What is a Home Warranty?

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A home warranty is a service contract that covers repairs and replacements of major home systems and appliances that break down due to normal wear and tear. The warranty typically covers items such as plumbing, electrical, heating and cooling systems, as well as major appliances like refrigerators, ovens, dishwashers, and washing machines. Home warranties are often offered as an incentive to buyers when purchasing a home, but they can also be purchased separately.

A home warranty is a service contract that covers repairs and replacements of major home systems and appliances that break down due to normal wear and tear. The warranty typically covers items such as plumbing, electrical, heating and cooling systems, as well as major appliances like refrigerators, ovens, dishwashers, and washing machines. Home warranties are often offered as an incentive to buyers when purchasing a home, but they can also be purchased separately.

What is a Home Warranty?

A home warranty offers a sense of security by providing financial coverage for major appliances and crucial systems within your home. While the plan is available for purchase at any time, some sellers or landlords choose to include it as part of the real estate deal.

Regardless of the reason or timing of the purchase, a comprehensive home warranty plan ensures protection for essential household items such as kitchen appliances, washing machines, and water heaters. To find out more about the service limits, charges for service calls, repair procedures, and other details, read on.

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What does the Home Warranty guarantee?

The scope of home warranty coverage varies depending on the provider and plan you choose. Nevertheless, most plans generally cover repair services for critical components of your home, including the electrical and plumbing systems, major appliances such as washers, dryers, and refrigerators, as well as the heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) system, furnace, and hot water storage tank.

Keep in mind that the more extensive the coverage you require, such as for pool pumps or garage door switches, the higher the monthly or annual premium you’ll need to pay to the warranty company.

How does a home warranty work?

Picture yourself using a sleek new refrigerator that you purchased only last year, only to have it unexpectedly malfunction as soon as the manufacturer’s warranty expires. Without a home warranty, repairing or replacing it could cost you a significant amount of money.

However, if you have a home warranty from HWA, you can easily file a claim either online or through our customer service department, and we will take care of everything else. Once you’ve submitted your claim, we’ll connect you with an authorized service provider who will diagnose the problem and repair the unit or system as quickly as possible.

How much does the home warranty company charge?

While homeowners insurance is typically mandatory along with your mortgage, home warranties are optional. Basic insurance premiums can start as low as $300 and increase to $600 for more extensive coverage, according to Bell.

Homeowners can add additional features to their maintenance contract, such as a pool, various appliances, or an outdoor well, if necessary.

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Although home warranty companies offer plans to homeowners at any time, purchasing one when you first become a homeowner can often result in a better deal. Whether you’re purchasing a condominium or a single-family home, these plans can be tailored to your needs. Additionally, some warranty plans are “Build It Yourself,” allowing you to customize the plan to include specific systems and appliances or add additional features such as air conditioning upgrades.

“Home warranties obtained during real estate transactions typically provide the most comprehensive coverage and price points, making now the perfect time to secure one,” Bell stated.

At the end of the first year, you’ll typically have the option to renew your home warranty or switch to a service provider.

What does a home warranty not cover?

Typically, a home warranty plan does not cover structural items like walls, foundations, and windows. Additionally, certain appliances (such as refrigerators, ceiling fans, and water heaters) that were not included in the original agreement may also be excluded from coverage.

While optional add-ons like pool coverage may be available, some items such as patios, terraces, and certain garages may not be covered. It is important to carefully review the details of your contract to understand what is and is not included in your coverage.

Here are some common items that are typically not covered by a home warranty agreement (although this can vary by company):

  • Damage to appearance or cosmetics
  • Lighting fixtures
  • Outdoor water systems
  • Booster pumps
  • Remote controls
  • Damage caused by foreign objects
  • Appliance accessories.

Home insurance vs. home warranty

Although they may seem similar, home warranties and home insurance are two different types of coverage. A home warranty typically lasts for one year and provides reimbursement for the cost of repairing or replacing failed systems or appliances in the home. This type of coverage is optional and typically covers items such as air conditioning systems, plumbing fixtures, and dishwashers. Coverage under a home warranty generally applies to breakdowns caused by general wear and tear.

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In contrast, homeowners insurance is a policy required by mortgage lenders to protect homeowners against unforeseen disasters or losses, including expenses related to damage caused by events such as fire, wind, vandalism, hail, and theft. Unlike home warranties, homeowners insurance is a standard policy that provides broader protection for a wider range of risks and losses.

How much does a home warranty cost?

The cost of a home warranty plan typically ranges between $220 to $1,850 per year, which is often paid in monthly installments. However, some warranties may cost more depending on the type of home and the length of the warranty period. It’s important to note that there may also be a maintenance fee each time you request repairs, which can add to the overall cost.

The price of a home warranty can vary depending on the type of property and the specific coverage you’re looking for. It’s important to research different home warranty plans to find one that fits your needs and budget.

When purchasing a newly built home, it’s common for the builder to offer a one-year warranty on built-in appliances, air conditioners, and water heaters, among other things. This warranty is typically included in the purchase price of the home.

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