Building & Renovating

Hiring a Contractor

Tips to consider when selecting a contractor

  • Ensure the contractor has a valid trade licence
  • Do not get pressured into signing anything
  • Always get a written estimate and at least three quotes
  • Get a fully itemized estimate and make sure the details are written into a contract
  • Get other quotes if you are asked to give a down payment of more than 5% to 15% of the total contract price
  • Determine if the job requires a Building Permit. It is your responsibility to get a Building Permit, if you need one, before you start construction

Licensed contractors

All contractors must have a valid Trade and Contractor Licence to operate in Hamilton.

Trades that require a licence include:

  • Building repair contractors such as roofers, carpenters, bricklayers, concrete workers, window and door installers, siding contractors and foundation waterproofing contractors
  • Drain contractors
  • Plumbing contractors
  • Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning contractors
  • Fire sprinkler installer contractors

In order to get a valid licence, contractors go through a process to ensure they have:

  • Police criminal check
  • Third party liability insurance

When you apply for a Building Permit, you must provide the licence number of the contractor who is doing the work.

Listing of licensed contractors

View our Open Data list of Licensed Contractors. Looking for a specific contractor? Use the filter tools to enter a name to search the listing online.

Contractor inspections

The City usually only investigates contractors if a complaint is made. If we receive a complaint of anyone operating without a valid licence, we ensure compliance with Hamilton’s Licensing By-Law No. 07-170.

Inspectors can carry out random spot checks to see if a contractor is operating with a proper licence.