How to Get an HVAC License in Tennessee

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Surety Bond Professionals is a family-owned and operated bonding agency with over 30 years of experience. With access to a broad range of surety markets, our expert agents are ready to assist with all of your Tennessee HVAC license bond needs. Learn how to get an HVAC license in Tennessee, below.

What HVAC Licenses Are Issued in Tennessee?

Tennessee issues an HVAC/Refrigeration contractor (CMC-C) license. According to the Tennessee Department of Commerce and Insurance, Contractor Licensing Board, one is required for those who “need to pull permits for projects limited to heating, ventilation, and air conditioning.” A CMC-C license, which is a type of mechanical contractor’s license, allows the licensee to install and maintain heating and air conditioning units including geothermal HVAC equipment, as well as refrigeration units

What Are the Steps in the Licensing Process?

Prior to applying for a CMC-C license, you’ll need to meet certain age, education, and experience requirements. You’ll also need to pass both the Tennessee HVAC/Refrigeration exam and the Tennessee Business/Law exam.

When you submit your application for a Tennessee HVAC/Refrigeration contractor’s license, you’ll need to submit certain supporting documents along with it, specifically:

  • Financial statements
  • A letter of recommendation
  • Proof of general liability insurance
  • Proof of workers’ compensation insurance if you will be hiring employees
  • Payment of the license fee

Under certain circumstances, depending on the size of the projects you are approved to accept, you may also need to purchase an HVAC contractor’s license bond.

Why is an HVAC Contractor’s License Bond Required?

Certain municipalities in Tennessee require HVAC contractors working on residential or commercial projects in their jurisdiction to purchase a surety bond. The bond protects the local licensing or permitting authority and the public from financial harm.

The bond serves as a licensed HVAC contractor’s guarantee to operate in accordance with the laws governing HVAC contracting. The bond indemnifies the licensing/permitting authority against liability for damages caused by the contractor’s violation of the terms of the surety bond agreement. The bond also ensures that funds will be available for compensating any injured that has experienced a financial loss as a result of the HVAC contractor’s unlawful or unethical actions.

How Are Tennessee HVAC Contractor’s License Bond Claims Paid?

An HVAC contractor’s license bond is a legally binding contract that brings together three parties:

  • The “obligee” requiring the bond
  • The “principal” purchasing the bond
  • The “surety” approving the bond

The principal alone is legally obligated to pay valid claims against the bond. However, the surety will often pay a claim initially to ensure prompt compensation of the claimant. That payment is made on behalf of the principal, and the principal is legally required to repay the resulting debt to the surety.

How Much Does a Tennessee HVAC Contractor’s License Bond Cost?

To determine how much you will pay for your license bond, multiply the bond amount established by the obligee by the premium rate assigned by the surety. The surety determines the premium rate on a case-by-case basis depending on how risky it would be to pay claims on the principal’s behalf. The main factor considered is the bond applicant’s personal credit score.

The better your credit, the lower your premium rate. If your credit is good, you could pay a premium rate that’s as low as one to three percent of the required bond amount.

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Our surety bond professionals will get you the Tennessee HVAC license bond you need at a competitive rate.