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March 22, 2023

How to Get a Roofing License in Ontario

In Canada, the roofing industry is currently worth $13.2 billion and is only expected to rise in the coming years. This is because of the boom in the construction industry and the simultaneous need for more skilled tradespeople to replace the aging workforce.

Roofers are one of the most in-demand jobs in the country with most expected to earn anywhere between $71,200 and $110,400 per year. But, before starting your own roofing business or work as a roofer for another company, you’ll need to meet the license requirements in your province or territory.

Here are some steps you can take to start your own roofing business. Since laws change regularly, it’s always important to do research on the newest updates. As of 2023, these are the steps for getting a roofing license in Ontario

Get Your Documentation In Order

Becoming a licensed roofer in Ontario requires dedication and hard work, but it will provide you with a rewarding career in the construction industry. 

Before you can achieve all of this, you must meet all of the requirements needed to obtain a license. This will also ensure you’re providing high-quality roofing services to your clients in a safe and skilled manner.

However, you need to familiarize yourself with important terms—registering, getting a license, obtaining certification—that might confuse you if you’re not careful.

Construction workers fixing a residential building

1. Complete Training and/or Apprenticeships

To earn a license, you have to complete extensive training or an apprenticeship, and then pass one or more examinations after these have concluded. Sometimes the applicant would also need to pass a background check or provide a character reference. Completing this process often costs money. 

2. Get Registered 

Registering doesn’t involve the need to pass an exam or prove your skills to the government. Usually, this is also free. However, being registered isn’t an endorsement of your skills. 

Registries are usually for the purpose of keeping track of roofing businesses to see if they have the proper insurance and are paying taxes.

3. Obtaining Certification 

If you have a certification, this typically means you’ve improved your skill to a specific level. For instance, many provinces offer asbestos certifications to ensure roofers know how to handle this dangerous material in a safe manner. 

However, certificates do not cover the whole range of skills that a roofer needs, so the government or a third party might offer them on a voluntary basis. Getting a certification will usually cost money as well.

How to Get Your Roofing License in Ontario 

In general, you might need to complete an apprenticeship first or a training program that covers the technical and safety aspects of roofing. You can complete an apprenticeship by finding a certified roofing contractor that is willing to train you.

Through the apprenticeship, you’ll gain practical experience in the roofing industry. The amount of experience required will depend on the type of license you are seeking. Check your local laws and regulations for more information.

Next, you need to pass the licensing exam. This comes after you have completed your training and gained practical experience. Once you’ve passed the exam, you’ll obtain a license.

A roofer working on a project

How to Start a Roofing Company in Ontario 

After getting a license, you can plan how to start your roofing business. Here are some helpful tips: 

  1. Develop a business plan: This is essential for any business because it will help you identify your target market, set financial goals, and act as your guide as you figure out other important aspects along the way. You can find resources and templates for creating a business plan online, or you may want to consider working with a business advisor to help you create a plan.
  2. Register your business: You must register your roofing business in the area where you plan to operate it. When registering, you need to choose a business name, determine your business structure (either as a sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation, etc.), and obtain other necessary licenses and permits.
  3. Stay updated: Be aware of the building codes and regulations of the properties that you’ll be working on, as well as the permits you need before you can start a project.
  4. Obtain insurance: As a roofing contractor, you need to have liability insurance to protect yourself and your clients. It’s important to consider additional types of insurance, such as worker’s compensation insurance and property insurance, to ensure you’re protected against financial losses.
  5. Hire employees: If you plan to build out your business, you should hire reliable employees. But to do so, you’ll need an employer identification number (EIN). You will also need to comply with employment standards, including minimum wage, workplace safety regulations, and the required insurance coverage for your staff.
  6. Obtain necessary equipment: Invest in equipment such as roofing materials, safety equipment, and vehicles that can transport heavy machinery to and from job sites.
  7. Market your business: Marketing your business is essential for attracting new clients. Create a website, use social media, and advertise in local newspapers or directories. Consider networking with other contractors or industry professionals to build connections and gain referrals.

Starting a roofing company in Ontario can be challenging, but with careful planning, hard work, and commitment, you can build a successful and profitable business. 

Protect Your Roofing Business With Contractors Insurance 

When you obtain a roofing license in Ontario and kickstart your business, make sure you’re protected with reliable insurance policies. 

Contractors Insurance is an award-winning commercial insurance brokerage based in Ontario. We specialize in providing personalized insurance coverage for a wide variety of clients, including contractors, tradespeople, and other professionals.

We are comprised of dedicated insurance experts that are ready to provide the highest calibre of service to our clients. We make it a point to understand the unique insurance needs of your business and provide you with tailor-fit insurance solutions with no unnecessary riders.

Get peace of mind knowing that you and your business are protected from unexpected situations. Contact us today to get started with a quick quote!


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