Learn the pros and cons of a home warranty
Home warranties are something nearly everyone has heard about, but they still remain a little mysterious when it comes to how much they cost, what they cover, and if they’re really worth it. We’re here to help clear up some of the confusion and help you make an informed decision about your home’s maintenance. Let’s dive in!
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First things first: A home warranty is different than homeowner’s insurance
Home warranties and homeowner’s insurance are similar, but it’s important to note their differences. Yes, they both help keep you and your home in good condition, but in different ways.
Homeowner’s insurance covers the entire structure of your home and your belongings from natural disasters like tornadoes, hurricanes, floods, etc. In that way, it pretty much works like car insurance. Home warranties, on the other hand, covers your home’s systems and appliances due to wear and tear — no catastrophes needed.
What is usually covered in a home warranty?
Every plan is different, but they cover similar home items such as:
- Electrical systems
- Plumbing systems
- Heating and cooling systems
- Washer and dryer
- Kitchen appliances such as the oven, range, and garbage disposal
*Don’t be afraid to ask questions! Most plans include the above items as part of the warranty, but they may only cover certain brands or types of appliances and systems.
When it comes to what a home warranty does NOT cover, these are the items not generally included in a warranty:
- Outdoor items such as sprinklers
- Faucet repairs are not covered under all plans
- Not all plans pay for refrigerators, washers & dryers or garage door openers
- Spa or pools, unless specific coverage requested
- Permit fees
- Items are broken prior to closing2
PROS of a home warranty:
Let’s start with the question most people ask when considering before buying anything: How much does it cost? The good news is that a home warranty is relatively inexpensive. They’re usually around $300-$600 for the year, and home warranty companies often offer discounts or special sales.
In addition to offering good prices, home warranties also offer a peace of mind, especially for first-time homeowners or people who live in older homes. For first-time homeowners, they may not be familiar with home repair or maintenance yet, so it seems to be a good fit. For people who live in older homes, systems, and appliances can wear out quicker due to old pipes, water systems, and wiring.
So for a low cost, you get the security of knowing that not only can your broken dishwasher be fixed by a professional, you’ve already paid a set yearly fee which means you’re not breaking the bank with costly repairs.
CONS of a home warranty:
Who wouldn’t want all of the peace of mind that comes with a home warranty? Well, for people who purchased a new home, a home warranty can seem unnecessary. Sure, appliances can still break, but the wear-and-tear we normally associate with repairs shouldn’t happen for a long time with a new build.
Similarly, if you’re handy around the house and you have skills in appliance and systems repair, you may not want to invest in a home warranty.
Finally, the best home warranty providers make the process of submitting a broken appliance and repairing it quick and easy. But you do still have to take the time to let your home warranty company know that a repair is needed.
Are home warranties worth it?
We encourage people to factor in the cost of both a home warranty and repairs for their home and their comfort-level in fixing the appliances and home systems when they break. Once you consider those factors, you should feel good about your decision to purchase a home warranty or go without it.
No matter what you decide, maintenance is key to avoiding costly repairs and replacements in the future. Whether you do or don’t decide to go with a home warranty, a maintenance program is recommended for your HVAC system. Our maintenance programs help keep your home in tip-top shape!