What Should Contractors Do to Make Sure a Meeting with a Surety Company Produces the Best Results?
An underwriter wants to see your whole organization. The CPA presentation is important, but the underwriter truly wants to get to know your passion for the construction industry, talk about your experience, get to know your personnel and their experience, what job sizes you can handle, discuss positive references on completed contracts, and understand the quality of your credit relationships with your suppliers and other creditors. This type of information is all part of an underwriter feeling comfortable giving you surety support.
Meet with Your Surety Company
Joseph Catania, President of Anderson & Catania Surety Services, LLC ([email protected]), says “Contractors should meet with the surety at least once a year, especially if you’re forming a new relationship.”
Of course, program size and larger single-size projects could require that you meet more frequently.
“As agents, we like to visit job sites so the underwriting team can see for themselves the impressive work that has been done and how the job is managed,” he adds.
Build a Supportive Relationship
The face-to-face surety relationship is key to gaining support.
“It’s very important for the owners whose signatures stand behind the company to meet the surety underwriting team that approves their surety line of credit,” says Joe, who feels it’s essential to build a rapport with the surety. “This will lay the foundation for a stronger relationship if issues arise with construction company growth.”
The Surety Meeting – Who Should Attend?
Joe says it’s essential that owners of the company attend the surety meeting, as well as the bookkeeper, controller, or CFO of the company.
“Surety companies are financially driven and it’s important for the main financial representatives of the company to be present,” he says. We recommend also having project managers available to talk about certain construction project details.
The Location of the Surety Meeting
The initial, introductory meeting should take place at the contractor’s office.
“As the relationship grows, surety meetings can take place at the job site or at the surety’s home office,” Joe adds
An underwriter wants to see your whole organization, so the CPA presentation is important but to get to know your passion for the construction industry and just to be able to talk about your experience, your personnel, how experienced they are, what job sizes you can handle, getting positive references on completed contracts, and also through suppliers and other credit references.
That's all part of an underwriter feeling comfortable for giving you surety support you.