Getting a warranty on anything is generally a good idea as it assures you of the quality of the product or service or, at the very least, that you won’t have to pay out of pocket for repairs or replacements.
When it comes to moving into a new house, a home warranty policy is a choice you’ll have to make. A home warranty policy is essentially a service contract that covers the cost of maintaining household systems or appliances over a set period of time, like one year.
Although new homeowners may have ordered an inspection on the house they are about to purchase, some my still opt to get a home warranty policy especially on an older home.
For new construction homes, the policy is called a builder’s warranty, which usually comes with the purchase price. The policy covers the materials and workmanship of the home and lasts anywhere from six months to two years.
That said, getting a home warranty policy on a previously owned home costs around $600 a year, which comes up to around $50 a month.
Let’s look at the different repairs that can be done with a home warranty.
- HVAC maintenance, repairs, and replacements
Home repairs can be costly work. The latest estimates suggest that homeowners should expect to pay anywhere up to 4% of the value of their home on repairs per year. One of the most expensive home repair jobs is HVAC maintenance and repair.
HVAC repairs are generally much more expensive than repairs for other appliances and systems. They are also among the most common repair requests made on a home warranty policy. A service call alone can cost up to $100.
However, that’s the only out-of-pocket expense you’ll have to cover if you opted for the best home warranty insurance. To put that into perspective, you would have to pay over $7,000 on a full repair without a warranty.
Not everything is going to be covered by this initial fee, though. Customers may still have to pay a bit more for other things, such as labor and parts – but at heavily discounted rates. Therefore, you will still be able to get repairs or a brand new HVAC system at a fraction of the cost.
The most common HVAC problems include:
- Freon recovery and recharge
Freon is the gas that is used to cool the air that flows through an HVAC system. It’s also found in refrigerators. If there’s a Freon leak in your HVAC unit (which would be covered by the way), then you might need to get the line recharged. The cost of recharging a line varies from $35 to $175 per pound of Freon – and that’s on top of labor costs. Deal with one of the top 10 home warranty companies though, and you’re looking at a total cost of around $100 at the most.
HVAC units can benefit from a good pre-season tune-up. This is when an engineer checks for problems with the unit before the peak usage seasons of summer or winter. Therefore, checks occur in the spring and fall. With a comprehensive home warranty policy, you’ll only have to pay the flat fee for a service call.
What is the best home warranty? It’s one that covers plumbing. Plumbing is the second most common problem a home insurance policy covers. Around 25% of all requests that come into home warranty providers are about plumbing.
On average, plumbing repair costs between $180- $280 for both parts and labor. With a home warranty policy, though, the costs are reduced to that of a standard service call provided the fault is caused by normal wear and tear.
A homeowners warranty insurance also covers major appliances like trash compactors, ovens, garbage disposal, dishwashers, and other common appliances. Given that these appliances cost a lot to repair – and even more to replace – being able to have the job done for the cost of a service call is a real godsend.
Replacing the locks is one of the first things you should do after buying a new home. There’s no telling who has a set of the old keys. Getting new keys and locks can set you back from $10 to $28 per cylinder, and $35 to $75 for the service call.
If you take out a homeowners warranty insurance at the closing of a home, or it’s one of the contingencies you negotiated from the home seller, then rekeying might be the first thing you use the policy for.
Last but not least, we have electricians. Homeowners with a policy from one of the top 10 home warranty companies can expect to find electrical work included in their policy. That means only paying a service call fee to repair and replace wires, plugs, switches, junction boxes, circuit breakers, ceiling fans, wires, and more. Electrical work is another one of those things that can get costly fairly quickly so it’s good to be able to have everything done for a single flat fee.
All in all, a home warranty policy is a pretty smart purchase or contingency for the new homeowner. When your policy covers HVAC, plumbing, appliances, electrical work, and rekeying locks, among others, you protect yourself against costly maintenance and repair work.
Buying a home in East Washington?
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I’m Lori Lewandowski, a full-time, full-service, award-winning Realtor who’s served countless clients throughout the decades.
My reputation as a solid achiever among my peers and clients is well known. I believe that staying ahead of the curve is the key.
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