#TipsOfTheTrade: Home Warranties

By in Home Maintenance with 0 Comments

 

Oh Home Warranties…homeowners either love them or they hate them.  They can definitely help keep money in your pocket, but they can also take money out too.  It’s a tale of two sides of the coin and we’ve got information that may help you decide which side you’re on.

The buyers of the very first house I sold included a home warranty in their contract because all the appliances were older, as was the heat pump.  Within the first year, the refrigerator went out.  They paid their $60 for a service call to the technician and he got it fixed.  It went out again not long after, and this time, the technician was unable to repair it.  So, the home warranty company bought them a new refrigerator.   Happy homeowners…Yeah!

A few years later, that very old heat pump finally kicked the bucket.  Again they paid their $60 for the service call and it was dead, so this time they got a new heat pump…Yeah!  Needless to say, this homeowner is a huge fan of home warranties!

Fast forward about 10 years and my husband, who works in the heating and air conditioning industry went on a service call for the company he worked for at the time.  The homeowner had a home warranty.  They paid their fee for the service call…$65 for them, if I remember correctly.  It was a different home warranty company than the one above.  My husband diagnosed the problem and said he needed to do further testing on the unit.  Guess what, the home warranty this homeowner had (or maybe they still have it, I don’t know) did not cover the further testing.  Definitely a case of READ THE FINE PRINT!  The homeowner agreed to pay the hundreds of dollars out of pocket for the testing to be done (in case you’ve never had HVAC work done, the labor ain’t cheap!).  Sure enough, my husband found the problem and told the home warranty company about it.  They refused to cover the repair and said if the homeowner wanted it fixed, they needed to pay for it themselves.  READ THE FINE PRINT!!!  At that point, the homeowner was without heat and felt they had no choice but to pay for it and deal with the home warranty company later.  Needless to say, this homeowner isn’t such a fan of home warranties.

These stories are typical with home warranty companies, so my advice to you is to do the following before you get one:

  1. READ THE FINE PRINT
  2. READ REVIEWS FOR EACH COMPANY YOU’RE CONSIDERING
  3. MAKE SURE YOU KNOW WHAT IS COVERED WITH YOUR PLAN AND WHAT IS EXTRA AND WHAT IS NOT COVERED AT ALL

Still not sure what to do, take a few minutes to watch this for more things to consider before purchasing that home warranty:

 

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