Date Published: April 19, 2019

As Surety1 we often get calls asking what it takes to get bonded. While there are hundreds of types of surety bonds, contractors in public works need performance and payment bond when awarded a contract. And prior to being awarded the contract, they usually need bid bonds in order to properly bid on public works projects. This is one of the many barrier of entries contractors face when doing business in the public sector. The good news is that if you have excellent credit and been in business for 3 years, qualifying for bonds up to $500,000 is very easy under Surety1’s credit based application. Here is a guide to getting your first bond.

how to get a performance and payment bond
Easy 10 minute application for performance bonds up to $500,000


Applying for this bond will take 10 minutes. It’s a 2 page application asking for the following:

  • Company Information. This includes business name, tax ID number, year business started, etc.
  • Personal information section. This includes company owner name, address, and social security number.
  • Company history. This would include listing 3 largest jobs, past experience, and confirming any prior issues with paying bills.
  • Bond request. If there is a specific request, there is a section to ask questions about the contract or bid.

Send to our staff for next step. It’s as easy as that.


Once you complete the application to Surety1 staff, it goes into underwriting. Because this is a credit based application designed for the infrequent bond user, this process usually takes less than 24 hours, and often same day with excellent credit.

An agent will contact you with any clarifying questions or to let you know you have been pre-qualified for bonds up to $500,000.

Indemnity Agreement

Once approved for bonds, the last step is to sign the indemnity agreement. This agreement is required for all bonds. It is the guaranty of the company along with the personal guaranty of the owner and spouse against any loss to the surety. Unlike insurance, surety assumes and expects zero losses, and this indemnity agreement provides this assurance. The surety is simply ‘financially backing’ the work of the contractor, and would only do so if that contractor was willing to stand behind their work. The indemnity agreement achieves this.


The cost of getting pre-approved for bonds, or to go through the underwriting process is free. Once you are set up, you will be given a bond rate, which is 2.5 -3% for these credit based programs. This rate is only the cost of the performance and payment bonds. By getting pre-approved, you will know the cost of the bond and how much you can qualify for. Knowing this will allow you to factor in this cost to your bid to pass along to the owner.

This easy process to obtain performance and payment bonds helps lessen the barrier to entry many face in public works. Apply now on our website, or call us at 877-654-2327 anytime to speak to a surety professional.

Illinois Private Employment Agency Surety Bond

How to Get Bonded

1. Apply Online
Using our Free & Secure Application
2. Get Your Free Quote
Applications are No-Obligation
3. Get Your Bond
Most Bonds are Approved in 1-2 Business Days

Surety Bond Experts

Surety1 was founded in 2003 and helps thousands of clients find the best prices on their surety bonds. We take pride in our work so that we can give you great service. Learn more about Surety1.

Get started with the bond application process today.

Most bonds are fully processed within 1-2 business days. In some cases, you'll hear back from Surety1 within hours!