How to get your cleaning service bonded

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by Tom Watson on October 3, 2010

Before we get talking about how to get your cleaning service bonded, lets talk about what bonding insurance is because not everyone may know.

Bonding insurance, which is usually referred to as “bonding”, is a method of insuring against loss caused by several factors.

These factors may include lack of competence, fraud or dishonesty. The people who carry this type of insurance are often referred to as being “bonded.” Bonding is common in the cleaning business because many times our services require after-hours access.

If your cleaning service is in need of a little extra credibility, pay a premium to an insurer and get your cleaning company bonded. The cost of bonding varies from company to company. A good rule of thumb is that premiums are between .75 percent and 3 percent of the face value of the bond.

The actual cost may vary some depending on the risks and nature of the bond in question. The bond for my company came in at $150.00 per year for a $5,000 bond (3% of face value). I have never had a problem that required the bond to be used. I’m not sure if that makes me lucky or good, but I’ll take it either way.

Though I have not had any problems with bonding, many bonding companies only cover “specified” events. If something other than a “specified” event happens, the bonding agency may refuse to pay out on the bond. To protect yourself, work with an agent that has experience bonding companies. This way you can discuss how the coverage would apply to your unique situation.

As I mentioned, bonding policies for cleaning companies are relatively inexpensive. Just keep in mind that for the bond to be paid out, the bonding company requires an arrest and conviction. They are not in the business of paying out cash to events that can not be proven in court.

Getting your cleaning business bonded through the same company that provides your General Liability insurance would be a good bet (if you haven’t even got that far yet, just look up “commercial business insurance -insert your town here-” online or check out this site that gives out free quotes BOLT Insurance. Just fill out the form to get prices).

When you already have a relationship in place with an insurance agent, they can explain how it works for your situation and recommend an appropriate policy amount. The act of bonding your cleaning company is not only rather inexpensive, it helps ease the fears of possible future customers by showing them you run a first class company.

You need to eliminate any reasons the potential customer may have to not do business with you. If your not bonded, they have have a reason to not hire you, so make that reason go away for a small fee and reap the benefits going forward.

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{ 8 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Crystal Lundberg November 6, 2012 at 12:24 am

i need to get insurance and some other tips..

2 Tom Watson November 6, 2012 at 7:37 am

Hi Crystal!

The insurance link in the post will give you an idea of cost. As for the other info you are looking for, just browse about or shoot me a question on the contact page.

3 Kara November 9, 2012 at 7:09 pm

Hi there

I recently started a little house keeping business. I clean for three people so far and I am not bonded nor do I have liablity insurance. I was wondering if I should get bonded or insurance and if so how would I go about doing that.

Thanks!

4 Tom Watson November 9, 2012 at 9:36 pm

Hi Kara!

You do need insurance… that is not something you want to mess with. You can follow the link in the post above or just type in “business insurance” along with your zip code to find companies near you that offer it. It’s not complicated. Find an agent that explains it to you in a way you understand. The same agent usually can bond you as well very cheaply.

FYI: I did a post in insurance here… http://www.cleaning-4-profit.com/2012/09/02/cleaning-business-insurance/

5 robin March 24, 2014 at 4:49 pm

i want to find out where can i go to get insure and bonded in nc

6 Tom Watson March 25, 2014 at 1:16 pm

Hi Robin! Go to GOOGLE and type in “commercial insurance” PLUS YOUR ZIP CODE. You’ll have plenty of choices from there. Just meet at least 2 different agents and ask them what do you need to get started. How much money for how much coverage. Then COMPARE. Bonding can normally be done by the agent who helps you with the insurance (it’s a separate policy).

7 lisa lorenzo August 6, 2014 at 10:49 pm

I’m starting a forclosure clean out company and a moving / small repair company. Do you know if we would have to get bonded and insured for each service And I must say I thank you for taking the time to explain things like bonding in a way that even I can understand.

8 Tom Watson August 7, 2014 at 12:34 pm

Hi Lisa! You just get bonded once per company. So if you perform a bunch of services under one company name, you’ll be fine. If on the other hand you started two different companies THEN you would need to have two separate bonds.

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