South Carolina Surety Bonds Overview

Individuals in South Carolina who want to start a business will usually need to get licensed. During the licensing process, many applicants will also need to post a surety bond. Similarly, contractors who wish to perform on state, federal, or private projects also need to post a surety bond first.

Why do I need to post a bond?

Regardless of the type of surety bond, their purpose is always the same - to guarantee that the bonded party will comply with certain obligations and responsibilities. If the bonded individual or business violates their bond agreement, affected parties can take action against the bond by filing a claim. The surety then investigates the matter and may extend compensation to claimants.

Keep reading if you want to learn more about surety bonds in the state. If you’re still new to the concept of surety bonds, you can find out more about them on our 'What is a surety bond' page.

If you're ready to apply for a bond - find the bond you need in the table below, and follow the link.

Find the Bond You Need

The table below contains a list of only the most popular surety bonds. If you can't find yours, fill out our online application and select "Not in the list".

Contractor License (No P&P Language) Bond Residential Builders Commission Registered Residential Specialty Contractor Apply Now
Contractor License (No P&P Language) Bond SC Dept. of Manufactured Housing South Carolina Manufactured Housing Apply Now
Contractor License (No P&P Language) Bond Residential Builders Commission Contractor License (No P&P Language) Apply Now
Contractor License (No P&P Language) Bond Residential Builders Commission (HVAC, plumber, electrician) Licensed Residential Apply Now
Contractor License (No P&P Language) Bond State of South Carolina Service Contracts Bond Apply Now
Investment Advisor (Blue Sky) Bond State of South Carolina BROKER-DEALER AND INVESTMENT ADVISER SURETY Apply Now
Investment Advisor (Blue Sky) Bond State of South Carolina Investment Advisor (Blue Sky) Apply Now
Investment Advisor (Blue Sky) Bond State of South Carolina BROKER-DEALER AND INVESTMENT ADVISER SURETY Apply Now
Debt Consolidators Bond Dept of Consumer Affairs Credit Counseling Organization Special Deposit Bon Apply Now
Professional Fund Raisers Bond South Carolina Secretary of State Professional Solicitor's Apply Now
Insurance Agents/Brokers Bond Dept of Insurance Insurance Broker Apply Now
Insurance Agents/Brokers Bond Dept of Insurance Insurance Broker Bond Apply Now
Insurance 3rd Party Administrator Bond South Carolina Department of Insurance Insurance Administrator Bond Apply Now
Mortgage Broker (1st & 2nd Mortgages) Bond Dept of Consumer Affairs Mortgage Broker Special Deposit Apply Now
Mortgage Lender/Banker (1st & 2nd Mort.) Bond State Board of Financial Institutions Mortgage Lender Apply Now
Mortgage Lender/Banker (1st & 2nd Mort.) Bond South Carolina Dept of Consumer Affairs Mortgage Lender Special Deposit Apply Now
Auto & Mobile Home Dealers (New & Used) Bond Department of Motor Vehicles - Dealer Licensing & Motor Vehicle Dealer Apply Now
Auto & Mobile Home Dealers (Used Only, No New) Bond Department of Motor Vehicles - Dealer Licensing & Motor Vehicle Dealer Apply Now
Sport Permits Bond South Carolina State Athletic Commission Professional Mixed Martial Arts Promoter Bond Apply Now
Health Spas/Health Clubs Bond South Carolina Department of Consumer Affairs Physical Fitness Center Deposit Bond Apply Now
Detectives Bond South Carolina Private Investigation Agency Apply Now
Employment Agencies Bond SC Secretary of State Office Employment Agencies Apply Now
Funeral Directors Bond South Carolina Department of Consumer Affairs Performance Bond of Preneed Funeral Contracts Apply Now
Professional Licenses (All Other) Bond South Carolina Dept of Consumer Affairs Pawnbroker Special Deposit Bond Apply Now
Professional Licenses (All Other) Bond Synergy Business ark; Kingstree Building Well Driller Bond Apply Now
Professional Licenses (All Other) Bond SLED Retail Pistol Dealer Apply Now
Professional Licenses (All Other) Bond Department of Insurance Professional Licenses (All Other) Bond Apply Now
Professional Licenses (All Other) Bond South Carolina Law Enforcement Division Contract Security Bond Apply Now
Schools (All) Bond Dept of Motor Vehicles Driver Improvement Office Commercial Driver Training School Surety Apply Now
Schools (All) Bond Commission on Higher Education Nonpublic Postsecondary Institution Apply Now
Schools (All) Bond State Board Of Cosmetology Cosmetology School Apply Now
Cigar/Cigarette & Tobacco Tax Bond South Carolina Dept of Revenue Misc Tax Section STATE TOBACCO TAX Apply Now
Fuel Tax (All Others, Sellers & Users) Bond Department of Revenue State Motor Fuel User Fee Bond Apply Now
Miscellaneous Taxes Bond SC Dept of Trans Right Of Way Bond Apply Now
Games of Chance Bond State of South Carolina Bingo Revenue Bond Apply Now
Utility Deposit Bond Greenwood, S.C. CPW Commissioners of Public Works Apply Now
Utility Deposit Bond SCE & G Utility Deposit Apply Now
Utility Deposit Bond SCE&G Utility Deposit Bond Apply Now
Utility Deposit Bond Santee Cooper Santee Cooper Deposit Bond Apply Now
Telemarketing/Phone Solicitor Bond State of South Carolina Professional Solicitor's Apply Now

Types of Surety Bonds in South Carolina

Generally, surety bonds are divided into the following three categories:

  • License bonds - if you are registering your business in South Carolina, you may be required to post a license bond to guarantee that you comply with local or state regulations. License bonds also protect your customers in case you commit fraud.
  • Construction bonds - if you’re a contractor working on a project in the state, oftentimes you will have to post several types of construction bonds. In a few cases, private projects may call for them too.
  • Court bonds - a South Carolina court may order you to get a court bond under several different circumstances.

License Bonds

License bonds guarantee compliance with regulations pertaining to your business. A license bond is an integral part of the licensing process, and usually, your license is not valid without the bond. In most cases, the surety bond needs to be renewed together with the business license on an annual or bi-annual basis.

One business type that almost always requires a bond is auto dealerships, and South Carolina is no exception. Licensed dealers need to post a auto dealer bond, which protects car buyers in case they buy a defective car or are defrauded in some way.

Other frequently-encountered surety bonds are the freight broker bond, the contractor license bond, and the mortgage broker bond.

Start your surety bond application today! Why us?
  • Quick turnaround - just 1-2 business days
  • Tailor-made advice on building a strong application
  • Exclusive bad credit programs

Construction Bonds

This is an important category of surety bonds for all construction contracts. Large public projects often require construction bonds, as a way to safeguard the state’s investment from contractor default or breach of contract. Different types of construction bonds protect against different scenarios.

Performance bonds, for example, can be triggered in case of contractor default, or any breach of the terms of the contract. Payment bonds offer protection in case a contractor doesn’t pay their subcontractors, laborers, or suppliers. A bid bond may be necessary when placing a bid on the project, to make sure that the contract will be completed under the conditions you described in the bid, if you are awarded the contract.

Court Bonds

This is the smallest of the three categories of bonds. A scenario that may warrant a court bond is if you are appealing a court judgement made by a state court. If a court has appointed you someone’s fiduciary or guardian, another type of court bond may be necessary.

If you have any more questions about either bond category, call our surety bonds experts at (866) 450-3412.

Surety Bond Cost in South Carolina

To get a quick estimate of your bond price, try our surety bond price calculator below. To better understand exactly how pricing works, see the explanation below.

+ -
+ =

Surety Bond Cost Calculator

* This form is for a rough estimate only.

Tell us where to send you your FREE estimate

SEND ME MY ESTIMATE!

We'll never share your information with third parties

Back to Surety Bond Cost Calculator

Thank you for your request!

The ballpark estimate on your premium is: $100 - $167

We've send a copy of your estimate on your email as well.

Want an exact quote? Simply fill out our online application It's fast and 100% free!

Get a free exact quote Get another estimate

Each surety bond has a total bond amount set by the state or local government. The total bond amount is the sum up to which a business may be made liable in case they violate the bond agreement. Let’s take the auto dealer bond as an example. If a South Carolina auto dealer commits fraud, the $30,000 sum on their dealer bond means that they may have to compensate a claimant up to $30,000 in case of a valid claim.

However, to obtain a surety bond, the principal of the bond pays only a bond premium, which is a certain percentage of the bond amount. The surety underwriter guarantees that the principal is capable of paying off any potential claim. It’s important to understand that the surety assumes a risk, because even though you are eventually responsible for all claims, the surety is also legally responsible for your actions and may need to initially step in pay off your claim.

How is the bond premium determined?

If you have good credit, and do not pose a serious risk to the surety’s finances, you can expect premiums as low as 1% and up to 4% of the bond amount. This risk is mostly measured through an evaluation of your personal credit score. Other factors that can also be considered are:

  • Personal and business financial statements
  • Liquid assets
  • Resume

As you can guess, a low credit score will cause the surety to consider you a high-risk applicant. This will likely increase premiums to anywhere between 5% and 15% of the total bond amount. If you have a low score but want to apply for a bond, see our bad credit program page for more information.

For even more detailed information on how bond cost is determined by sureties, see our surety bond cost page.

How to Get Bonded in South Carolina

Ready to apply for your bond? Follow the relevant application instructions below.

License bond application

To apply for a license bond, use our online application tool which will take you through the whole process in just a few minutes. You start by submitting a few basic details about your company, after which we will contact you with a bond quote and further details about finalizing the application process.

Not ready to apply? Then simply get a free no-obligations quote, so you can see our low prices!

Contract bond application

To apply for a contract bond, download the application form which you require. Once you complete the form, send it to us and we will contact you as soon as we have reviewed and processed it.

For any questions about getting bonded or the requirements in South Carolina, give us a call at (866) 450-3412!


About the author:
Todd Bryant
Todd Bryant is a graduate of Germantown Academy and the University of Pittsburgh College of Business Administration Honors College. He has been President of Bryant Surety Bonds, Inc., an A+ rated Business with the Better Business Bureau, since 2007. Licensed as a producer with the Department of Insurance, he has been published in the National Association of Surety Bond Producers newsletter and on numerous authoritative publications such as The Washington Post, Entrepreneur.com, Azcentral.com and many more.