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Should you get a Home Warranty when buying a Home?

A home warranty is an affordable way to cover the costs of unexpected mechanical failure of a major system or appliance in your new home. A home warranty is specifically designed to cover the kinds of repairs that home insurance does not: appliances, plumbing and electrical, air conditioning and furnaces, and pool equipment.

The average annual cost of a home warranty policy is between $250 and $400. Most home warranty companies offer comparable coverage within the same price range. The premium is payable at close of escrow and customarily protects you for one full year. Repairs are typically handled through the home warranty company with a minimal deductible. Often times the cost of the first year premium is offered as an incentive by sellers to solicit the sale of the property.

The age and condition of the home should be a consideration when choosing to purchase a home warranty. A fifteen year-old home with original equipment, versus a two year old home will likely have different financial risks. Your Realtor can help you decide if a home warranty policy is right for you based on your individual circumstances.

Why Should I Consider a Home Warranty?

Homeownership is expensive enough all on its own, without adding the cost of repairs and replacements. When moving into a home where appliances and systems have been previously used, there is always the chance that the general wear and tear, or the way in which they were previously used and maintained, could cause breakdown and/or complete failure. These repairs/replacements can be astronomically costly and often times occur unexpectedly. A home warranty will protect you financially from most of the frequently occurring breakdowns of home system components and appliances.

No matter what policy or Insurer you use be sure to read the details of coverage, ie: the fine print. Many of these companies require that you call them absolutely FIRST when a repair is needed. If you call your neighborhood plumber, hvac or electrician, then the insurance company may not cover the work. So be aware of this detail now, before any emergency repairs are needed.

Discuss your unique needs and concerns with your home warranty representative. If you do not have a trusted home warranty representative, your Realtor can refer you to one.

This information is meant as a guide. Although deemed reliable, information may not be accurate for your specific market or property type. Please consult a Realtor professional or home warranty representative for more information home warranty policies.

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Comment by Frank Popeleski on May 11, 2014 at 3:47pm

I recall back in the mid 1980's stationed in Albuquerque, bought a home. The weekend I moved in I did not have hot water. It was gas. They fixed that, the motor in the Dishwasher and put a 10X10 patch on the flat roof that showed water signed on the ceiing in the garage prior to purchase!  I got my moneys worth out of that one for sure.

Comment by Ryan Diedrich on May 5, 2014 at 8:27am

I got one on my house when I purchased one. The week i moved in the C/A went out and while replacing that the HVAC tech noticed my furnace had issues. I got both replaced for the $75 service charge. 

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