Becoming an Electrical Contractor

Becoming an Electrical Contractor

The City of Sioux Falls requires an "Electrical Contractor's License" of contractors doing electrical work within the city limits. If you plan to do electrical work on residential homes only, click the appropriate link on the right for Class B Electrician, Fire Alarm Contractor or Sign Wiring Contractor. Homeowners who live in and own a single family dwelling are not required to obtain a license, but must acquire electrical homeowner’s permits and would be responsible for electrical code compliance and obtaining required inspections.

In order to acquire this license, you must hold a State of South Dakota Electrical Contractor's License. Upon receipt of the state license, you may apply for examination with the City of Sioux Falls. This examination is a timed test, with closed and open book portions of the test based on City Electrical Ordinances and the National Electrical Code (see the instructions with the application for study suggestions). You will receive the City Electrical Ordinance folder upon application for exam (This folder is also available for purchase for $5.00). There is a $75.00 examination fee due upon application. This exam is offered once per month. Please review the examination application (2B25016 link on the right) for more information as well as the exam schedule.

Once the applicant has taken and passed the exam, he or she can then apply for the Electrical Contractor's License. Upon license application you must submit a $10,000 Compliance Bond (in addition to general electrical contractor’s work) and the appropriate license fees within 90 days of examination. Please review the license application (2B25002 link on the right) for more information.

Also available to individuals who have taken and passed exam is the "Inactive Electrical Contractor's License" (2B25002 link on the right). This license does not allow you to do work as a contractor, but does allow you to hold a current license with the city, allowing you to reinstate your contractor’s license without being required to retest.

For more information, you may contact Building Services at:

Electrical Contractors FAQs

The main objective is to protect the residents and properties in the city of Sioux Falls. Life safety is the number one goal! General knowledge of electrical work is needed to pass examination. Licensure assures protection of the contractor, the home or business owner, and the city.
No, the city of Sioux Falls does not reciprocate any licenses. The South Dakota Electrical Commission may be able to reciprocate your license, but once you receive your South Dakota state license you will still need to take and pass examination with the city before applying for the city license. You may contact the South Dakota Electrical Commission at for more information regarding state license requirements.
If you are doing any electrical work in the city of Sioux Falls, you must also carry the City of Sioux Falls license.
Electrical Contractor examination requires 75% or higher score for passing.
Please review the study suggestions on the examination application (2B25016 Link on the right) for more information
If you are receiving compensation for doing electrical work, even if part-time, you are required to hold a state and city Electrical Contractor’s or Class B license. All work must be inspected, and the inspections must be called in under an Electrical Contractor’s license.
This information can vary greatly! Please contact our electrical inspectors at 605-367-8250 and provide them with detailed information regarding the type of work. We will be able to answer your question in detail.

Separate licenses are required for each field (building, electrical, plumbing, and mechanical). There are examinations required for each field. Electrical and plumbing also require state licenses before applying for examination with the city.

Under no circumstances is an Electrical Contractor allowed to do any plumbing, mechanical or residential building work unless they also hold the appropriate, additionally required, licenses.

The first time you take an exam and fail, you are able to retest again in 30 days. Each time you fail the exam following, you must wait 90 days before you are able to retest.
You must retest if you do not apply for a license with 90 days of exam. It is recommended that you apply for Inactive Electrical Contractor before the 90 day deadline to avoid retesting, if not immediately applying for Electrical Contractor.
No, licenses must remain active by providing current bond (when required). Licenses also must be renewed every two years. If a license expires, it cannot be renewed after 12 months from expiration without re-examination, unless the Electrical Contractor has applied for and kept current his Inactive license.