How to Become an Electrician in New York

In order to become a licensed electrician in the state of New York you will need to comply with the various local regulations since the state doesn’t have a statewide requirement or licensing program.

There are so many counties, towns and municipalities within New York state so information is difficult to provide here in any concise manner. You should research the particular location, start with your local jurisdiction, in New York state where you are interested in being a licensed electrician. This way you can learn about the exam, fees, education requirements and other considerations before you pursue this career path in your particular area.

New York City Electrician License Information

Those wishing to become an electrician in the city of New York can find information here. You are in luck! We are providing this info for just NYC because it is the most populated city in the state. There are two types of electrician licenses for New York City which are issued by the city’s Buildings Department. You can get a master or a special license and the associated fees are as follows:

  • License Fee: $310.00
  • Renewal Fee: $60.00
  • Seal Renewal Fee: $30.00
  • Late Renewal Fee: $310.00
  • License Term: 1 year

Both NYC license types will incur the same fee structure as seen above.

Visit New York City’s Buildings Department for more information

Requirements to be an Electrician in NYC

Besides paying the associated fees to become a licensed electrician, NYC requires you to meet the following qualifications:

You must be 18 years of age;

You must be able to read, write and comprehend English at a reasonable level;

You must also have a good moral character;

You must decent level of physical fitness to perform your duties either as a master or special electrician;

Finally, you also must have 7.5 years of experience or more, or an equivalent inside of 10 prior years to the application date with at least 10,500 working hours in installation, alteration and repair of wiring & appliances for electric light, heat and power in or on buildings or comparable facilities.

This electrical experience must be obtained either under the direct supervision of a department-licensed master electrician or from a special electrician or the direct supervision of a person with comparable qualifications which are to be determined by NYC’s Buildings Commissioner. See their website for more details as this is a key requirement.

NYC Exam Information

The city of New York has its own written exam for those wishing to become electricians within the city limits. First, you must complete an test application and submit it with a $525 fee, this is a very high cost, to the Buildings Department. Once you pass the written test, you need to apply for the other part known as the practical exam. This requires another exam application and a fee of an additional $350, unfortunately pricey, which is only payable by money order.

The address is listed below for your convenience:

NYC Department of Buildings
Licensing Unit – Exams
280 Broadway, 6th Floor
New York, NY 10007

You need to have your examination scheduled but only after your application is accepted by the city. You will know this when you receive an email from the test administrator within 4 weeks from the date you summited it. They will provide you with specific instructions regarding the scheduling of your exam. These tests are held in various locations around the city which is great.

The written exam is made up of multiple-choice questions which assess your understanding of NYC’s administrative codes. You aren’t allowed to use any study or reference materials while taking the test. If you actually pass the exam, you should get a letter telling you of the good news. This can take awhile so be patient while New York City processes your results.

NYC Electrician Considerations

If you choose to become an electrician in New York City you are likely to command a high rate of pay so the high cost to apply would pay off for you. Once you become more skilled and are able to work for yourself, you can easily make over $200,000 per year or more. The city is old and affluent, for the most part, which is highly attractive for electrical workers.

Obviously Manhattan is the wealthiest of the city’s 5 boroughs which means if you can get work there you will do extremely well. Don’t forget that due to the close proximity to New Jersey you may want to research that state’s requirements as well.

Be an Electrician in NY

Final Note on NY State

New York’s Division of Code Enforcement & Administration, located in Albany, is only tasked for dealing with completed electrical jobs and setting standards for work. Again, you must refer to your local jurisdiction to get accurate information on becoming an electrician in the state of New York. Best of luck on your new career choice in either New York state or NYC!