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Do You Need a Surety Bond for Your Contractor's License?

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A Contractor License Surety Bond guarantees that taxes are paid to the state, labor and materials, wages and benefits, and sometimes even workmanship.

Each state has different license requirements, such as some states require that the licenses be obtained through a city or county, while others require them at a state level. Some states only require certain types of contractors be licensed, while others don't have a requirement at all. Various states require a surety bond in addition to the license and each state has bond language that covers specific obligations, such as ensuring tax or wage payments are made.

Many contractors have a misconception of what the surety bond covers. The bond is not insurance to cover a contract loss or protect against a lien. In some cases it can even be a penalty for non-payment of taxes or for negligent work. The bond is a requirement usually to protect a state against a loss. And if there is a loss through a claim, the surety that issued the bond will expect the contractor to repay the claimed amount.

Who Needs a Surety Bond for a Contractor License?

Contractor's in the following states may have a surety bond requirement.

  1. Alabama- $15,000 surety bond - Heating, Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Contractor (HVAC), Plumbing and Gas Fitting Contractor (Apply with the Board of Heating, Air Conditioning & Refrigerator Contractors)

  2. Alaska- $25,000 surety bond- General Contractor (GC), $10,000 bond- Mechanical Contractor, Specialty Contractor & Home Inspector, $20,000 surety bond- General Contractor with residential endorsement performing exclusively residential work, $5,000 surety bond- Contractors whose total contract price for a single project is less than $10,000 (Apply with the Division of Corporations, Business and Professional Licensing)

  3. Arizona- $200,000 Consumer Protection Surety Bond, The following bonds are based on completed gross volume of work: $9,000 -$15,000 surety bond- Residential General Contractor, $4,250 - $7,500 surety bond -Residential Specialty Contractor, $5,000 - $100,000 surety bond- Commercial General Contractor, $2,500 - $50,000 surety bond-Commercial Specialty Contractor (Apply with the Registrar of Contractors)

  4. Arkansas- $10,000 surety bond- Commercial Contractor (Apply with the Contractors Licensing Board), $10,000 surety bond (or more)- Water Well Contractor (Apply with the Water Well Construction Commission)

  5. California-$15,000 surety bond- General Engineering Contractor, General Building, Boiler, Hot-Water Heating, and Steam Fitting, Building Moving, Building Demolition, Cabinet, Millwork, and Finish Carpentry, Ceramic and Mosaic Tile, Concrete, Construction Zone Traffic Control, Drywall, Earthwork and Paving, Electrical, Elevator, Fencing, Fire Protection, Flooring and Floor Covering, Framing an Rough Carpentry, General Manufactured Housing, Glazing, Insulation and Acoustical, Landscaping, Lathing and Plastering, Limited Specialty, Lock and Security Equipment, Low Voltage Systems, Masonry, Ornamental Metal, Painting and Decorating, Parking and Highway Improvement, Pipeline, Plumbing, Refrigeration, Roofing, Sanitation System, Sheet Metal, Sign, Solar, Steel Reinforcing, Steel Structural, Swimming Pool, Warm-Air Heating, Ventilating, and Air-Conditioning, HVAC, Water Conditioning, Welding, Water Well Drilling (Apply with the Contractors State License Board)

  6. Florida-Surety bond amount with proof of Financial Responsibility Course- $10,000 surety bond for Division l or a $5,000 surety bond for Division ll. Surety bond amounts without course completion- $20,000 for Division l or $10,000 for Division ll. Class A Air Conditioning Contractor, Drywall, Division 1, Division 2, Residential Pool, Pool Servicing, Spa Servicing, Irrigation Specialty, Plumbing, Plummer, Financial Responsible Officer (Apply with the Construction Industry Licensing Board), Palm Beach County Contractor's Certification Bond

  7. Georgia- $25,000 surety bond- General Contractor, Residential Contractor (Apply with the Board for Residential and General Contractors)

  8. Hawaii- Surety bond amount is determined by the Board- Miscellaneous Retail Products Contractor, General Engineering, General Building, Acoustical and Insulation Contractor, Mechanical Insulation Contractor, Asphalt Paving and Surfacing Contractor, Asphalt Concrete Patching, Sealing and Striping Contractor, Play Court Surfacing Contractor, Boiler, Hot-Water Heating and Steam Fitting Contractor, Cabinet, Millwork, and Carpentry Remodeling and Repairs Contractor, Garage Door and Window Shutters Contractor, Siding Application Contractor, Carpentry Framing Contractor, Carpet Laying Contractor, Cesspool Contractor, Scaffolding Contractor, Drywall Contractor, Electrician Contractor, Sign Contractor, Electronic Systems Contractor, Fire and Burglar Alarm Contractor, Telecommunications Contractor, Elevator Contractor, Conveyor Systems Contractor, Excavating, Grading, and Trenching Contractor, Asbestos Contractor, Fire Protection Contractor, Fire Repressant Systems Contractor, Flooring Contractor, Glazing and Tinting Contractor, Glass Tinting Contractor, Gunite Contractor, Building Moving and Wrecking Contractor, Institutional and Commercial Equipment Contractor, Landscaping Contractor, Hydro Mulching Contractor, Tree Trimming and Removal Contractor, Masonry Contractor, Cement Concrete Contractor, Stone Masonry Contractor, Refractory Contractor, Tuckpointing and Caulking Contractor, Concrete Cutting, Drilling, Sawing, Coring and Pressure Grouting Contractor, Ornamental, Guardrail, and Fencing Contractor, Wood and Vinyl Fencing Contractor, Painting and Decorating Contractor, Wall Coverings Contractor, Taping Contractor, Surface Treatment Contractor, Soil Stabilization Contractor, Pile Driving, Pile and Caisson Drilling, and Foundation Contractor, Plastering Contractor, Lathing Contractor, Plumbing Contractor, Sewer and Drain Line Contractor, Irrigation and Lawn Sprinkler Systems Contractor, Vacuum and Air Systems Contractor, Water Chlorination and Sanitation Contractor, Treatment and Pumping Facilities Contractor, Fuel Dispensing Contractor, Post Tensioning Contractor, Refrigeration Contractor, Prefabricated Refrigeration Panels Contractor, Reinforcing Steel Contractor, Roofing Contractor, Aluminum and Other Metal Shingles Contractor, Wood Shingles and Wood Shakes Contractor, Concrete and Clay Tile Contractor, Urethane Foam Contractor, Roof Coatings Contractor, Sewer, Sewage Disposal, Drain and Pipe Laying Contractor, Reconditioning and Repairing Pipeline Contractor, Sheet Metal Contractor, Gutters Contractor, Awnings and Patio Cover Contractor, Structural Steel Contractor, Swimming Pool Contractor, Swimming Pool Service Contractor, Hot Tub and Pool Contractor, Tile Contractor, Cultured Marble Contractor, Terrazo Contractor, Ventilating and Air Conditioning Contractor, Interior Design, Waterproofing Contractor, Welding Contractor, Well Contractor, Pumps Installation Contractor, Injection Well Contractor, Solar Power Systems Contractor, Solar Energy Systems Contractor, Solar Hot Water Systems Contractor, Solar Heating and Cooling Systems Contractor, Pole and Line Contractor, High Voltage Electrical Contractor, Classified Specialist Contractor (Apply with the Contractor’s License Board)

  9. Idaho- $2,000 surety bond- Plumbing, Electrician, HVAC (Apply with the Division of Building Safety)

  10. Illinois- $10,000 limited surety bond or $20,000 unlimited surety bond- Roofing Contractor (Apply with the Department of Financial and Professional Regulation), $20,000 surety bond -Lawn Sprinkler System Contractor, Irrigation Contractor (Apply with the Department of Public Health)

  11. Minnesota- $25,000 surety bond- Electrical Contractor, Mechanical Contractor, Plumbing Contractor, Pipe Laying, Satellite System Contractor, Technology System Contractor, $15,000 surety bond- Residential Roofer Contractor, $8,000 surety bond- Sign Contractor, $3,000 surety bond- Water Conditioning Contractor (Apply with Construction Codes and Licensing Division). Non-Minnesota Contractor, Non-Minnesota Construction Contractor surety bond is 8 percent of contracts over $50,000. (Apply with the Department of Revenue)

  12. Mississippi-The surety bond amount is determined by the tax percentage and contract price- Contractor, Prime Contracts, Sub-Contracts, Contractor Use Tax Surety Bond, Contractor Income Tax Surety Bond, Contractor Franchise Tax Surety Bond, Contractor Withholding Tax Surety Bond, Contractor’s Blanket Sales Tax Bond, Contractor’s Blanket Use Tax Bond, Contractor’s Blanket Income Tax Bond, Contractor’s Blanket Franchise Tax Bond, Contractor’s Blanket Withholding Tax Surety Bond, Contractor’s Blanket Special Fuel Tax Surety Bond, Contractor’s Blanket Diesel Fuel Tax Surety Bond (Apply with the Department of Revenue)

  13. Nevada- The surety bond amount is determined by the Board based on the type of license, experience, financial health of the contractor, etc.- Residential Pool Contractor, Spa Contractor, Residential Pool and Spa License, Engineering Contractor, General Building Contractor, Specialty Contractor (Apply with the Contractor’s Board)

  14. New Jersey-$1,000 surety bond- Electrical Contractor (Apply with the Board of Electrical Contractors), $3,000 surety bond- Heating, Ventilating, Air Conditioning, and Refrigeration (HVACR) (Apply with the Board of Examiners of Heating, Ventilating, Air Conditioning and Refrigerator Contractors), $3,000 surety bond- Master Plumber Contractor (Apply with the State Board of Examiners of Master Plumbers)

  15. New Mexico- $10,000 surety bond- Contractor License Code Surety Bond, Contractor for Manufactured Homes (Apply with the Construction Industries Division)

  16. North Carolina-$5,000 surety bond- Modular Housing Set-Up Contractor, $10,000 surety bond Manufactured Home Set-Up Contractor (Apply with the Office of the State Fire Marshal), The bond is based on the financial net worth of the business- General Contractor (Apply with the Licensing Board for General Contractors)

  17. Oklahoma-$5,000 surety bond- Mechanical Contractor, Electrical Contractor, Plumbing Contractor, Nonresident Contractor (Apply with the Construction Industries Board)

  18. Oregon- Surety bond amounts range from $10,000- $20,000- Residential Contractor, Surety bonds amounts range from $20,000-$75,000- Commercial Contractor, Residential and Commercial Contractor (Apply with the Construction Contractors Board), $15,000 surety bond –Individual Landscape Contractor or $3,000-$20,000 surety bond for Business Landscape Contractor (Apply with the Landscape Contractors Board)

  19. South Carolina- $15,000 surety bond- Residential Builder, $10,000 surety bond- Licensed Specialty Contractor, HVAC Contractor, Plumber Contractor, Electrician Contractor, $5,000 surety bond- Registered Residential Specialty Contractor (Apply with the Residential Builders Commission), $7,000 to $500,000 - South Carolina General Contractors and Mechanical Contractors License Surety Bond

  20. South Dakota- The surety bond amount is based on a percent and the contract type- Contractor Excise Tax (Apply with the Department of Revenue)

  21. Washington- $4,000 surety bond- Electrical Contractor, Telecommunications Contractor, $12,000 suretybond- General Contractor, $6,000 surety bond -Specialty Contractor (Apply with Labor and Industries)

  22. West Virginia- The surety bond amount is based on the number of employees- Contractor License Wage (Apply with the Contractor Licensing Board)

County and City Required Surety Bonds for Contractors:

  1. Colorado- General Contractor, Building Contractor, Concrete Contractor, Specialty Contractor, Demolition Contractor, Sewer Contractor

  2. Connecticut- Concrete Contractor, Sidewalk Contractor, Driveway Contractor, Excavation Contractor, Sewer Contractor

  3. Delaware- General Contractor, Subcontractor, Air Conditioning and Heating Contractor, Building Contractor, Carpentry Contractor, Cement Contractor, Concrete Contractor, Electrician, Fire Sprinkler, Home Improvement, Plumber, Roofing Contractor, HVAC Contractor, Septic Tank Contractor, Utility Contractor

  4. City of Chicago- General Contractor

  5. Indiana:- Air Conditioning and Heating Contractor, Plumbing Contractor, HVAC Contractor, Alarm Contractor, Electrical Contractor, General Contractor, GC, Building Contractor, Carpentry Contractor, Cement Contractor, Commercial Contractor, Demolition Contractor, Drywall Contractor, Elevator Contractor, Excavation Contractor, Fencing Contractor, Fire Detection Contractor, Fire Extinguish Contractor, Floor Covering Contractor, Glass and Mirror Contractor, Glazing Contractor, Home Improvement Contractor, Heating and Cooling Contractor, Installation Contractor, Insulation Contractor, Landscaping Contractor, Masonry Contractor, Master Contractor, Master Electrician Contractor, Master Plumber Contractor, Mechanical Contractor, Paving Contractor, Pipeline Contractor, Refrigeration Contractor, Remodeling and Renovation Contractor, Residential and Commercial Contractor, Residential Contractor, Roofing Contractor, Roofing Building Contractor, Septic Contractor, Sewer Contractor, Siding Contractor, Siding and Window Contractor, Sign Contractor, Sign Hanger/Billboard Erector, Sign Installer, Steamfitter Contractor, Steel Erector, Subcontractor, Swimming Pool Contractor, Tile and Marble Contractor, Underground Cable Contractor, Underground Utility Contractor, Waterproofing Contractor, Irrigation Contractor, Painting Contractor, Sidewalk Contractor, Framing Contractor, Lawn Maintenance Contractor

  6. New York City- Home Improvement Contractor

  7. Ohio- Electrical Contractor, Water and Sewer Contractor, Fire Extinguish Contractor, General Contractor, GC, HVAC Contractor, Plumbing Contractor, Plumber, Excavation Contractor, Master Backflow Tester, Sewer Contractor, Concrete Contractor, Septic Tank Contractor, Water Connections Contractor, Building Contractor, Fence Contractor, Insulation Contractor, Carpentry Contractor, Air Conditioning and Heating Contractor, Roofing Contractor, Siding and Window Contractor, Sign Contractor, Swimming Pool Contractor, Waterproofing Contractor, Paving Contractor, Painting Contractor, Demolition Contractor, Sidewalk and Driveway Contractor, Boiler Contractor, Home Improvement Contractor, Landscaping Contractor, Mechanical Contractor, Warm-Air Heating Contractor, Pipe-Laying Contractor, Other Specialty Contractor

  8. Wisconsin- Plumber, Concrete Contractor, Cement Contractor, Fence Contractor, General Contractor, GC, Sidewalk Contractor, Driveway Contractor, Electrical Contractor, Gas Fitter Contractor, Heating Contractor, Drain Layer, Natural Gas Contractor, Building Wrecker

  9. Wyoming- Electrical Contractor, HVAC Mechanical Contractor, Plumber, General Contractor, Residential Contractor

How Do I Get a Surety Bond?

Apply online at SuretyGroup.com. It's that easy.

How Much Will This Bond Cost?

The premium you pay for a Contractor's License Surety Bond is dependent on credit and the bond amount required. SuretyGroup.com provides free, no-obligation quotes that fit your specific situation.

Related Links:

Non Resident Contractors Tax Bonds
Read our blog, Insurance Agents: Help Your Clients Obtain a Surety Bond
Read our blog, Code Compliance Bonds Help Keep Homes Safe
Read our blog, Why You Want a Business to be Bonded
Apply Online for a Contractor License Surety Bond

More Surety Bond Questions?

Check out our FAQ page or What’s a Surety Bond? page. Should you need or choose to buy a surety bond, buy from us. SuretyGroup.com has been underwriting surety bonds throughout the U.S. for more than 35 years. When you work with us, you enjoy the unique benefit of dealing with a team of highly experienced surety agents with in-house underwriting authority. This allows you to receive competitive, low rates, quick approvals, and immediate bond delivery. In most cases, your bond will be delivered within 24 hours after you apply for it.


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