What is a landscape bond?
Some states require you to obtain a landscape contractor bond as part of the licensing process – to become a certified landscaping contractor and operate legally. These bonds guarantee that a landscape contractor will complete projects according to state-mandated licensing guidelines, protecting their clients financially.
How to Get a Landscaping License
Getting your landscape contractor license is a multi-step process.
- Fulfill your state’s basic prerequisites. These may include having a valid ID, having a social security number, and meeting a minimum age requirement.
- Find out if you need a landscape surety bond in your state to earn your license.
- Get your license!
Your state may or may not require continuing education. The National Association of Landscape Professionals offers various certifications that may benefit your future career as a landscape contractor. Mississippi, North Carolina, and Oregon are three states that require these bonds.
Get Your Landscape Contractor Bond:
- A landscape bond guarantees that a landscape contractor completes a project according to state-mandated licensing guidelines.
- Your state may require you to obtain this bond as part of the contractor licensing process.
- If you fail to complete work on time, fulfill legal obligations according to the contract, or meet quality standards, a client may file a claim against your bond.
- Your bond premium may range from 1-5% of the total bond amount.
How does a landscape bond work?
If you want to run a landscaping business or become licensed as a landscape contractor in your state, you may need to post a bond. This bond will offer your clients protection by ensuring legal compliance on your part. A landscape bond involves three parties:
- Principal: The landscape services company or licensed contractor that posts the bond
- Obligee: The party requiring the bond (your state)
- Surety: The company that issues the bond and agrees to back it
If the principal (landscape contractor) fails to complete work on time, fulfill legal obligations, or meet quality standards, a client may file a claim against the bond. Then, the surety company may investigate the claim to determine its validity and whether the contractor is responsible for the damages. If the claim is valid, the surety may compensate the claimant for their losses. The contractor will then owe the surety company for the amount paid to cover the claim.
What does a landscape bond cost?
To obtain your bond, you’ll pay a premium – a percentage of the total bond amount – to a surety bond provider. The total bond amount will depend on the size of your project and your state’s requirements. Typically, landscape bond premiums range from 1-3% of the total bond amount.
Other factors could also influence the cost, including your personal credit history, the term length of the bond, and your work experience. You may pay a premium closer to 3-10% of the total bond amount if you have poor credit.
To avoid claims against your bond, ensure you fulfill all obligations outlined in your contract. Also continue to communicate with your clients directly to meet their needs along the way and avoid unforeseen obstacles that may throw your project off balance.
Get a Landscaping Bond in Your State
Get a landscape bond in a flash by filling out a quick application online. Our all-digital bonding platform is secure and all about speed. Simply find your bond, select your state, fill in your information, get approved, and print your bond!
Founders Ryan Swalve and Zach Mefferd formed the vision for ZipBonds.com when they realized how overly complicated it was to help clients place surety. The frustration of being unable to incorporate the technology they’d used in other insurance-focused projects left them thinking “there has to be a better way.”
Fast forward a couple of years, and that better way is the impetus of everything we do at ZipBonds. We constantly look for innovative ways to improve the bonding process for our clients and agents. Our team comprises individuals who understand all angles of surety – for companies, agencies, and individuals. Incorporating everyone’s point of view to improve the process while simultaneously integrating cutting-edge technology is what sets our business apart.