How much does a contractor bond cost in Virginia?
The Virginia Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation (DPOR) requires contractors to post a $50,000 surety bond if they do not meet the minimum net worth requirements for licensing. Some cities and counties in the State of Virginia require their own specific surety bonds. Below are the required bond amounts for popular local bonds:
- Arlington County Electrical Contractor: $10,000
- Fairfax County Home Improvement Contractor Bond: $5,000 or $10,000
- City of Lynchburg Contractor Bond: $5,000
- City of Richmond Contractor Bond: $50,000
The surety company issuing the bond determines your premium rate, which is the percentage of the total bond amount you pay as the premium. During the application process, the surety company evaluates your personal credit, financial statements, industry experience, and licensing history. EZ Surety can issue premiums for Virginia contractor license bonds for as low as $100 for applicants with standard credit. If your credit is below average, we can still offer a competitive rate for your contractors license bond.
Why are contractor bonds important in Virginia?
Contractor license bonds hold licensed contractors accountable for the quality of their work. The bonds protect the public (sometimes a city/county) from damages incurred due to the contractor’s violation of licensing laws or unsatisfactory work.
When the surety company issues the bond, they provide a financial guarantee to the state that the contractor will comply with the provisions of Chapter 11 (§ 54.1-1100 et seq.) of Title 54.1 of the Code of Virginia, Board regulations. If the contractor violates these regulations, causing a loss to the consumer, the consumer can file a claim against the bond. If the claim is valid, the surety company will cover the costs to repair the damage or complete the work, up to the amount of the bond. The contractor is then liable to reimburse the surety company for all damages paid.
How do I get my general contractor’s license in Virginia?
Below is a brief overview of the steps needed to obtain your contractor license in Virginia:
1. Understand the Requirements
Before applying for the license, learn what classification of license you require. The Commonwealth of Virginia has three classifications for general contractors:
- Class A: Contractors who work on a construction project valued over $120,000 or whose total value of projects during the year is valued at $750,000 or higher
- Class B: Contractors who work on a construction project valued over $10,000 but less than $120,000 or whose total value of projects during the year is valued at $150,000 or higher
- Class C: Contractors who work on a construction project valued over $1,000 but less than $10,000 or whose total value of projects during the year is valued less than $150,000
2. Obtain General Liability Insurance and Workers’ Compensation Insurance
Class A and Class B contractors are required to have general liability insurance, even if you do not have employees. If you have employees, you are also required to have workers’ compensation insurance.
3. Complete Financial Verification Forms
Class A and Class B contractors must provide verification of their net worth by posting a surety bond or completing a financial statement form.
4. Complete the Contractor Experience Verification Form
Contractors must complete the Experience Verification Form attesting to their experience as a contractor and submit the form to the Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation.
5. Fill out the Application
Once you have the necessary insurance and completed the preliminary forms, it’s time to gather your business and partner information and complete the Virginia contractor license application.
5. Submit Your Application and Fee
After you complete the application you need to print it out and mail the notarized forms to the Department of Professional and Occupational Regulation along with a $50 business registration fee and licensing fee based on the license classification.
- Class A contractors: $385
- Class B contractors: $370
- Class C contractors: $235
If you have further questions regarding the licensing process, you can always visit the Virginia DPOR contractors page.