Surety bonds are not all created equal. Companies requiring surety bonding must be certain that the bonds they get have the features they need to conduct business, and they should also look for a positive experience from their bonding agency. Price is one consideration, but so is speed and service reliability.
To help you identify the best surety company and the best surety bond products possible, here are the most important factors to look for:
1. Type of Bond Offered
Certain industries and projects mandate specific surety bonding. These bonds are either explicitly required, or they provide a significant competitive advantage to companies that have them.
Pay close attention to the bonds needed or recommended by either your industry or by the specific project you are working on. For instance, contract construction work for public projects often requires both performance and payment bonds put in place in the amount stipulated the federal or relevant state’s Miller Act. Certain businesses may require janitorial or maintenance bonds before staff can be allowed to work there.
Know your bond requirements, and look closely at what a bond product offers before you commit to buy. Remember that if you have any questions, a bonding agency like National Surety Services, Inc. should be able to answer them with specific expertise in order to help guide you to the right product.
2. Cost of Bond
Your bond’s cost is not the only deciding factor when comparing products, but it is definitely a big one for most companies looking to secure surety bonding. Bonding products often come with a fee or premium at a percentage of the total bond offered, typically in the range of 5% or lower. Certain principals with a diminished ability to prove financial stability may require a higher premium to cover the surety’s perceived risk.
Bond costs are also not isolated numbers. Take a look at any service fees that can be incurred as well as any potential discounts offered for customers who buy bundled bonding products or who renew their bonding on a continual basis.
3. Customer Service of Surety or Agent
Customer service matters a lot with surety bonding. Bonds are supposed to be a “set it and forget it” type product, so when issues do arise they must often be resolved quickly.
Your surety or agent should be available to answer questions and assist you with any tasks, including the act of applying for new bonds. Great surety services providers are attentive, responsive, courteous and willing to put in extra effort to satisfy client needs.
4. Ease of Renewal, Adding Bonds, Raising Aggregate Limit
Surety bonds are often renewed on a rolling basis, and project-specific bonds are often bought in waves. Both types of recurring bond purchases should be facilitated by a simple, transparent process that is easy for the principal to manage. Submitting documented proof of financial stability, for example, should involve a predictable process without the need to bend over backward to prove that company’s earnings statements are accurate.
The best relationships between clients and surety agents make it easy to obtain new bonds or renew old ones without a hassle. Many agencies even reduce the paperwork needed to renew a bond or apply for additional bonding products.
Ensure You Get the Surety Bonds and Customer Experience You Deserve
By looking to the above factors, your business can not only obtain the bonds it needs affordably and efficiently, but it can also enjoy a positive relationship with your surety agency in the process.
If you are looking to find all the bonding products you need along with assistance and advice during the application process, including raising your aggregate bonding limit, then contact National Surety today to see how eager we are to help.