Get a licence!

Hi, I just thought I would ask if window cleaners in some parts of the USA have to pay their local authorities or councils for a licence in order to carry out window cleaning work.
In England and Wales we do not, but in Scotland they do. In Scotland you would have to pay for a licence which could be around 200 dollars upwards. Not only would you have to pay for a licence in the area you live and wanted to work in, you would then have to buy a licence in each additional area you were intending to work in.

Imagine living on a boarder of two Scottish counties!!

That is not all. If you owned a Limited company, the Ltd company would have to buy a licence for each area it operates in and then each window cleaner working for the company would also need a licence in each area they would be working in.

The UK is divided as to wether they feel licensing window cleaners works or not. Me? I feel the system is unfair but the principles and ideas behind it understandable.

So does that happen in the US or Canada?


Hey Lee,

No not currently. Of course each state has its own laws, but so far window cleaning is mabey too easy to get into. :slight_smile:

Where I live in NY State no. Counties closer to NY City yes. When I was in Myrtle Beach every county and every city required a license.

none here in MN

Many US municipalities require one to purchase a business – not WC’ing-specific – license/permit in order to conduct business there.

There was a period of time in California that a window cleaner providing $600 or more of post-construction cleaning required a state contractor’s license.

Hi Jeremiah,
do you see that as a bad thing?

Wow. So that too would mean a lot of dollars if you serviced multi areas. Is that fair? Why is it some areas do and some areas dont? What factors
makes a County decide, what are they baseing their decision on because if its not based on hard data such as crime rates etc. isnt it just a tax on job?

Hi could you explain a little more about purchasing a licence in order to buy a business in your area. We have a thing here in the UK too where you have to sign up to whats called CIS registration with the Inland Revenue. The CIS is for the construction trade, so if you were carrying out window cleaning builders cleans this would fit into this, however, this is different to the actual specific licensing of window cleaning as a job or trade.

I am close to NYC and all you need is insurance. No license required.

The license/permit is not for the purchase of a business, but rather a tax for the opportunity to conduct business within the boundaries of the specific municipality. Not all cities/towns/villages require a license/permit.

My mother, for instance, used to sell hand-made crafts at small shows in her neighboring city. Some municipalities required her to pay a nominal fee ($5-100USD) – in addition to her requirement to collect sales tax – in order to participate. Many municipalities have a sliding scale dependent upon gross sales.

Again, the above is not WC’ing-specific.

John you don’t need a contractors license? Is that because you don’t do any repair work? I know people on Long Island and Westchester county that have to get a license.

I am in Rockland Co. The ONLY 2 jobs that don’t require a license is window & Gutter cleaning. PowerWashing is my main service so I do have a contractor’s Lic. But for Window & gutter cleaning nope. I personally inquired with the cunsumer protection agency ( they give the Licence’s out here ). Believe it or not just to cut grass you need a Lic. Go figure.

Amazing no contractor license required here. Just electricians and plumbers and they are city licensed.

[quote="“Lee Burbidge:168231”]

Hi Jeremiah,
do you see that as a bad thing?[/QUOTE]

It depends really. For the bucket Bobs, yes it is a bad thing. Because anyone with a windshield squeegee can claim to be a “professional” window cleaner around here. It would be nice if some license for a reasonable fee was needed to conduct a legitimate business. Just my .02.

I think we should be licensed. Get rid or at least make it hard for the rif raf that’s around. If we can take the time & trouble to run a legitimate business so should everyone else. Just sayin

NC requires a license in every county you conduct business as well. The price of renewal also fluctuates depending upon how much the company makes in a year. Does this also happen everywhere that requires a license?

I think we are talking about 2 different types of licenses here. Contractor license which requires you to register as a contractor possibly take a test. Usually a set annual fee.

Business license required by some counties and cities fee usually based on amount of business you do in that municipality. In Myrtle Beach I needed a Horry County Business license, Myrtle Beach City, Conway City, Surfside City,etc etc business license. I had to track each area individually. What a pain in the a$$

Yeah it was the business license that I was referring to :slight_smile:

In San Diego a business license is required, for every separate city you work in within the county. I’m sure all the knuckleheads we have cleaning windows in San Diego follow that rule

Fully agree