When building, renovating or repairing a swimming pool in Florida, homeowners must use a licensed contractor. It’s illegal to hire an unlicensed contractor, and a contract with one is not enforceable under law; that means owners have no legal recourse if they do not fulfill the agreement. In addition, unlicensed individuals may not be insured, with homeowners insurance forced to pay any work injuries.
Getting a pool license requires a background check, experience and/or education, and insurance. Certain core courses and a number of elective courses must be taken every two years to renew a license. If owners have a problem, they can file a complaint against the contractor’s license. A pool contractor’s license number can be checked at www.myflorida.org/dbpr.
Swimming pool/spa contractors are licensed in one of three different categories:
- Commercial pool/spa contractor: The scope of work involves, but is not limited to, the construction, repair and servicing of any swimming pool, hot tub or spa, whether public or private, regardless of use.
- Residential pool/spa contractor: The work involves, but is not limited to, the construction, repair and servicing of any residential swimming pool, or hot tub or spa.
- Swimming pool/spa servicing contractor: The work involves, but is not limited to, the repair and servicing of any swimming pool, hot tub or spa, whether public or private.
Any of the licenses include the ability to service a pool, along with other pool service certifications (i.e. Certified Pool Operator – CPO). However, those certified and not licensed cannot do any repairs.
To find a licensed pool professional by zip code, visit the Florida Pool Association’s website at: www.floridapoolpro.com/find_pool_pro/locator.asp.© 2010 Florida Realtors® Reprinted with permission.