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Owner Builder Exam

You must pass this exam on home-building basics as part of your application for an Owner Builder Authorization.

As an owner builder, you must manage the construction of your own house. Studying for the Owner Builder Exam will expand your knowledge, improve the quality of owner-built homes, and enhance protection for subsequent homeowners.

The exam tests your understanding of home-building basics in two competency areas:

  • Construction basics
  • The statutory obligations and requirements that owner builders must meet under the Homeowner Protection Act

Our Owner Builder Study Guide gives a detailed breakdown of those two areas, helps you prepare for the exam, explains how and where to schedule it, and answers commonly asked questions.

Watch our Regulatory Obligations for Owner Builders in British Columbia video to learn how to successfully answer the statutory obligations and requirements section of the exam.

Learning options

Several colleges and industry associations offer courses, in varying levels of detail, on building code, construction technology, and construction management.

Search our Education Registry to find courses in your area that can help you build your knowledge to prepare for the exam.

Where and when to take the exam

Once we’ve determined you’re eligible to take the exam, you must schedule your exam session at one of the regional test centres across B.C. You can take the exam at any test centre that’s most convenient for you. These centres are situated in educational institutions and other types of public organizations. 

Test centres schedule exams on a regular basis: weekly, bi-weekly or monthly, depending on where you choose. Take a look at the Owner Builder Exam Schedule. We will also send you a schedule of exams taking place in your area.

Taking the exam

Only the owner builder applicant is authorized to take the exam. You must attend the exam in person and show the same government-issued ID that you provided on your application.

You take the exam on a computer. Make sure you bring the login credentials that we provide you with notification that you’re eligible to take the exam.

You have 100 minutes to complete the 100 multiple-choice questions. Manage your time carefully.

You cannot consult any reference materials or electronic devices while taking the exam. The passing score is 70 percent or higher.

Final assessment

After you’ve completed the exam, our Licensing department will conduct a final review of your application. We will then notify you if your application for an Owner Builder Authorization has been approved. 

You only have one exam attempt per Owner Builder Authorization application. If you don’t pass the exam and we don’t approve your application, we will notify you and issue a $375 refund within 30 days.