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What is Home Improvement? - Home Improvement Commission

The Home Improvement Law defines "home improvement" as the addition to or alteration, conversion, improvement, modernization, remodeling, repair, or replacement of a building or part of a building that is used or designed to be used as a residence or dwelling place or a structure adjacent to that building; or an improvement to land adjacent to the building. For more information, please call MHIC at 410-230-6309 or e-mail DLOPLMHIC-DLLR@maryland.gov.

In each residence built prior to 1978, the EPA requires anyone performing renovation, repair or painting projects that disturb lead-based paint to obtain an EPA certification and follow-lead safe work practices. Contractors must (1) provide a copy of EPA's lead hazard information pamphlet to the occupants; (2) contain the work area; (3) minimize dust; (4) clean up thoroughly; and (5) document compliance. This rule applies to any renovation, demolition, or paint project that affects six square feet of interior space or 20 square feet of exterior space. For more information, visit the EPA website.

Type of work usually required to be licensed by the the Maryland Home Improvement Commission
(not all inclusive)

Interior of Residence

  • Carpentry
  • Central vacuum systems
  • Built-in closet organizers
  • Marble
  • Home theatre construction
  • Painting
  • Plastering

Exterior of Residence

  • Awnings
  • Bricklaying
  • Driveways
  • Excavating
  • Fences
  • Flagstone
  • Grading
  • Gravel driveways
  • Gutters and downspouts
  • House structural lifting & reattachment
  • Landscaping
  • Painting
  • Patios
  • Paving
  • Masonry pointing
  • Sidewalks
  • Siding
  • Railings
  • Roofs
  • Sod (when landscaping)
  • Stairs
  • Stucco

Accessibility Features

  • Chair lifts for stairs
  • Overhead lift systems (permanently mounted)
  • Ramps

Cleaning and Treatments

  • Acid treatment
  • Acoustical treatment (permanently mounted)
  • Lead paint abatement
  • Radon gas mitigation
  • Sandblasting
  • Sealants
  • Waterproofing

Doors and Windows

  • Doors
  • Screens
  • Skylights
  • Stained glass
  • Shutters (exterior)
  • Storm doors
  • Storm windows
  • Window tinting
  • Windows

Energy Conservation

  • Insulation
  • Solar panel systems
  • Windmills

Fire

  • Chimney repairs
  • Fire alarm systems
  • Fire escapes
  • Fireplaces

Floors and Walls

  • Caulking
  • Ceilings
  • Drywall
  • Floating floors
  • Linoleum
  • Paneling
  • Terrazzo
  • Tile
  • Wallpapering
  • Wall coverings (permanent)
  • Floor coverings (carpet not included)

Metal/Stone/Marble (exposed)

  • Metal
  • Masonry
  • Ornamental railings
  • Stone/Stone-cast

Kitchen and Bath

  • Bathroom
  • Cabinets
  • Kitchen
  • Shower and bath enclosures
  • Sinks and countertops
  • Tile
  • Vanities

Pools/Hot Tubs

  • Hot tubs - permanent
  • Pools
  • Pool covers
  • Pool houses

Structures

  • Carports
  • Club rooms
  • Decks
  • Fallout shelters
  • Foundations
  • Garages
  • Piers (non-marine)
  • Pole buildings
  • Porch enclosures
  • Porches
  • Retaining walls
  • Sunrooms

Revised December 2018