As a cleaning business owner, your goal is to ensure your clients’ homes and offices are fresh and beautiful. At the same time, you know that business can sometimes get messy especially as your work space is other people’s property.

Should a client accuse you or your employee of theft, would you be prepared for the potential costs associated? A janitorial service bond can protect your cleaning business.

In this guide, we’ll explain the purpose of these bonds, when you might need one, and what they don’t cover.

What is a janitorial bond?​

A janitorial bond is a contract between you, the bond provider, and your client that guarantees you’ll reimburse your client for:

  • Alleged property theft
  • Actual property theft

Why would you want to reimburse a customer for alleged theft? After all, you might completely trust your employee and know they have no interest in the supposedly stolen goods. It’s much more likely that your client lost their ring in a sink drain.

Sometimes, reimbursing the customer regardless of who’s at fault protects your business from significant financial loss, and is preferable over legal battles, bad reviews, and other negative repercussions that can ruin your cleaning business.

And in some cases, a janitorial bond is mandatory. Some clients consider it risky to invite cleaners into their homes or workplaces and may contractually require you to take out a bond for a specific amount. You can choose the coverage amount when purchasing a bond for your business.

It’s important to note that janitorial bonds only cover employee theft—not property damage or other incidents that could go wrong during the course of a cleaning job.

Let’s clear up any confusion.

Why do you need a janitorial bond?​

The main purpose of a janitorial bond is to protect your business and the client. Furthermore it helps show clients your dedication and professionalism.

While it’s one thing to say “Our employees would never steal”. It’s another to have a janitorial bond, which provides a guarantee against that risk.

Here are some scenarios where you might need a bond:

  • A janitorial bond may be contractually required by your clients.1 In that case, you need one if you want to win their business.
  • Taking out a bond can help you compete in a crowded market. Advertising that you’re bonded might inspire customer confidence and result in more jobs.
  • Should the worst case happen, a janitorial bond can help cover costs arising from an employee theft. Be sure to understand the specific terms of your bond.

Of course, beyond a janitorial bond, you may need other mechanisms to protect your cleaning business.

Janitorial bonds vs. insurance​

Janitorial bonds do not cover incidents other than theft. But what else could go wrong on a cleaning job? A lot more than you might expect.

Scenarios like the following are why most cleaners invest in general liability insurance.

  • Third-party property damage – Should you drop a vase while dusting a shelf, you could be responsible for the cost of its repair or replacement.
  • Third-party, non-employee bodily injury – Should a client or passerby miss the “slippery when wet” sign and take a nosedive, they could claim you are liable for their medical costs.
  • Personal and advertising injury – You compare your services to a competitor’s in an online ad. Should you write something inaccurate, they could sue you for libel.

Like a janitorial bond, insurance for your cleaning business provides optional, but valuable protection. After all you want to focus on growing your business, not worrying about costly claims.

Thimble’s on-demand Cleaning Business Insurance provides coverage when you need it. You can purchase insurance by the hour, day, week, or month—for a specific job, or for a jammed-packed season.

It’s easy to get covered with Thimble. Click “Get a Quote” or download the Thimble mobile app, enter a few details about your business and review your quote. Purchase with a click, and voila! Your policy and as many Certificates of Insurance (COIs)
are in your inbox.

Bond your business to success​

The next time your client asks you about your assurances, remember:

  • Janitorial bonds serve as a contract between you, your client, and the bond provider to cover the cost of actual and alleged thefts.
  • Taking out a janitorial bond can help you convey your business’ reliability.
  • Make sure you understand the terms and conditions of your bond, including whether you must pay it back.
  • Janitorial bonds only cover theft. To get coverage for other accidents (to third-parties), you need cleaning business insurance.

Janitorial bonds ensure that a client’s claim doesn’t clean out your finances. Safeguard your business and rest easy knowing there’s a plan in place if something goes wrong.


  1. NFP Surety. Janitorial Bond.