx
12. Building Code and Inspections.
You must be aware of building codes for particular jobs, and may be subject to inspections.
Depending on how many employees you have, you may need to follow OSHA regulations. http://www.osha.gov