Bond

Surety Bonds: What Are They, What Do They Do, and Why Am I Required to Get Them?

Author, Andy Roberts, Account Executive, Surety Division, Rancho Mesa Insurance Services, Inc.

When we have clients that are required to bond for the first time, often their first questions are what is a surety bond, how do they work, and why am I being required to provide one.  

In its basic form, a surety bond is a three party agreement between the contractor, called the principal, the project owner, called the obligee, and the surety company. The surety company provides a financial guarantee to the obligee that the principal is both qualified and capable of performing the contracted job.

Home Care Dishonesty Bonds and Client Property Theft Coverage Are Not Created Equal

Author, Chase Hixson, Account Executive, Rancho Mesa Insurance Services, Inc.

A common misconception in the home care industry is assuming a Home Care Dishonesty Bond is the same as having coverage for theft of client property. Many business owners don’t realize that Home Care Dishonesty Bonds, following the payment of a claim, will seek reimbursement from the business owner. That means the business owner is ultimately going to pay the claim if they don’t have an insurance policy to cover this type of act.

Time To Renew Your Bond Line of Credit

Author, Matt Gaynor, Director of Surety, Rancho Mesa Insurance Services, Inc.

The majority of Rancho Mesa’s contractor clients have a fiscal year, end of December 31, for their company financial statements. During March, April, and May we collect a variety of financial information from our contractors to update the bonding company. The underwriting items we request include the 12/31 CPA financial statement, along with the work in progress and closed contract schedules. We also request an updated bank letter, account receivable/account payable schedules, and a personal financial statement from the owner.

The Benefits and Risks of Third Party Indemnity

Author, Andy Roberts, Account Executive, Surety Division, Rancho Mesa Insurance Services, Inc.

For a contractor that is wanting to bid a job, or has won a job that’s requiring a bond that they are not able to qualify for on their own, one option for increasing their bond capacity and ability to qualify would be to have a third party also indemnify to their Surety.  While there are definite risks, this type of agreement can be very beneficial to both parties.   

How Accurate Work-in-Progress Schedules Can Positively Affect Your Bond Program

Author, Matt Gaynor, Director of Surety, Rancho Mesa Insurance Services, Inc.

When meeting with new contractors looking to qualify for increased bonding capacity, one of the first items generally discussed is the work-in-progress Schedule (WIP). Understandably, the balance sheet and profit & loss statement get the most attention when compiling financial information for the bond company, but the WIP, whether on a quarterly or six month basis, allows the bond company to gauge how well the contractor has estimated their projects and how conservative they have been on a project’s profitability. Preparation of an accurate work in progress schedule is the only way to gauge the true profitability of the company.