Home warranties are an interesting thing, considering they can bring peace of mind but also affordable fixes for a home with older appliances. A seller may offer one in closing to sweeten the pot, which makes it a reasonable consideration for potential buyers. Even though a home warranty may sound like good financial protection, it is good to know more about them and whether this investment is worth making.
How a Home Warranty Works
A home warranty is a contract between a homeowner and a home warranty company. Costly repairs on appliances in a new home purchase can be difficult to swallow, especially after spending so much to move into the home. Home warranties typically cover repairs of a furnace, air conditioning unit, plumbing, and electrical systems. Major appliances like washers, dryers, and refrigerators are often also included. Most plans offer the basic coverage, but some additional components can provide a better umbrella for any repairs that are needed which exceed the basics.
Know the Costs
Even though a home warranty is only a few hundred dollars upfront for a year, the cost depends on what property is purchased. If the family owns a condo or townhouse, the warranty may cover more or less than a single-family home and costs will shift accordingly. The home's square footage does not impact the price unless the property is more than 5,000 square feet. Garages should be covered by the basic policy, also. Some other considerations:
Peace of Mind
A home warranty truly provides peace of mind to homeowners looking to pay the premium 'in the event something happens.' Much like any other insurance, those premiums get paid out in case something were to go wrong or something major breaks. For sellers of the home, a one-year home warranty with purchase can provide protection against buyer complaints later if defects arise. This does not exempt a seller from the legal requirement to disclose problems with the home upfront.
One gray area homeowners may not be aware of once they move is the 'proper maintenance' clause. This clause is the source of many disagreements between home warranty companies and warranty holders. Companies may use this clause to exclude or deny claims. The homeowner and contract who make the house call may disagree on what constitutes proper maintenance. If the furnace was not maintained by previous owners, for example, they may limit how much they payout or the company can deny payment of the claim. Another area that is not always discussed is the fact the premium may get paid yearly but that money could be put into a fund for emergency repairs that won't cost a premium upfront. Just because a premium is paid, and a contractor paid to visit the home, does not mean repairs will be made and the homeowner is out a few hundred dollars or more.
Although a home warranty is not a guarantee, it is protection against potentially expensive repairs. Prior to purchase, discuss it with the realtor. Find out the options and check around. Be sure to know your options before you buy one and make sure it is the right choice for you and your family.
Choice Properties works with families to ensure they make the best decisions possible when buying a home. We help you navigate the process of buying a home from the start of your search until closing. Our experts work hard to ensure you are satisfied with the process of looking for your family's next home. Call us if you are ready to find that perfect property to suit your needs.
January feels like a cold, bleak month but it can also be the best time to start fresh. Get started with some tips for how best to winterize a home by clearing space, boosting warmth and setting goals for the year ahead.
Frozen pipes can burst and cost a lot of money in repairs. Be sure to insulate outdoor pipes. While away from home, have a friend or neighbor check for any issues and make sure the shut-off valve is easily accessible in the event of a burst pipe.
Ice dams are areas of built-up ice which may accumulate around the roof line, causing leaks when snow begins to melt. Rake the snow off after each storm or break up existing dams to prevent further damage.
Heavy coatings of snow on tree limbs can cause breakage which may be dangerous, particularly if branches are located above a home. A broom or rake can gently knock snow off branches following a storm.
When heaters and wood fires kick in, it helps to make sure smoke and carbon monoxide detectors are in working order. Use a test button to determine functionality and change batteries as needed.
Food can go bad when it sits in the pantry too long. Wipe out shelves, clean up and go through the fridge and freezer to make sure it is all fresh and clean. Refreshing spaces will be helpful for health resolutions.
Closets accumulate alot of excess clothes and items which get forgotten about. Start fresh by clearing out anything that no longer fits and donate other items no longer in use.
Get refreshed play spaces by adding a few new items to set the stage for little ones to play and enjoy time indoors when it is too cold to play outside.
It can be a great time of year to think ahead to remodeling the kitchen, bath, adding or taking away paint and furniture. Think about some favorite places to get inspired either online or on television. Start contacting professionals who can provide free consultations to make the projects a reality.
This may also be the time to consider whether the existing space is a good fit or if another space would be better and start the search for a home (or vacation property) which can become a home away from home.
Choice Properties has award-winning real estate agents ready to assist you with your needs when it comes to searching for that perfect property. Call us to find out how to get started on finding that vacation or permanent home of your dreams.