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Ultimate Guide to Janitorial Bonds: What They Are and Why Your Business Needs One

Ultimate Guide to Janitorial Bonds: What They Are and Why Your Business Needs One

Janitorial services are an important part of the U.S. economy representing nearly fifty billion dollars in revenue and employing over three million people. They help keep our:

  • Businesses...
  • Schools...
  • Medical facilities...
  • Hotels...
  • And homes clean and sanitary

Because janitorial/cleaning service companies access the homes and businesses of their customers, often during off hours, employee theft is a liability for janitorial companies. Commercial businesses understand theft is reality and require a form of protection to hold these janitorial companies responsible. This protection comes in the form of a surety bond purchased by the janitorial/cleaning company called a fidelity (good faith) bond or janitorial/cleaning bond.

Most private home owners may or may not require a janitorial/cleaning company to be bonded, but it can be a key benefit that separates one janitorial business from another.

This article covers:

  • What a janitorial/cleaning service surety bond is
  • How a surety bond work
  • Different type of janitorial/cleaning bonds
  • Who requires a janitorial/cleaning service surety bond
  • The cost of a janitorial/cleaning service bond
  • The difference between a janitorial service bond and liability insurance

What Is a Janitorial/Cleaning Service Bond?

Watch our video explaining janitorial bonds and why they can be optional and/or required.

Customers and clients place significant trust in janitorial/cleaning companies to treat their home and businesses with respect. Cleaning company's employees are a liability and these companies should provide a guarantee that their employees will conduct themselves according to legal and ethical standards. This is the purpose of a janitorial/cleaning service bond.

A janitorial/cleaning service bond is a type of surety bond. Surety bonds are three-party agreements that provide a financial guarantee that a business or individual will comply with a certain obligation.

Party 1: The Principal

The principal is the janitorial/cleaning business purchasing the bond.

Party 2: The Obligee

The business requiring a janitorial/cleaning business to purchase this bond is called the obligee.

A private home owner may or may not require a janitorial/cleaning business to purchase this bond, but they're still considered the obligee. In most cases, commercial cleaners are required to have a bond by their client's facility management.

Party 3: The Surety

The surety is a special type of insurance company that underwrites the janitorial service bond. On a successful claim, the surety guarantees payment of the claim up to the amount of the bond.

The principal (the janitorial/cleaning company) is responsible to pay the surety company back the amount of the claim.

To prevent fraudulent or frivolous claims, Surety Bonds Direct only sells janitorial service bonds with conviction clauses. Conviction clauses require for a claim to be deemed valid, there must be a legal conviction of the alleged offense.

It’s important to remember the difference between a surety bond vs insurance. A surety bond protects the janitorial service company's end customers where traditional insurance protects the janitorial service company itself. A surety bond and various insurance policies such as:

  • Workmans' comp
  • Commercial fleet auto insurance
  • General liability insurance together to form a complete insurance solution.

woman cleaning in kitchen

What Kind of Businesses Need Janitorial Service Surety Bonds?

Janitorial/cleaning service bonds are recommended for many different types of businesses, including:

  • Housekeeping services
  • Window washing services
  • Power washing services
  • Medical cleaning services
  • Steam cleaning services
  • Commercial cleaning services

Janitorial/cleaning service bonds are also called theft bonds, fidelity bonds, or employee theft bonds (aka dishonesty bonds).

While both bonds are fidelity bonds:

Janitorial/cleaning service surety bonds protect the end customer/client from the theft, larceny, fraud or other unethical behavior of an employee or the janitorial business itself while on premise at the client's location.

A dishonesty bonds protect the business from theft and fraud committed by an employee against the business itself.

  Janitorial Service Bond Business Service Bond Employee Theft/Dishonesty Bond
Type Fidelity Bond Fidelity Bond Fidelity Bond
Who is protected? Business's customers Business's customers Business owners
Common Bond Amounts $5,000-$100,000 $5,000-$100,000 $20,000-$100,000
Cost to purchase
(for 5 employees)
Check Your Price
Check Your Price
Depends on credit
Get a Quote

Who Requires a Janitorial/Cleaning Service Surety Bond?

Unlike many types of surety bonds, janitorial service surety bonds are not required by law. However, most larger commercial clients require a janitorial/cleaning service bond as a requirement to be awarded a cleaning contract because they recognize janitorial employees as liabilities.

This is a common requirement for large corporate contracts or environments in which employees will potentially have access to valuable and sensitive property. The janitorial service bond provides protection to the customer and that the cleaning business will abide by the conditions of the contract and will guarantee the safety and security of its clients’ property.

And while companies have their own property insurance policies to cover incidents like theft, this is something they don't want their insurance paying for if a conviction is brought against an employee of a janitor/cleaning company.

Commercial cleaner in office

How Much Does a Janitorial/Cleaning Service Surety Bond Cost?

To purchase a janitorial service bond, you pay a small percentage (premium) of the bond amount. Factors that affect the cost of a janitorial service bond include:

  • Amount of penalty sum (the bond amount)
  • Previous bond claims against the business
  • Number of employees working for the business

Businesses with 25 or fewer employees can instantly purchase a janitorial service surety bond up to $250,000 from Surety Bonds Direct, without a credit check. Simply enter your bond amount and number of employees on our janitorial service bond request.

Larger businesses or janitorial companies that require a higher bond amount or a larger workforce should request a free janitorial service bond quote. You can also call and speak with a bond specialist if you have any questions by calling 1-800-608-9950.

The Major Difference Between a Janitorial/Cleaning Service Bond and Liability Insurance

It can be confusing differentiating between a janitor/theft bond and liability insurance.

Liability insurance helps protect against financial loss as the result of injury, property damage, medical expenses, libel, slander, and defending lawsuits among other things. A janitorial company purchases liability insurance to protect their business from these unforeseen incidents.

A janitorial/cleaning service bond is purchased by a janitorial services company to protect it's customers and clients from any theft or fraud committed by the janitorial company's employees.

Surety Bonds Direct is a leading supplier of janitorial service bonds for businesses. We have pre-negotiated rates to provide an excellent benefit at an exceptional price. Get your bond online today, or call 1-800-608-9950 for expert advice on surety bonds.

Surety Bonds Direct   Jason O'Leary  


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