Tools & Resources
Whether you live or build in the Interior... or both, you'll find valuable information here.
Interior Alaska Relocation & Buyer's Guide
We know a big move can be daunting and we are here to help. Look no further than the Interior Alaska Relocation & Buyers Guide to find what you need - from safety information to school districts, home builders to chimney sweeps, auto mechanics to salons - even your nearest hunting or fishing outfitters.
Complete with a comprehensive business and agency directory (the Buyer's Guide) and a Cold Climate Library, you're sure to find the tools and resources to get comfortable in the Interior.
Have a project? Submit your project or proposal to our office with the Subject Line "Builder Connect" and get connected with multiple qualified contractors in one message!
Building or Buying - Early Stages
Did you hire someone already?
1) Your first question should be "Is my contractor licensed?" Ensure your contractor is licensed in the state of Alaska.
If you had a bad experience with a contractor or an unlicensed handyman, please submit
2) Make informed decisions before you begin. Go to
to calculate energy usage of your appliances, download a contractor checklist, and learn more about what it means to build green in the Interior.
and other great stuff!
3) Spend time on ALASKA HOUSING FINANCE CORPORATION's website to learn about energy rebates and other financing programs that you may have access to- even with local banks in the Fairbanks and North Pole areas.
4) Check out our Home Construction Directory to hire a licensed, bonded, and insured contractor in the Interior.
Contractor Hiring Checklist
Doing your homework will help you have a more successful experience.
Use this checklist to help you select a home builder or home remodeler to work on or build your home:
Search for a builder or remodeler who is a member of the IABA. Our members are licensed, bonded & insured. Also ask family, friends or coworkers for recommendations.
Make sure the builder or home remodeler has a permanent business location and a good reputation with local banks and suppliers.
Ask the contractor for their Alaska Business License number, their bond, and insurance information- the law that requires contractors be licensed, bonded, and insured protects you.
Find out how long they have been in the building business. It usually takes three to five years to establish a financially sound business. You want to make sure they will be around after the construction is complete to service any warranties.
Check out the company’s rating and if there have been any complaints filed with your local Better Business Bureau: www.bbb.org.
Make sure the builder/remodeler has sufficient workers compensation and general liability insurance. If not, you may be liable for any construction-related accidents on your premises.
Ask the builder/remodeler to provide you with names of previous customers. If they won’t, beware. If they do, ask the customers if they would hire the builder/remodeler again.
Ask if you can see the builder/remodelers work, both completed and in progress. Check for quality of workmanship and materials.
Do you feel you can easily communicate with the builder/remodeler? Remember you will be in close contact with them throughout the construction process and afterward as you live in your new home.
Make sure the builder/remodeler provides you with a complete and clearly written contract. The contract will benefit both of you. If you are having a new home built, get and review a copy of the home warranty and homeowner manual as well.
Be cautious of unusually low-priced bids. If the builder/remodeler is unable to pay for the materials and labor as the project proceeds, this may indicate a potential problem. Keep in mind that less expensive does not necessarily mean better!
Letters after names are officially called “post-nominal letters.” They can be earned for a number of accomplishments. Like every profession, there are some Fly-by-Night, Hack contractors that give our industry a bad name. Nothing causes the blood to boil more than when a professional builder, remodeler, or trade contractor hears a story of a home or business owner being burned by a con-artists or unskilled worker.
The scammers and “wanna-bes” bring down the reputation of the industry and of the true professional who believes their career honorable, takes pride in their knowledge of the latest codes & products, and maintains a high-level of continuous education as represented by post-nominal letters.
COMMON DEGREES, CERTIFICATIONS, DESIGNATIONS, AND RECOGNITION:
DBA – Doctor of Business Administration
M Arch – Master of Architecture
MBA – Master of Business Administration
PhD – Doctor of Philosophy
CAPS – Certified Aging -in-Place Specialist
CGB – Certified Graduate Builder
CGP – Certified Green Professional
CGR – Certified Graduate Remodeler
GMB – Graduate Master Builder
GMR – Graduate Master Remodeler
HCCP – Housing Credit Certified Professional
PMP – Project Management Professional
AIA – American Institute of Architects
AICP – American Institute of Certified Planners
CID – Certified Interior Designer
CKD – Certified Kitchen Designer
EIT – Engineer in Training
LA – Landscape Architect
LC – Lighting Certified
LEED AP – Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design Accredited Professional
LS – Land Surveyor
PE – Professional Engineer
RA – Registered Architect
SIT – Surveyor in Training
Lending & Accounting:
CMC – Certified Mortgage Consultant
CPA – Certified Public Accountant
CRMS – Certified Residential Mortgage Specialist
GMA – General Mortgage Associate
Real Estate Sales:
ABR – Accredited Buyer’s Representative
CCIFP – Certified Construction Industry Financial Professional
CMP – Certified New Home Marketing Professional
CSP – Certified New Home Sales Professional
GAA – General Accredited Appraiser
MIRM – Master in Residential Marketing
RAA – Residential Accredited Appraiser
Resources for Contractors
Contractor Licensing Resources
Click on any of the following resources to get more information:
When you work in the building industry, you need to be aware of how to protect yourself and your company from on-the-job accidents and injuries. Spend a moment on the Divison of Labor Standards and Safety webpage, then follow some of their Quick Links to see OSHA's Safety Pays calculator and more.
General Liability Insurance
IABA Members should check out
General Liability Insurance through the ALASKA BUILDERS INSURANCE COMPANY.
The Alaska Builders Insurance Program is an Alaskan-owned, exclusive general liability insurance program with preferential rates only for members of local home building associations throughout Alaska.
The program intends to reduce policy expenses for our members by minimizing the impact of insurance trends happening in the Lower 48.
Contractor and subcontractor members in good standing may qualify.
There is no minimum or maximum number (#) of employees necessary to qualify.
Benefits of the program include:
Stability of Pricing
Affordability of coverage.
Coverages that are restricted or unavailable elsewhere in Alaska.
Policyholders become minority shareholders in the program.
You may keep your current insurance broker.