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How to Get the Most from Your Home Warranty

When it come to home warranties, buyers should definitely read the contract carefully to understand coverages, limitations and exclusions. Basic coverage includes plumbing, electrical, heating systems and major appliances. In addition, Californians should understand the state’s regulations for companies that offer coverage. Do your homework. There are many resources and websites for you to research what company fits your homeowner needs.

How to Get the Most from Your Home Warranty

1) Call your home warranty company first when you need a repair.

When you have something in your house break, a leak happens, etc. the first thing you should do is call the company that handles your warranty. The reason is, if you call another company to come fix a leak, for example, and the leak turns out to be a bigger plumbing problem, your home warranty company might refuse to cover it. Use your home warranty company’s reps to fix your home emergency repairs first.

2) Just Give Me Cash

In some cases, you may want to just receive cash. You can ask your home warranty to get the equivalent in cash for the replacement cost for a broken item.

3) Renew, Renew, Renew

Those big ticket items are a great reminder that your home warranty is worth keeping around. One major repair will pay for itself for years. However, when it comes time to renew, make sure to do your homework. Look at all the options before you decide to continue with your home warranty company.

4) Ask for the List

Go ahead and ask for your home warranty company’s list of contractors. Therefore, you can check them out before calling a contractor out to your home for a repair.

5) Other Tips

  • Find out exactly what the contract covers and how much the service fee is. Pools, spa tubs and other specialty items might not be included.
  • Check to see if the company has policies on pre-existing conditions, and whether those repairs would be covered.
  • Find out how the company handles complaints about the contractors who handle repairs.
  • Ask if the company will let you buy a new appliance or item at a reduced rate if you would rather not have it repaired.
  • Read the contract in detail to find out how the company deals with problems such as leaks, mold, etc.

New Home Buyers

1) Do Your Homework

Make sure you are purchasing your warranty from a reputable company. Oftentimes, the contracts are often bought as closing gifts. Therefore, as the new homeowner, you did not actually choose the home warranty company, research the company and carefully evaluate the policy before it was purchased. Before you make an offer on the house, research the home warranty company.

2) Can You Add Additional Coverage?

If you are buying a new home and purchase a home warranty plan as part of closing escrow many home warranty companies have a provision to add additional coverage’s within thirty days of plan inception.

2) Final Walk Thru

Doing a final walk thru is extremely important before you purchase your new home. Make sure you are diligent.

  • Test all appliances to make sure they still work.
  • Turn on the heating and air conditioning systems for few minutes to see if they are work.
  • Make sure all outlets work. You can purchase a inexpensive electrical tester from the store.
  • Bring your home inspection report, a copy of your contract and the seller’s property condition disclosure form to check on specific flagged items.