After working from home and social distancing for months, many people are breathing a sigh of relief now that restrictions are easing in most places. For some people, it is not just about getting their lives back. It is also a chance to ease the pressure on their home systems and appliances. SFGate recommends home warranty plans to cushion homeowners from the high cost of repairing and replacing home appliances.
In 2020, the demand for home appliances surged significantly, with some stores reporting shortages. Buyers interested in certain brands of dryers and refrigerators had to wait months for their orders to be fulfilled.
The surge may have been a result of behavioral changes, such as cooking and washing more. Since they spent more time at home, some people may have seen this as the best time for home improvements. However, some homeowners were forced to replace their home systems and appliances because they broke down.
What is a home warranty plan?
A home warranty is an optional coverage that homeowners purchase for their main home systems and appliances. This warranty helps to offset the cost of maintenance, replacements, and repairs. Depending on the agreement with the home warranty company, premium payments are made monthly or annually.
Homeowners insurance vs. home warranty
Homeowners insurance is a coverage that protects against acts of nature, such as fire and floods, which damage the home structure. Home insurance also compensates you for the theft of home items if they are covered in the policy. Should you take a mortgage, the bank will require you to have home insurance.
On the other hand, a home warranty is a contract between homeowners and the home warranty company. The agreement will include the list of items covered, the limit, and whether the contract covers the cost of servicing, repairs, and replacement.
Some home warranty companies cover all the systems and appliances in the home, while others offer specific coverage. For instance, some companies only offer warranty for home systems, such as heating, air conditioning, electrical, and plumbing. Others cover specific appliances, such as dishwashers, the oven, cooktop, refrigerator, and spa equipment.
Homeowners can benefit from home warranty plans in various ways.
Cover appliances no longer under warranty
If your home appliances are still under the manufacturer’s warranty, you don’t need to take additional coverage. However, if the warranty has expired, a home warranty plan may come in handy.
It is important to point out that home warranty companies do not cover preexisting conditions. These companies consider wear and tear. This is why many give a period, of say 30 days, before the warranty takes effect.
However, at least you will still get some financial relief should your covered appliances break down, especially if it is at a time when you cannot afford the cost of repair or replacement.
Dedicated customer service
A home warranty plan guarantees you will have professionals at your disposal should you need help. Whether your home system is due for service or your appliance needs repair, you only need to call the home warranty company.
No more anxiety over home systems and appliances
Every homeowner goes through moments of anxiety when a home system or appliance stops working. “ How much will it cost? How long will I go without air conditioning? Who do I ask for help?”
When you have a home warranty plan, all you need to do is report the problem and then let the experts handle it.
If your home systems and appliances are no longer under the manufacturer’s warranty, finding the right person to fix them can be challenging. Not only do you need to find the person with the knowledge and expertise to repair your appliance, but you need multiple contacts for the various appliances and systems in your home. This takes time, and sometimes, too much effort. A home warranty will save you time and effort.
No age restrictions
Home warranty companies will want to know the condition of the system or appliance they are covering. That’s it. They will not subject you to many questions and concerns regarding the age of your fridge, washing machine, or heating system.
As long as the home system or appliance is in good condition, you will receive a home warranty plan. The only difference is the home warranty company will offer a limit beyond which they cannot pay should there be a problem. For example, an old appliance may have a $1000 limit, while a newer appliance may be covered at not more than $3000.
Undoubtedly, home warranty plans are essential for all homeowners. Discuss the details of the warranty to ensure you understand the limits of the coverage.