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General Contractors in Columbus, Ohio – “License and Registration”

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By Compton Staff

What does it mean to be a licensed General Contractor?

In construction, you have probably heard that it is important to work with a Licensed General Contractor.  But do you know what that really means?

What is a general contractor licences, and what does that allow them to do?

In Columbus, Ohio, there are several different types of general contractor license that permit companies to do different things. The different licenses ensure that contractors have the experience and knowledge required to safely and accurately perform work. However, each license is slightly different, and there are limitations and differences among them.

Take a look below at how the Building and Zoning Department, for the City of Columbus, defines each contractor, and what they mean in relation to Compton Construction.

What is a “General Contractor”?

With a “General Contractor License” a contractor is permitted to to perform construction of new structures or buildings (excluding accessory structures and garages for existing 1, 2, and 3 family dwellings), and/or make structural additions, alterations or repairs to existing commercial or multifamily dwellings.

In addition,  a General Contractor may coordinate and manage the modification, alteration, or repair of existing 1, 2 and 3 family dwellings. They are required to subcontract all work to City of Columbus licensed Home Improvement, Mechanical, Electrical and Plumbing Contractors that will perform the work with their own hands or see that the work is properly accomplished under their direct supervision

Compton Construction holds this General Contractor license.

What is a “Home Improvement Contractor”?

Licensed “Home Improvement Contractors” are permitted to make structural alterations, additions or repairs to existing 1, 2, and 3 family dwellings, and construct accessory structures and/or garages for 1, 2, and 3 family dwellings. A Home Improvement Contractor will do things like renovate a kitchen, replace a roof, or make other home improvements.

At Compton Construction, we do not perform residential improvement projects, but have partners that are excellent in this area of construction.

What is a “Demolition Contractor”?

A “Demolition Contractor” is permitted to preform work involving the demolition of any building or structure.

When we start a new adaptive reuse project, or go into an old building, Compton Construction will hire a Demo Contractor to start the job off. Typically, we can get a Removal Start Permit, which allows us to hire a Demolition Contractor and get the building demo started, while final planning is still ongoing. This allows for better scope planning, through existing condition discovery, and gets the project started earlier.

What is a “OCILB Contractor”?

“OCILB” stands for Ohio Construction Industry Licensing Board. To work in the City of Columbus, an Electrical, HVAC, Refrigeration, Hydronics, and/or Plumbing contractor must be licensed in Ohio.

When you work with Compton Construction, we hire subcontractors that specialize in specific areas of construction to preform the work. Our role is to oversee that each subcontractor performs their scope in an accurate and orderly fashion. However, each OCILB Contractor we use is the ultimate expert in their respective scope.

What is a “General Sign Erector”?

“General Sign Erectors” perform work on the erection, maintenance, and removal of any permanent exterior sign.

A General Sign Erector is another subcontractor of Compton Construction. When a project needs a sign, we help coordinate the design and installation of the sign. Often times, it will require additional electric for lighting, and structure for mounting. Our role is working with all parties to ensure the sign ultimately gets installed appropriately.


Each license serves a unique and specific purpose. Depending on the work required on your job, we will help you determine who to work with. Compton Construction is looking forward to hearing about your project. 

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