After years of savings, you now have enough money to purchase your first home, or probably you’ve decided to take a mortgage loan to finance it. Congratulations, that’s a great decision. But just as you made payment for the home, your agent is advising you to purchase a home warranty package. For a first-time home buyer, there is no need for trial and error when choosing the right company for a home warranty. According to a Florida home warranty expert, “Chich Home Services, provides some of the best home warranties in the state for first-time homeowners.” A visit to https://www.cinchhomeservices.com/faq-library/-/faq/what-is-a-home-warranty gives you an insight into what warranties entail and the company’s services. But does a home warranty provide the covers homeowners expect, and do you need it? Find answers to these and more as you continue reading.
What is a home warranty?
To begin with, there is a difference between a home warranty and homeowner insurance. A home warranty is more of a safety net that helps homeowners to avoid expensive repairs to some home appliances. It is a contract between a homeowner and a home warranty company to cover the repair or replacement of some major components in a home. Depending on the contract, it may cover the HVAC system, electrical system plumbing fittings, furnace, refrigerator, dishwashers, etc.
Home warranty companies normally have service providers they work with. After receiving a complaint of an equipment breakdown, the company will send the right service provider to check the fault. After the assessment, the service provider sends feedback to the company on whether the equipment needs replacement or repair. If the said fault is covered by your warranty, they go ahead to fix it. The homeowner only pays a small service fee. This sounds like a very great money-saving measure for homeowners, but there is more to it.
What does a home warranty cover?
As already mentioned, a home warranty covers major home appliances in a home. Depending on the policies of a home warranty company, a policyholder can ask for additional coverage at a fee. For example, you can purchase additional coverage for home components not covered by the warranty. This gives you customized coverage and your policy will go beyond the basics. Homeowners with sophisticated taste in terms of appliances can use this window to cover their expensive equipment. With it, you can cover your swimming pool, roof leaks, spa equipment, etc. It is always advisable to read through the policy document before signing the annual contract. Don’t forget to check the coverage of the policy and its exemptions.
What a home warranty doesn’t cover
Home warranties come with exemptions, even if you decide to have a customized policy. That aside, it may have limitations and disqualifications in the extent of coverage. That is, your policy may not cover the entire repair or replacement cost. Also, it may totally exempt certain damages. Your home warranty may not cover items for the following reasons.
- Equipment not covered by the warranty
- Equipment with pre-existing faults before the start of the warranty
- Improper installation or maintenance schedules
- Misuse of equipment
- Damages caused by improper care or by pests
Equipment and systems to cover with a home warranty
The more things the cover, the more expensive your policy becomes. So, you can choose to cover a wide range of items or just concentrate on high-value equipment and systems. Your policy must include your HVAC system, and plumbing system since repair cost is usually high. If possible, add your swimming pool equipment, and anything of high value.
Do you need a home warranty?
Since buying a home is a huge lifetime investment, it is prudent to use all means possible to reduce future home maintenance costs. One of the ways to achieve this is through a home warranty. Some property sellers offer buyers a home warranty when closing the deal, to save themselves from constant complaints of home component damages. It also provides the buyer with an assurance that damaged components can be fixed at an affordable cost.
Like any other policy, a home warranty has its benefits and drawbacks. You should assess both sides of the coin to determine whether you need to purchase a policy or not. Also, personal needs and financial status should be considered before making a decision. For example, some homes are without any expensive equipment with high repair costs; hence, may not need a home warranty even when offered for free.
On the other hand, a home with sophisticated and expensive systems and appliances may need a policy cover. With that being said, you should always ensure value for money. Is the policy you are purchasing worth it? Will it take care of whatever it says, or there are hidden clauses? Ask questions, read reviews about the company’s credibility, etc. before putting a pen on paper.
Advantages of home warranty
Having a home warranty saves you a great deal from emergencies and expensive repair and replacement. This comes in handy for homeowners without emergency funds. Even if you have such a fund, it could be used for other purposes, while your warranty caters to the repair cost.
A home warranty gives both the seller and buyer the assurance that there is a third party responsible for repairing and replacing damaged home components. You buy the home knowing there are little or no major expenses.
Expensive appliances usually attract expensive repair costs; if you have such gadgets at home, it’s wise to protect them with a home warranty. Even if the warranty doesn’t cover all the costs, you will surely save some money.
- It doesn’t cover appliances that have not been properly maintained. Unscrupulous companies can use this clause to deny you maintenance claims.
- The cost involved can be a disincentive. Imagine making annual payments without anything breaking down to require maintenance.
A home warranty is optional and you can choose your extent of coverage depending on the company. Note that, it isn’t the perfect financial tool you may want to explore in cutting down the cost of repair and replacement of appliances and home systems. It wouldn’t take care of your home maintenance needs, and also comes with restrictions even if an appliance is covered. Also, there may be years of payments without receiving any benefits because no appliance broke down. Before you purchase a policy, carefully read through the contract to know if it’s worth it.