Timely CPA financial statements - a win-win for everyone

While monitoring internal information from their contractors throughout the year, at year-end (usually December 31), a bonding company will require a statement from an outside source, a Certified Public Accountant.

This protects both the construction client and the bonding company and can help contractors to solidify and grow their business.

Why require the CPA financial statement?

  1. For contractors looking to grow their business, a financial statement provides users with the information necessary to make economic decisions.

  2. Sureties use these statements to make assessments about the contractor’s potential and future risks, while providing a basis for setting capacity limits and determining premiums.

  3. A surety company has proven documentation that the information has been prepared by an independent financial source that has a background in working on contractor financial statements, and that the information is accurate

How does it work? The process is divided into three steps:
•	Compilation - the CPA takes financial data provided by the contractor and puts the information in a financial statement format that complies with generally accepted accounting principles.  There is no testing, nor any analytical procedures performed during a compilation.
•	Review - Using inquiries and analytical procedures, the CPA can present a reasonable basis for expressing assurances that no material modifications to the financial statements are needed. It also reports that the contractor is in conformity with generally accepted accounting principles. 
•	Audit - An audit is the highest level of financial statement service a CPA can provide. The purpose of having an audit is to provide financial statement users with an opinion by the auditor on whether the financial statements are prepared in accordance with the proper financial reporting framework, which entails testing, confirming, comparing, and tracing.

What Important Financial Information is Derived from a Financial Statement?

  • Working capital – current assets less current liabilities

  • Debt to equity – measure of the contractor’s financial leverage

  • Coverage ratios – measure of a contractor’s ability to meet its obligations

  • Contract/revenue backlog – amount and quality of the contractor’s uncompleted work


Why is Important to Hire a Construction-Oriented CPA?

  • A construction-oriented certified public accountant (CPA) is knowledgeable of current accounting and tax matters having to do with a contractor and provides financial, tax and management advice.

  • For small contractors, surety bonding will grow to become an integral part of their business as well as their ability to obtain bonding credit. Acquiring surety credit is greatly improved by acquiring properly prepared financial statements and by making sound business decisions with the advice of a construction-oriented CPA.

  • Generally, a good construction-oriented CPA knows the sureties and other financial institutions, which are favorable to contractors. This knowledge adds another level of credibility to the contractor’s table, which could turn into more surety and/or bank credit.


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