Many people confuse a home warranty with homeowner’s insurance, but they’re actually two very different things. Your homeowner’s insurance is what is known as hazard insurance, and will only cover items damaged by fire, flooding, wind and other natural disasters. A home warranty, on the other hand, is a service contract meant to help with the repair – and in some cases, the replacement – of specific household appliances and mechanical systems that fail due to normal wear and tear. Before deciding if a home warranty is right for you, consider these facts.
Service fees still apply. Even if you buy a new home that comes with a free home warranty – in other words, someone else is paying the premium – you’ll still be responsible for a service fee of $50-75, in most cases. This isn’t a one-time fee; rather, it will apply every time you need a repair.
You may already be covered. If your home is newly-built, many of the items a home warranty would cover may already be protected. Most home appliances and systems in a new home, for example, have at least a one-year warranty. In addition, in many states, home builders are required to warranty the structural elements of the homes they build for up to 10 years. So before signing up for a home warranty, make sure you know what’s already covered so you’ll know if it’s worth the cost.
Home warranties don’t cover everything. The problem many homeowners run into with home warranties is not understanding exactly what they cover. Many assume that any household appliance or system that breaks down will automatically be fixed or replaced in full, but that normally doesn’t happen. It’s essential to read the contract closely to understand exactly what is and is not covered. Common misconceptions about home warranties include:
- The warranty will cover the full cost of the repair/replacement. While this is possible, many times the warranty will cover just a portion of the total cost.
- Appliances are covered no matter what. This is not usually the case, as appliances that weren’t properly maintained, have too much wear and tear or weren’t installed correctly usually aren’t covered.
- Defective components will automatically be replaced. In many instances, the warranty company will insist on trying to repair a faulty component first, only resorting to replacement if the repair fails.
- You get to pick your own service provider. Warranty companies are usually already contracted with a service provider that you’ll be required to use, so if you need an electrical repair and want to hire your favorite electrical handyman, you’re out of luck.
As long as you understand what you’re getting, a home warranty can be a good thing for many homeowners. For home plumbing repair or other repairs and services not covered by your home warranty, turn to Handyman Connection. A quick call to 1-800-88-HANDY is all it takes, and we’ll have your home back to normal in no time.