What is a Home Warranty Policy?
A home warranty policy is a type of insurance against the breakdown of any or all of your appliances during regular usage. It is a binding contract that protects you from the expense of repairing or replacing your existing appliances and systems by taking care of them on your behalf. To be eligible for a home warranty your appliances must be in good working order when you enter into the agreement. Most contracts have to be renewed each year. Every household has different requirements but fortunately, there are many home warranty policies to choose from.
How to Choose a Home Warranty Provider
There are so many electrical appliances and systems in today's homes that it is every homeowner's worst nightmare to think of how much money they could cost to replace or repair particularly if they all happened to malfunction at the same time. Every family dreads the inconvenience of being without an essential appliance for days on end. And what if your budget can't stretch to the purchase or repair of an expensive system such as air conditioning or heating? Planning ahead by choosing a home warranty provider to solve such emergencies should put your mind at ease but what attributes should you look for?
Benefits of having a Home Warranty in Place
It's preferable to have a home warranty particularly if your appliances are no longer new as they are more vulnerable to breaking down. If an appliance fails when a home warranty is in place the warranty provider pays the costs involved to repair or replace it. The provider even arranges for a technician to visit your home to repair the damaged appliance. If ever you decide to sell your home, potential buyers can be impressed if you have taken out a home warranty as it shows your home's systems such as the air conditioning have been maintained correctly.
How does a Home Warranty Work?
When you choose a provider, you can expect to pay an annual fee of approximately $500 to $1,000 but in return the repair or replacement of your appliances is covered. If one of your appliances or systems malfunctions you simply inform your warranty provider. There is generally a basic service fee of around $50 to $100 that you might have to pay for every appliance that your provider repairs or replaces. But as in many instances the actual cost of the remedial work can far exceed this amount it can be considered a cost-effective strategy. Your provider arranges for anything that is required from ordering spare parts to delivering a new appliance.
What Types of Home Warranty Plans are Available?
A warranty for appliances and systems is often referred to as a systems warranty. It basically covers all the important mechanisms of your home such as air conditioning, heating, plumbing and electrical work. A straightforward appliance warranty can replace all the individual warranties you may be offered when purchasing anything new such as kitchen equipment. A structural warranty usually applies to a new build home and safeguards any defects that show up in the building to a maximum of ten years.
What Features do Home Warranty Providers Offer?
Some home warranty providers offer reduced monthly subscriptions in return for you contributing more to the cost of repairs by paying a higher service fee. If you are working to a strict household budget this can be of benefit if you think the risk of breakdowns is slight. You may also be offered the first month or two of subscriptions free of charge. While some providers place an upper limit such as $2,000 on any claims you make others don't insist on checking the condition or age of your appliances. As part of your warranty you may be given a guarantee that the provider will send a technician to your home within a fixed time limit such as eight hours. This can be beneficial as some companies can be slow in organizing repairs. Customer support that provides 24/7 assistance can be an advantage.
What does a Home Warranty Include?
Although warranties can vary between individual providers you can generally expect kitchen appliances such as washing machines and refrigerators to be covered. Other items could include your garage door entrance mechanism, central heating or air conditioning, electrical circuitry and plumbing. Always check out more than one provider before making a choice. Thoroughly read the terms and conditions of a warranty and research other customers' views to try and form a balanced opinion on what each company offers. That's when you'll find a comparison site to be helpful as it concentrates all the information in one place.