Development Surety Process

Last updated Nov. 10, 2014 - 12:06 pm

This process applies when a developer wishes to record all or part of a subdivision or obtain a building permit for a site plan before all infrastructure-related improvements and installations are completed and accepted by the City of Raleigh. The purpose of the surety is to protect future homeowners and businesses in the event that a developer does not complete the infrastructure improvements and guarantees that the City will have the resources to complete the improvements if necessary.


Infrastructure construction plans must be approved, if applicable.

Approvals or Permits Issued

Not applicable

Key Steps in the Process

  1. 125% surety amount is required at lot recordation or building permit, whichever occurs first
  2. Each surety is based on the phase being recorded

Submittal Requirements

Required for Submittal

Submit the requirement to the Public Works – Transportation Field Services Division. One Exchange Plaza, Suite 304, Raleigh, NC 27601 from 8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m.

  • Example Development Surety Agreement
  • Sealed engineer's cost estimate
  • Example Letter of Credit

Additional Information

Forms of Surety:

Letter of Credit

  • Shall be irrevocable
  • Must be issued in favor of the City of Raleigh, North Carolina
  • Shall be in effect for a minimum of one (1) year from the time of issuance and must be automatically extended without amendment for one (1) year from its expiration date (or any future expiration date)
  • If the Letter of Credit is not to be renewed, the financial institution must notify the City, by registered mail, at least sixty (60) days prior to the expiration date. Note: the City may draw on the Letter of Credit if the developer fails to renew the Letter of Credit and the planned improvements have not been completed
  • The name of the subdivision/project and a summation of the improvements
  • Statements required for the City to draw on the Letter of Credit shall not have any burdensome conditions (an acceptable statement is “(developer name) has not complied with the development agreement within the City of Raleigh”

Cash Bond

  • A cashier’s check will be made payable to the City of Raleigh
  • The cash bond will be held until the completion of the improvements

Performance Bond

  • Shall be in effect until such time as planned improvements have been completed
  • Shall provide that the City may institute suit on the bond for breach of any term(s) or condition (s) in all respects within one (1) year from the end of the stipulated period during which the work required is to be performed
  • To execute such bonds, the bonding company must be licensed under the laws of North Carolina to execute such bonds and a resident North Carolina registered agent must sign the bond (names and address shall appear on the bond)
  • The name of the subdivision/project and a summarization of the improvements must be clearly referenced on the bond

Reduction in Surety – A reduction in surety is permitted after the project engineer submits an updated itemized list of work left to be completed and is reviewed and accepted by the City. This will be done on a case-by-case basis.

Release of Surety – After all construction has been completed, a construction final has been approved by the City and all warranty repairs have been completed, the developer can request that the City release this surety.

Expected Processing Time

  • Once estimate is provided it will be reviewed and approved within three business days
  • Within three weeks of receipt, an executed Development Surety Agreement from the City of Raleigh


There are no fees associated with this process.

Next Steps

Submittal package for building permit or lot recordation, whichever occurs first

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