Home warranties (sometimes called home service contracts) offer homeowners protection against unexpected repair costs for appliances and systems that have worn down from regular use, yet some providers make it easy for claims to be denied.
To avoid unexpected denials of repairs, clients should conduct extensive research on providers and maintain detailed maintenance records. Doing this will eliminate confusion should repairs be needed. For quality home warranty in Alabama, check this: https://www.cinchhomeservices.com/faq-library/-/faq/home-warranty-alabama
Know What’s Covered
If you’re purchasing a new home, a seller’s home warranty can help make the transaction smoother. But before accepting one of these warranties, make sure you know exactly what to expect.
Carefully read a home warranty contract to understand standard coverage, optional upgrades and exclusions as well as any limits or caps placed by providers for repairs or replacements.
Additionally, it’s important to remember that home warranties typically won’t cover repeat repairs of the same appliances and systems; this could include items which have already been repaired or replaced in their lifetime, typically those under 10 years in duration. An exception would be when an item becomes irreparable and in such instances your warranty company would usually replace it with one of similar model.
Don’t Call a Repair Person
Home warranties or residential service contracts (RSCs), provide homeowners with protection against unexpected repair and replacement expenses. To select reputable contractors and pay what’s owed for quality service, Choice Home Warranty’s Senior Account Manager, Kimberly Azpeitia advises.
According to the National Home Service Contract Association, most home warranties only cover issues related to “normal wear and tear.” That means problems caused by inadequate maintenance or homeowner error usually aren’t covered; nor are preexisting conditions or issues that arose during improper installation or modification.
If your clients already have a reliable technician they wish to use, it’s essential they check with their home warranty company whether this arrangement can be accommodated. While it may not be covered under their contract, reputable providers often allow clients to work with technicians they trust which saves both time and money while relieving stress. Furthermore, filing claims as soon as a problem occurs will speed the resolution process significantly.
Don’t Delay a Claim
Documenting maintenance can help expedite the repair process and help expedite repairs faster. Be sure to save emails with providers, and track any phone calls. Keeping records will serve you well should any disputes arise between yourself and the provider as evidence of their efforts to work with them.
Home warranties can be costly — usually with an annual premium and service call fee — yet if they remain unused, the money may feel wasted compared to investing it into an emergency fund that would earn interest over time.
Home warranties can be an invaluable aid for first-time and low-income homeowners who’ve put everything they can afford into purchasing a new home, according to Azpeitia. While they’re most often purchased by first-timers or those on fixed incomes, existing homeowners, landlords, tenants and sellers all can purchase policies as an added incentive when marketing properties for sale.
Don’t Forget About the Fine Print
Home warranties from reliable providers can provide peace of mind when home systems or appliances break down, more than justifying their annual fee for many homeowners.
An important component of any quality home warranty contract is clearly outlining all coverage options, clauses and exclusions so there will be no unpleasant surprises when filing claims.
An effective home warranty requires diligent record-keeping and attention to maintenance. As many companies require proof of regular maintenance in order to approve claims, keeping records is vitally important for maximum benefit from your home warranty.
As with any product or service, it is always prudent to conduct extensive research before purchasing a home warranty company. Reviews by customers, consumer protection records from consumer organizations and the contracts of each provider should all be considered when making your choice. Roxanne Downer brings over 15 years of experience as an award-winning news, finance and lifestyle journalist and editor to her work on home warranty companies.