Our lives in the twenty-first century are irrevocably bound to technology is one way or another, be it at work, home or for leisure time activities. Our daily routines are punctuated with the usage of machines and home appliances of all kinds, from a coffee maker to wake us up, an oven to heat the morning bagel, washed vessels out of the dishwasher to a carton of cold milk in the refrigerator.
Now that convenient and comfortable living is synonymous with the usage of home appliances, keeping them up and running becomes an absolute necessity – imagine going even a couple of days without a garbage disposal, coffee maker or refrigerator! Adding to the day to day need of these home appliances as a reason to make sure they are maintained, there is also the simple fact that they don’t come cheap, and if a little sprucing up now and then can keep them new, shiny, energy efficient and functional for longer, then why not!
Home appliances are not always sturdy enough to survive rough and constant use without maintenance and require a routine round of cleaning, servicing, and safety measures to be followed to make sure they work right. The unseen side of burnt grease in your oven, deposits in your dishwasher or corrosion of your washing machine coils can lead to your home appliances malfunctioning, and if you wait too long then the only solution left at your disposal may be a replacement.
Another extremely important factor to keep in mind when it comes to home appliances is that they are directly linked to your electrical systems and usually take up a large part of your electrical load. Even if a perfectly functioning washer or air conditioner uses up a considerable part of your total electrical consumption, and as the appliance begins to deteriorate, its efficiency when it comes to energy consumption only drops further. In fact, if the appliance is left too long and is affected by rust, corrosion or damaged internal circuits then it could even cause your home’s electrical system to short circuit or blow out.
Each of the home appliances has its own mode of functioning and requires specialized care and attention to certain details like coils, filters and external switches and controls. Though the general thumb rule is to make sure an overall level of cleanliness is maintained, here are a few things to keep a check on when it comes to individual appliance systems.
The first step to maintaining your home appliances effectively is getting acquainted with its major functioning processes and parts.
Filters and coils are the life of an air conditioner, the former keeping the airflow steady and clean and the latter doing the actual cooling and temperature stabilization within the machine.
A routine cleaning of air filters and replacement them when just cleaning is no longer sufficient is essential to keeping your air conditioner in a suitable working condition. When air filters get blocked with dust, grime and larger particles, the normal airflow is obstructed and the appliance uses a much larger amount of energy to pump in the same amount of air, making it an inefficient use of power. The dust that has settled will also transfer to the coil, creating a layer of insulation that will hamper its capacity to absorb heat. Adding to that, the filter will be unable to serve its primary purpose of purifying the air, and the room will gradually get laden with dust, causing allergies and other respiratory issues.
Depending on the climatic conditions of where you stay, or even if you have furry cats and dogs in the house, the need to clean the filter may become more frequent. Dust storms, humid weather causing the filter to get damp and clogged and a lot of dust being sucked into the filter can have the energy consumption of your air conditioner to drop anywhere from 5% to 15%, if not more. Also, check if your filters are reusable or have to be replaced after a certain period of time, because after a point, cleaning a non-reusable filter doesn’t help.
Dirt and grime aren’t isolated in only the filter; the evaporator coil and condenser coil of an air conditioner collect layers of dust as well. As the whole purpose of the coil is to act as a conductor, when an insulative layer settles on it, its ability to heat and cool reduces, reducing the effectivity of the cooling system as a whole. This, in turn, sucks at more energy to keep down the temperature of the room. Usually, a clean filter helps keep coils clean for longer, but eventually they too need to be cleaned.
Condenser units which are outside must be maintained as well, as they collect dust and debris very easily. Any obstruction to the airflow around them can be the cause of overheating and excess energy usage.
While the maintenance of an air conditioner is dependent on the air around your home, a washing machine’s upkeep is dependent almost entirely on the quality of water. Besides a general use of baking soda and detergent to run empty cycles and keep the machine fresh and smelling good, descaling and cleaning out lint are two essential tasks on your hand.
If you stay in a part of town that gets hard water supply, then cleaning your washer drum with an empty hot water cycle once a month is crucial. You can add a decalcifier right from your kitchen – either baking soda or white vinegar – to the hot water, or use a commercial decalcifier available in any supermarket.
The filter and pores of the washing machine are a part of keeping the drum fresh and dry, so make sure you check for any caught dirt, lint or hair in the filter and clean it out at least once a month.
Once the drum is clean and sparkly, shift your attention to the dryer. Invariably, a normal weight load shouldn’t take more than an hour to dry, at most. If the speed is dropping below this, or the dryer still gives you partially damp clothes after a full cycle, then it’s a good idea to check the vents and get them cleaned or replaced. A damaged dryer vent could be dangerous even when it comes heating up of the appliance, which could cause internal short-circuiting or even fires.
You can choose to call a professional, a vent replacement shouldn’t cost more than $100. If you prefer to check and clean yourself, start by removing the exhaust from the back of the washer-dryer, clean out the clogged lint in the crevices, and inside the tubes and opening in the back. You can use a long thin object to help you reach the narrow crevices, but don’t use anything sharp that can scratch off the film and cause more damage.
Any clogging of coils in a refrigerator directly obstructs the flow of air, making the generator unit of the machine use up more energy and work much harder to maintain the temperature inside the unit. Any debris can cause the coil to clog up, from dirt and dust to pet hair and particle lint. Use a rag to dust off the visible portions of the coil – usually located in a panel beside the door or at the back of the unit – and then do one quick round of vacuuming to make sure all the fine dust is taken care off.
The water filter in the refrigerator serves the purpose of purification as well as temperature moderation of the water in the ducts. If the filter’s working is compromised due to impurities, then there is a chance that you are being exposed to contaminated water. The process of replacing the filter is specific to each model of refrigerator, but it is usually a simple turn on either side to unlock the old filter from its place and lock in the new one. Replacing the filter at least 3 to 4 times a year is usually recommended.
A home appliance that is all about hygiene and is used on a daily basis, a broken garbage disposal can be a very difficult thing to deal with even for just a few days. To keep the foul smells, residue, and grime in check in the chute, a simple home remedy is to use a combination of ice cubes and either salt or white vinegar to sanitize it. Pour in the mixture, wash it down with cold water and then turn it on, adding activated carbon or lime peels and slices to cut out the odor.
Ovens that are self-cleaning are usually easy to maintain, but it is important to run regular cleaning cycles before the inside of the appliance is too caked with grease and food particles. A self-cleaning oven cuts out the need for chemical cleaning agents, using temperatures up to 900 degrees (Fahrenheit) to incinerate the leftovers within the oven and smoke them out.
Regular cleaning, in this case, is necessary to make sure that the smoke production in each cycle is kept to a minimum; it helps to use a soft absorbent pad and dust off the larger particles beforehand.
Ovens that do not have a self-cleaning preset must be maintained regularly and very carefully as well, especially since grease residue can cause fires and malfunctions in the thermostat, especially if the vent is clogged and doesn’t allow for fumes to escape. Warning: commercial cleaning compounds are safe to use but should never reach close to the electrical connections inside, or the heating elements as it could cause disaster reactions.
Microwaves can be maintained by just sponging them down on the inside and out to remove any dirt and spills. Check regularly if the door seal shut tightly, and in the case of an abrasion call for a professional to service it. If you feel the need to handle issues of smells within the microwave, one trick is to use a diluted mix of baking soda and water – keeping it to heat inside the appliance and removing it once it has completely cooled down.
While home appliances come with manufacturer warranties of their own, our usage of home appliances far surpasses the given period during which this warranty serves its purposes. What is more, when we buy a home then often home appliances come with it, many out of warranty or even maintenance.
Both in terms of cost effective servicing as well as hassle free problem solving, investment in a Home Warranty scheme can help you through every step of the process. From identifying the problem at hand to repair and replacement, companies provide unlimited support all year around on all your home’s major appliances and systems, giving you the freedom to delegate.
To know more about how to get yourself warranty, what coverage schemes are available, individual state laws and companies which are highly rated, scroll through the articles, reviews and guides on HomeWarrantyReviews.com – comprehensive information right from the consumer.
Home appliance protection plans are getting popular these days among homeowners. Such home warranty plans cover appliance repair costs and help homeowners with maintenance and repair services.
Home warranty plan is a contract to insure the appliances in case of breakdowns to cover-up the repairs or replacement.
Watch this video to know the basics of Home Warranty –
Home protection plan relieves you from unwanted stress and buys you peace of mind by providing the confidence that any repairs and replacement of your insured appliance will be taken care of by qualified service providers.
In case any of your insured appliances break down, first step is to place a service request by simply calling up your insurance company. Once the request is confirmed the same is sent out to schedule an appointment. Only the service fee will be collected to determine the problem and sort-out the issue.
Only the products listed in the insurance contract will be taken care of by the Home protection plan. Generally all major appliances like refrigerator, washer/dryer, bathtub, plumbing systems, electrical systems, ceiling fans, water heaters and garage door opener are covered in the insurance plan. If it is determined that your insured item cannot be repaired by a service contractor, then it will surely be replaced.
There are lots of home protection plans available in the market today. But it is not really hard to find which plan suits your requirements best, besides you just need to do some basic groundwork before deciding-
These are all the questions that you need to find the answers to before purchasing a home warranty policy. Some company policies cover only certain appliances while few are expensive. You need to be clear on all these issues.
Once you are certain about which plan suits your needs, compare the policy premiums and ensure the coverage plan. Finally, make sure the home warranty company is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, including weekends and holidays, so they are there when you need assistance. You can find such companies in our home warranty company directory. A home warranty company should have a toll-free number so it doesn’t cost money to call. Ensure that the customer support is available on easy track so that it helps in fast communication and service. Sign up with a company that has all the above mentioned facilities.
Planning to buy a Home Warranty policy? Watch this video –
When it comes to appliance warranty protection plans, the choices are plenty. Should you buy a comprehensive home warranty or extended warranty at the point of sale? While home warranty is like an umbrella insurance that covers all major home appliances, extended warranty is purchased for each appliance separately.
Home warranties will charge annual premium and deductibles per repair incident but they can be purchased anytime during the life-cycle of the product. Extended warranties will charge up front fees, but no deductible per incident and these protection plans are generally sold during the initial stages of product’s use, although there are exceptions.
Generally, home warranties cover all used appliances, but extended warranties cover new items only. Recently, Warranty Week ran an article that questioned whether there is an overlap between the two. They interviewed several executives from home warranty and extended warranty companies. The general consensus appears to be that, there is some overlap, however two types of warranties serve different purposes.
Mike Frosch, president of The Warranty Group, North America, said “Home warranties are great, when you’re buying or selling a house and want to cover used appliances immediately. Service contracts are great, when you’re shopping for new appliances and want to extend the manufacturer’s warranty for additional years. So in a sense, the coverage may overlap, but the offers don’t really compete. When you buy a home warranty, for the sake of argument let’s say it’s $450. It’s a one-year coverage on used equipment. It’s providing some coverage on some amount of appliances, but it’s really about heating, air conditioning, plumbing and electric”
In our view, they do overlap if you are talking about big ticket appliances, but there is no need to buy both. If you are buying a new appliance, chances of it failing in the first 3-5 years is far less assuming you have researched the product before buying. So, there is no real need for extended warranties.
However, if homeowners still want peace of mind coverage, then they should simply go with home warranty as it covers all appliances in your home not just one specific product. The home warranty costs are higher than the extended warranty, however it covers far more items and you have a single point of contact for all repair needs.
Extended warranty companies argue that they provide better service and offer more economic protection plans. The argument is compelling on the surface, but keep in mind home warranties are useful where there is frequent need for repair such as old appliances.
We wonder what would be the service level if extended warranty companies offer maintenance service of 10-15 years old appliances such as heaters and air conditioners. The repair needs are much higher and their profit margins are much lower. Generally extended warranties are bought for new electronics items and repair incidents are much lower. For this reason, we think it is a wise decision not to buy extended warranty at point of purchase.
The intensive cultivation of plants in small living spaces, growing a micro-garden has become an urban phenomenon in the past decade. Using gardening tricks like vertical gardening and hanging planters, you can optimize the space at your disposal to garden away from your worries and reap rich health benefits out of it!
Growing a micro-garden is all about the management of space – be it a little strip of soil at the base of your porch or a few feet of a landscaped garden on your terrace.
Creating depth and dimension by using mounds, tiny hills and valleys can add to the surface area, and provide for different plant types at the same time.
Give the carrots and beets a little extra room to grow below the surface, allowing for the daisies to flourish in the shallow end.
Micro-gardening also requires you to plant in tandem with what the space can handle. Planting broccoli and cauliflower in pots for example, narrows down the yield to one plant per pot, each only giving you crop once. On the other hand, salad leaves, peas, peppers or vegetable creepers can last a whole season and feature at the dining table pretty much every meal.
Choosing to landscape your yard, however small, with only grass uses up the nutrients in the soil and requires way too much water to maintain. Hit two birds with one stone – aesthetics and fresh organic produce, and all from your own garden.
It doesn’t have to be all about the produce, and along with chemical-free homegrown vegetables can be great for your health, the lush maroons of beet leaves along with dwarf lemon trees and even cherry tomatoes can make for a beautifully landscaped micro-garden – a decorative landscaping strategy!
For your fruit bearing plants to flourish and the plants – both edible and flowering – to retain their strength and reproducing ability each year, pollination cannot be ignored. Herbs such as rosemary and basil act as great pollinators, as do flowers of plants such as squash and eggplant with their bright shades of yellows and violet calling for attention.
Gardening in limited yard spaces, pots and containers confine the availability of soil nutrition to a great extent, making it all the more important to consciously fertilize the soil during the planting process with compost and then keep it up with regular top soil additives.
Making sure that the plant grows to its fullest though the space available is restricted, fertilizers can not only boost the speed of fruit bearing but also keep the plant healthy and pest-free.
Nutrition can be kept at its optimum by using companion planting as well. A technique known often as soil real-estate, planting pairs of creepers and trees with tubers – potatoes under tomatoes, or carrots and onions under herb bushes for example – can not only save space but also allow the soils nutrients to cater to the different needs of different plants, often even replenishing itself.
Not all plants require yards and balconies, in fact, those precious kitchen spices and herbs can grow right at the kitchen window sill, as long as they get a daily dose of sunlight. From thyme and parsley to even ginger and tender garlic and pepper, windows work as just the right bridge between the elements outside and the comfort of your home.
It doesn’t have to be herbs in the kitchen, pretty much any window which is east facing can act as an active decorative space – full with pansies, gardenias, and purple passion, amongst many others.
Look at every space with a new perspective, and you can extend your micro-garden to creepers on the mailbox posts, cacti in broken crockery, lettuce along the walkways and even grapevines on the gate.
Hanging gardens aren’t off the table either – containers hanging on fences and railings or even simple hooked pots from the ceiling can overflow with creepers, maybe even some fruit bearing. The added benefit of hanging gardens, as opposed to those rooted in the soil, are that they can be moved around, making them easy to clean and shift according to season or sun exposure.
The fun of micro-gardening is its perfect balance between creativity and good-old landscaping. Don’t think of it as just a conventional utilization of your green thumbs; you can grow your garden in anything from old tires to broken tanks and fish bowls!
Cracked vessels make great containers as well, especially since the crack acts as a ready drainage system.
Decide which plant to pot according to your container size, a large plant will not grow in a small container and the other way round is just a waste of space. Also provide enough water to your container garden, as containers that have soil in them dry out faster and those nutrients flush out sooner.
Everyone’s heard of the famous vertical gardens scaling up walls in Hong Kong and Singapore, but they can just as easily be recreated right at home. With vertical gardens, there is a range of methods that you could employ; from the use of a traditional trellis to a recycled pallet planter or hanging hydroponic window gardens.
Accommodating everything from tomatoes and strawberries to squash and melons, these micro-gardens function just the same way as any others do, as long as the plant isn’t one that has very deep roots.
We’ve explored possibilities flat on the ground, scaling walls and even creeping up poles and pillars, but we have one last treat for you micro-gardeners – upside down hanging gardens.
Provided you choose plants with a dense root structure and support them well, upside down planters can hold and nourish anything from cherry tomatoes to strawberries and even kale – all with the added fun of seeing your garden head first!
For those of you who have space for soil beds, raising the bed a few inches or even a couple of feet off the ground can greatly help the gardening process. Giving the roots more space, allowing the excess water to drain and letting you restrict the soil to only where you want it, raised soil beds maximize space and minimize effort.
Having the plants a couple of feet off the ground reduces your need to hunch as well, a sure blessing for your spine.
Besides the weekly dusting off of topsoil, checking for cracks in the containers and weeds strangling the plants, micro-gardening is too close to your living space for you to not keep an eye on its possible repercussions.
None that can cause serious immediate damage, any micro-gardener must know that a part of the job is to keep a check out for seepage on the walls and possible weight bearing issues related to rooftop gardens and heavy planters.
Not allowing these concerns to come in the way of you keeping your green fingers busy, HomeWarrantyReviews.com acts as a threshold for you to enter the world of Home Warranty. A simple, quick and reliable escape from service and repair related errands and coordination. Home Warranty Reviews ensures peace of mind for you by providing with the vast knowledge base of research, ratings, and free tools so that your home never runs out of home warranty coverage according to your specific needs by calculating what exactly you want!
Just as we have discussed the various aspects of micro-gardening, what to do and what not to do when you garden at home and all tips and tricks on how to get the best out of it, HomeWarrantyReviews.com gives you a chance to explore the world of home warranty from the inside, with tips and tricks of its own. With access to reviews from professionals as well as customers, consumer research based articles give you the best of both worlds – the technical aspects as well as the personal experiences of users and agencies.
Household appliances are mostly large pieces of equipment which cost quite a lot of money. Most homeowners use their appliances until they break down, which is usually a span of 10 – 20 years. However, if you don’t practice caution or do adequate research, you may end up buying a product that does not suit your needs, which causes both financial loss and frustration.
While planning a purchase in advance helps you find the lowest price, it may not always be possible. If your AC breaks down during summer when the heat and the AC unit prices are high you will not have a choice.
You could be someone who is either needing an appliance urgently or you could be someone who expects a certain appliance to crash soon and is looking for replacement. In the first case, you will rush to the closest store or look up online to find one that suits your needs. While doing this, you may ?tend to get sidetracked and forget your actual needs.
Some people buy appliances because they are visually appealing or if it comes at a very low price or if it has attractive freebies. All of this leads to you ending up with an appliance that does not suit your requirements. You’ll probably regret your purchase immediately.
To avoid this, before you start to shop, analyze your requirements. Make a list of the following-
Write down the answers on a paper and keep it with you while you shop. If you are merely looking for an exact replacement, write down the model no. and manufacturer’s name and pay a visit to your closest appliance store.
Imagine the horror if you buy an appliance and bring it home only to find out that it doesn’t fit where you wanted it to?
To avoid that, measure the space where you plan to keep the appliance. Do it twice to avoid minor errors. Keep the measurements with you while you shop. Once you visit a store, select appliances that match your measurements.
However, if you feel that appliances that come in the size you need do not have the features you require, it’s best to either make space for a larger one or find out if there are used variants of the model you need.
If you wish to get the best price, don’t expect to find it in the first store you look. Visit several shops or websites, if you are purchasing the appliance online and compare prices. Don’t get swayed by the freebies. Most e-commerce websites and shops provide great deals during festive seasons. If you are planning your purchase in advance, Black Friday sales are the best time to buy appliances (or most things, for that matter).
If the requirement is urgent, you’ll have to make do with whatever’s available. Once you zero in on a model, look up online to see who offers the best price.
It might be a good idea to look an appliance that comes with a warranty. Most products come with a manufacturer’s warranty, but some stores do sell extended warranties for products they sell.
Some stores like, Home Depot and Lowe’s also offer extended warranty for specific appliances. Extended warranties are different from home warranties and are ideal if you need coverage only for a certain appliance which is no longer covered by it’s manufacturer’s warranty.
If you are planning to purchase an used appliance, you need to be extra careful. Find out why the appliance is being sold – is it because the owner upgraded or is it because the appliance sustained major breakdowns?
Examine the appliance thoroughly before you make the buy. Also ask for warranty papers and bills. Buying one without the relevant papers may not be a wise step.
Appliance purchases cost substantial amounts of money. Buying the wrong product will leave you troubled. Make the purchase only after you are convinced that it is the best option.
Hope you enjoyed the article, happy shopping!
Summer is the ideal time for furnace repair and maintenance, and other heating repair problems. One reason for this is the accessibility of furnace technicians. Another is that preventative maintenance is always less worrying than furnace repair when its’ freezing outside.
During hotter months, furnace repair maintenance can be taken care of by widely available professionals at a time when you are not depending too heavily on your heating system. And it’s probable that you won’t have to remain in line.
Some HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) dealers even provide incentives or other specials for heating repair services all through summer, which means that can fit you in and you won’t be left in the cold.
Your furnace was fabricated to last for several years, and you can considerably extend that time by performing usual, preventive maintenance.
A furnace that is not running at peak performance can be fatal. Carbon Monoxide is a natural product of partial combustion. Nearly every gas furnace generates some Carbon Monoxide, which is normally carried from your home through the furnace’s venting. A clean, competently burning gas furnace produces very little amounts of carbon monoxide, while as inefficiently, dirty burning one can produce toxic amounts. Carbon Monoxide is colorless, odorless and cause flu-like symptoms, confusion, disorientation and even death.
It is suggested that you have your furnace checked and cleaned each year. The older the furnace, the more essential this service is. Newer furnaces are outfitted with many features that shut the furnace off when a problem is spotted. Older furnaces have no such devices. Eventually, furnaces can build up small cracks in the combustion chamber. These cracks may not be noticeable with naked eye. It is through these cracks that Carbon Monoxide can leak into your home.
It is also vital to change your furnace filter frequently. The filter is normally found just inside the front cover of the furnace. It may have its own access door on the front cover of the furnace. A clean filter will efficiently burn your furnace and will prevent dust from being circulated through your home.
This is a quick, simple job all homeowners or tenants can do. A new filter makes your furnace more energy-efficient and saves money too.
The following tips will assist you keep your furnace running ably for as long as possible, and hopefully limit expensive repairs down the line.
To make yourself acquainted with your furnace you may want to assess how a furnace works, and implement some of the preventative repairs yourself. Here are a few things you can deal with, if you are up to it:
As with any important appliance or part in your home, proper maintenance is essential for making sure that your gas furnace will last as long as it should. With some simple steps and regular inspections from a competent service provider, you can get the most out of your home’s furnace. Home Warranty Reviews is the place for trusted consumer reviews about HVAC professionals.
If you wish to hire a specialist, go well-armed into your search for a company. Here are a few questions that you could ask of the HVAC dealer you are bearing in mind:
Get rid of all hindrances from the fireplace and flue before you start a fire. Burn only well seasoned wood. Do not start a fire with highly combustible fuels such as gasoline or lighter fluid. Charcoal and other coal products can emit toxic fumes and must not be used. Bear in mind to also have a good aeration as the fire is consuming oxygen. Always use a fireplace screen to prevent sparks from flying into the room. And keep the damper open while fire is burning and when it is dying out.
If your heating equipment is out of order for an extended period of time, you might wish to consider staying with family or friends or in hotel/motel, mainly if there are elderly people or infants in your family.
Extended use of the open oven in a closed house burns oxygen, thus causing improper combustion of gas, which produces a deadly carbon monoxide gas.
Next to the so important health insurance each individual should have, there stands as second in line the home insurance. For homeowners, the home insurance is a specifically well tailored preventive measure any damages should happen to their property. The most important fact before you settle for one certain type of home insurance policy, is to ask yourself which kind of insurance do you actually need.
For example, if you live in a high risk area where floods happen quite often, then you should take an extra option for flood insurance. Certainly because your property lies in a high risk area, the flood insurance for your home is an extra option, it will not be included in the policy, and it will cost more. It is you, who should decide whether you need it or not. Bear in mind that it is not only the physical property which needs protection, but also your personal belongings (i.e. jewelry), and don’t forget about personal liability issues. Find the quickest way to get insurance quotes compared online.
The market offers you plenty of choices, and that is why it is so hard to make a choice. Settle your priorities first, see how much you can afford to pay for the insurance premiums and which are those aspects which definitely need insurance coverage. You have to watch out for the advertisements which offer too high discounts, but little or not effective coverage for you. The points where you can save when buying a home insurance is basically if you apply for one online (can bring you up to 15% savings), there are also certain new buyer discounts, plus if you make no claims for a number of years since you have the insurance, that could lower the price of your insurance with as much as 50% in some cases.
Some of the main coverage factors within a home insurance policy should contain:
Certainly the amounts to which the above mentioned situations are covered for, differs from one insurer to the other, but these should be contained in a standard home insurance plan. As for the extra options you may choose, these are plenty, and each homeowner chooses according to his needs and best interest. On the extra options list you may settle for Accidental Damage, which simply means protection for accidental damage of your stereo equipment for example. Then, the personal possessions cover is yet another extra option, which compensates you for loss of money or credit cards up to a certain coverage
limit, or accidental damage loss or theft of personal items. The family and legal protection extra option will offer coverage for almost any legal costs up to a certain amount, disputes revolving around employment issues, or property and inheritance related ones. Plus, the home emergency option will offer a helping hand in case your door lock breaks, your electrical heating fails, so that you don’t have to worry about the incurring costs a professional would charge for an emergency repair to your home. Check and discus with your family all the available options pertaining to home insurance in general, and settle for the one which is the most affordable and efficient regarding your personal needs.
Since you searched for this online, it is possibly true that you are frustrated beyond possible limits, because your Insurance Company, that you hired to make your life easier, is in fact annoying you. Let’s not waste time, this article explains the strategy that you must adopt in the event that your Insurance company acts tough on your claim.
Let’s take you over the essentials first. The points that follow must be adhered to , otherwise you stand a chance to lose the fight against the Insurance company.
Gather all the information you can regarding your damaged device eg Manufacturer’s name, model no, batch no, claim center’s details, basically anything that is required. You should have them ready before you call up the Insurance Company. Keep the info that you gathered in the same place, this is will make accessing them easier. Keep your policy booklet and contract ready as well.
Once you have gathered all the required information, call the Insurance company. It is suggested that you don’t place your call on Mondays as it is the busiest day of the week. You should keep records of the following:
Remember that being rude is not going to reap any rewards. The Representative on the other end of the line is possibly more frustrated than you are as they have to deal with annoyed customers like you all day.
If you follow the above two rules, you might get a positive response from the Insurance company soon. But there are cases where even good manners and genuine claims fall on deaf ears. If you are experiencing something like that, read on.
Call them up at a later time: This may help if the representative you talked to is a kind fellow. Or they may decide to help you just so that you stop annoying them with constant calls. Give it a try.
Speak with a supervisor: We are not sure how much this would help, but it is still worth a try.
Threaten them: Yes, you read that right. You probably had thought about it already. First, tell them that you had been a loyal customer and that you will be disappointed if your issue is not resolved. If that does not work, threaten them by telling them that you will terminate your contract if your grievances are not solved immediately. When you do this, they will ask you why you want to terminate your contract. Proceed on telling them how your constant pleas and calls were ignored.
Threaten them some more: It might be helpful if you threaten them by saying that you will tarnish their reputation by bad mouthing them. Declare that you are going to publicise the details of how you were treated and you can even tell them that you will announce the same through various social media.
BBB: The Better Business Bureau (BBB) is one such institution that mediates between the customers and the businesses to resolve issues. Place a complaint with them . The BBB is not a government run organization, however they are advocates of integrity and ethics. They do keep records of all the complaints. No institution wishes to be in the bad list of the BBB.
Attorney General’s office: If you genuinely feel that you are being victimized, you can complain to the Attorney General’s office. They will conduct enquiries and try to resolve the issue. If you do not wish to do this, then simply threaten the Insurance Company by telling them that you will complain to the Attorney General’s office.
Last resort: The lawsuit threat. This should not be used unless your case is that compelling. Most biggies in the Insurance field have their positions covered legally and you may lose unless you have a strong case against them.
We are sorry that we can’t give you a name, but we will do the next best thing. We will tell you about all the qualities you need to look for in a most reliable Home Warranty company.
For those of you who feel that you don’t know enough about home warranties and matters related to it, we suggest that you go through detailed description about a Home Warranty plan section.
So, you are on the look out for a Home Warranty company that gives you the best plan that suits your budget well. For that, first, lets discuss how to figure out what’s best for you.
Once this is done, let’s get to the fun part. Here’s a list of features that describe the most reliable Home Warranty company.
Look for a company that offers varying packages based on coverage. The company should be able to provide you with a lot of options on the extent of coverage. If you can find a company that offers a tailor made plan for you, it would be great, provided the plan is affordable. Not all appliances and systems covered, so please understand the coverage terms. Pre-existing conditions may not be covered under some plans and lack of maintenance issues are almost always not covered.
Did you know that most companies prefer to repair and not replace damaged devices? And because of this, you must thoroughly understand the companies policies regarding this. Go through the terms and conditions mentioned in the policy booklet carefully. A reliable company will always look out for your appliances and will replace them if it is needed.
The importance of this aspect cannot be overstated. Ensure that the firm you choose has a 27 x 7 customer service wing whom you can call up at any time. They are the people with whom you will be communicating in case an issue occurs. So make sure that they are available around the clock and also enquire about the average time taken to get a response followed by filing your complaint. If you prefer filing claims online, check if the company has online claims processing options.
Seamless customer support is definitely part of an ideal company.
Ensure that the company you choose has a local branch or at least a good network of contractors in your neighborhood. In case they do not have qualified contractors in the area, make sure you are allowed to choose your own vendors.
Your insurance company should always provide you with the service of trained and experienced service technicians. They are the people who are responsible for fixing your damaged gadgets so it is highly important that they have a good record. Speak to an agent and inquire about the quality of vendors that are hired by the company. Vendors must be thoroughly screened by the company.
It is never a bad idea to refer to the record of the State Insurance Commission or BBB to ensure that the company you are planning to choose has a clean history. Picking a company that has a history of lawsuits and bad reviews can never live up to your expectations. You can also ask your friends and family to recommend a company based on their experiences. Always choose a company with good reputation to make the most of the deal.
This article is just a brief description about the qualities of a good Home Warranty company. This is not a rule or guideline. Home Warranty plans can cost anywhere between $250 to $700 per year, so it is necessary that you make an informed decision. You can get a free quote or estimate on home warranty plans before you choose any company.
Happy Home Warranty shopping!
Here at HomeWarrantyReviews.com we deliver thousands of new, free-to-read, customer reviews and ratings of home warranty companies each year, along with several Complaints. Best of all, we don’t charge companies or our website users anything for those reviews and ratings! Our service is still free after nearly a decade online, and we’re proud of that. Our readers have come to know us as a place where a home warranty shopper or customer can find what they need on the internet. Our reviews are objective, and though we do edit them to ensure that fake reviews or ones which lack value for readers don’t clutter up the website, we never make it possible for a home warranty company that is not keeping its promises to customers to cover that up by paying to have negative reviews hidden or removed.
We keep things real here, and our readers can tell by the mix of positive and negative reviews for each company. And whether you’re posting a review in order to have your voice heard or shopping for a reliable home warranty company, the work we do here and the value we provide through our free service is immediately impacting tens of thousands of homeowners. Reviews are only part of the way in which we help our readers and the home warranty companies who keep the industry alive and growing. That’s what keeps us doing what we do.
One of our lesser known services is our Complaint Resolution Program, and it not only serves customers in need of a way to resolve their negative experiences but also helps companies manage their online reputation, ensuring that the occasional mistake by one of their employees or contractors doesn’t result in a lost customer.
The Complaint Resolution Program is extremely simple for both sides of the relationship between the home warranty company and the customer. There is absolutely no charge to use it, and there’s no obligation on the part of the company or the customer to use it. It’s the best of both worlds. But how does the Complaint Resolution Program, or CRP as it’s also called, work?
If you’ve visited many reviews websites online today then you are probably already aware of the trend toward companies posting responses to customer complaints. Sometimes these responses appear to have a real, positive effect on the customer’s level of satisfaction. A company might not have been fully aware of the problems the customer encountered with a home warranty claim or another service. The company might have had a bad apple that poorly represented them to the customer or mismanaged the claim process. Anything can happen after all. So responses from companies sometimes lead to meaningful reactions between the parties, and problems get solved. But other times a response from a company feels more like a defensive maneuver. You’ve probably seen some of these yourself. The company posts the same response under every negative review, and there seems to be no sign of resolution among any of the reviews.
When a customer takes the time to post a complaint on an internet reviews website, the party posting the review typically has probably traveled through the company’s various routes of complaint resolution, but not always. At times, a negative experience begins and ends with one person on the company’s team or their repair contractor. And those situations might be resolved in many cases with action from people at the company who are higher up in the decision-making processes. This is where the CRP process can really help the company and the customer.
When a user posts a review on HomeWarrantyReviews.com that has a low rating, the website prompts the author of the review to decide if he or she would like to have another chance at seeking resolution of the problem. This very simple and free, and most of all optional, offer to the consumer is where the CRP process starts. If the customer decides that it’s worth trying once more to resolve the problem then simply selecting to participate in the CRP is a single click away. Once opted into the program, the customer will be able to correspond through private emails, hosted by HomeWarrantyReviews.com, with the company. And the company representative assigned to handle CRP cases will be able to help the customer, sometimes with greater problem escalation abilities than the average customer service representative.
While this process is going on, the negative review is not visible on the website. And this part is important to both parties. Sometimes when we’re upset we make hasty remarks. Later we regret those same remarks. So for the customer and the company CRP presents a cooling off opportunity in which the consumer has the chance to have a problem solved before the review is out there for others to read. If the problem is resolved then the party who wrote it may choose to not have it posted on the website. In that case, the company’s reputation is saved a blemish, and the customer is afforded a chance to successfully resolve a problem. Both parties win, and neither are out an additional dollar for the service.
Companies that use the CRP are not just solving one-off problems for their customers. In some cases, they’re opening a new, cost-efficient, window to customer feedback. Any company which pays for customer satisfaction surveys or other third party consultative services related to reputation management knows how costly these services can be. What if a company could find a way to get the same kind of feedback without an additional expense? Now they can.
Building the CRP was all about giving our reviewers and the companies they review a more productive experience and ensuring that the good companies don’t wind up looking bad, simply because of mistakes or unidentified problems that the company should be working to resolve for future customers as well as current ones. We set out to build something that would help all the people we serve, the companies and customers alike. And in the process, we aimed to help even more people, particularly the ones who will have a better customer service experience as a result of companies taking an active role in learning from their customers’ complaints.
HomeWarrantyReviews.com didn’t invent the concept of complaint escalation or creating specialized teams at companies that specialize in helping the most unhappy customers. But we did bring the missing piece to the reviews process on our website, and we believe it makes all the difference. Once you create a forum where unhappy customers can receive help from the most specialized customer service representatives at home warranty companies then the next step is for the companies to seize the opportunity to use that forum to its full potential. We believe that companies that use the CRP the best are ones that empower their teams to react to the complaints received through the CRP in a way that satisfies reasonable customers who have honest and fair objections to the way they were treated by the company or those the company allowed to represent them, repair contractors included.
Companies that use the CRP are in a unique position in which they can not only reduce the number of bad reviews they collect on our website but also increase customer retention. And keeping customers is something that companies that post a boilerplate response to complaints online probably are not doing.
If you are a company representative then you can send us an email at [email protected], to address your queries for CRP enrollment and we’ll help you get started with the quick setup process. Your company will need to designate an email address to receive the CRP case notifications and new customer correspondence notices at. And you’ll need to make sure that you have team members checking that email inbox very regularly.
If you are a customer who has had a bad experience with your home service contract or home warranty, and you’d like help resolving the problem then please use the search box below to find the company you want to be contacted by. If that company is not participating in the CRP then you can email us at [email protected], and we will forward your request for help to the company representative we have on file. We will also let them know that it would have been great if they’d been participating in the CRP, so your problem could have been dealt with more quickly today.
Here is a list of most read articles about home warranty on our site. Enjoy your reading and provide us your feedback!
Home Appliance Warranty Plans – What is appliance protection plan and how does it help homeowners
Extended Home Appliance Warranty – Things you should consider before buying an extended appliance warranty policy.
FAQs on home warranty plans – This section covers most frequently asked questions about the protection plan
Five Types of Appliance Protection Plans – Covers various kinds of warranties such as appliance warranty, manufacturers warranty, extended warranty, sellers warranty, home service contract etc.
How to choose a home appliance warranty plan – This article explains how to choose a home warranty plan and the service provider company.
Is home warranty necessary for buyers and sellers – Explains if home warranty is needed for sellers as well as buyers.
Average appliance repair costs – Provides a list of average appliance repair occurance percentages to help you decide whether you need to participate in a home warranty program.
Home warranty quotes – Home warranty quotes, coupons and deals
Is home warranty really an insurance? – Not necessarily. This articles explains why you cannot bank on home warranty for all your repair and replacement needs.
Home maintenance Tips – How to take better care of your sweet home
How to pursue insurance claims – How to pursue a claim when the service provider company is acting tough on your claim.
An Open Letter to Home Warranty Industry – An open letter written by someone who worked in the home warranty industry for a long time. Author provides an insightful view of the industry. The views and opinions expressed are author’s own.
American Home Shield, the nation’s largest home warranty provider, announced that it has launched a new website to help first-time homebuyers. While there are many resources available online, the new website, FirstHomeResources.com aims to be a one-stop shop for consumers ready to buy their first home.
A recent survey from the National Association of Realtors (NAR) showed that owning a home is a high priority for 51 percent of renters. With this kind of figure, it is apparent that more help is needed for anxious first-time home buyers who will be hungry for thorough information. FirstHomeResources.com is a comprehensive website for home buyers who are scouting for information online.
Speaking on this initiative, Philipp von Holtzendorff-Fehling, Chief Marketing Officer of American Home Shield said “American Home Shield’s mission is to make home ownership easier and this website is just an extension of that mission”.
He said purchasing a home is a complicated and daunting process for first-time homebuyers as it requires significant planning and research efforts. The company has built this website as a free resource to help future homeowners navigate the pitfalls and prepare for the unexpected.
We at HomeWarrantyReviews.com, present a comprehensive review of the new website.
At first glance, the site looks amicable and contains menu bars for easy navigation. Here are the menu choices and a closer look at the features offered.
This section introduces you to homeownership, its benefits and responsibilities and how owning a home can build equity when compared to renting one. As a first-time homebuyer, it is important that you recognize the nuances of a buyer’s market. Also in limelight are the most vital aspects of buying such as mortgages & creditworthiness, as well as the credit score system, affordability and mortgage plans.
It then moves on to explain the home market and types of homes to look for. “Planning your Search” section provides insights on working with a real estate professional in finding a home. This area stresses the fact that the Internet is the best place to research and gather relevant data.
You can also download a complimentary copy of the “First-time Homebuyer Guide” which contains key tips and checklists to plan your purchase and move.
Making a purchase is probably the most crucial juncture in fulfilling the dream of owning a home. This segment covers diverse aspects surrounding the deal. From hiring an inspector to helping you assess the pros and cons of a property, to shopping for mortgage and more, detailed purviews are provided here. This section also covers the value of a home warranty and traditional homeowners insurance along with the benefits of those services. For a homeowner, a home warranty can provide important protection against unexpected expenses when covered major appliances/systems break down due to normal wear and tear.
If you have struck a happy deal with the seller and are settling down, refer to this section for links and websites to help homeowners. While many websites listed are primarily the services offered by Service Master, this section also covers some external websites.
This area gives an opportunity to enter a drawing to win iTunes gift cards from American Home Shield. Two $50 gift cards and one $500 gift card will be given away each week and an additional $3000 winner will be drawn monthly. The sweepstakes is open now through 10/31/13.
American Home Shield is a subsidiary of The ServiceMaster Company and is the industry leader in the home warranty industry. Founded in 1971, AHS services more than 1.3 million customers across 49 states in the US. The Memphis-based company employs approximately 1,800 employees and has a national contractor network made up of over 10,000 independent home-service contractors.
With a global network of more than 7,300 company-owned, franchise and licensed locations, Memphis-based ServiceMaster is one of the world’s largest residential service networks. The company’s high-profile brands are Terminix, TruGreen, American Home Shield, ServiceMaster Clean, Merry Maids, Furniture Medic and AmeriSpec.
Disclaimer: The information provided here is to educate homeowners with the latest industry updates. We are not advising for or against any of the above companies.
Most homeowners are quite concerned about maintaining their household appliances in good working condition. Any homeowner worth his salt will admit that it is no easy task. Hence it calls for some expertise in the form of appliance maintenance plans. What confuses homeowners is the fact that there are so many appliance maintenance plans out there and they end up wondering which ones to sign up for!
Here’s an article that’ll help you decide what plans you need to buy to ensure smooth running of your household appliances, while going easy on the pocket too.
There are quite a few things you need to consider before you decide whether or not you need an appliance maintenance plan.
In short, folks who have old appliances, lack DIY repair skills and sufficient money and do not have a trusted contractor should purchase some form of protection for their household appliances.
Let’s make this easier for you. An HVAC maintenance plan covers only heating, ventilation and cooling units. A basic home warranty plan covers all the major systems and appliances in the home which includes HVAC units and other appliances too. In simple terms, the coverage is often more for home warranty contracts.
Let’s take a look at some of the common advantages
Now let’s take a look at the advantages separately
Advantage of HVAC maintenance plans:
Advantages of Home Warranty plans:
Who needs an HVAC maintenance plan?
The U.S Dept. of Energy advises having your HVAC systems checked at least twice a year. This could be expensive for some.
Homeowners whose homes are aged should definitely think about purchasing a home warranty plan. It covers more than just your HVAC units. Ideally, following are the types of homeowners who need a home service contract:
Although most home warranty plans include coverage for HVAC units, the services are not as extensive as provided by an HVAC plan built specifically with heating and cooling needs in mind. If you feel that you are okay with basic coverage, then it would make more sense to go for a home warranty as your other appliances get protection too. Another option (safer one) is to buy a home warranty plan that covers on general household appliances and electrical systems and then to top it up with an HVAC plan. It may cost a little more than just a single plan, but it will be useful in the long run.
Yet another vital thing to do is to get your HVAC appliances get checked by a professional at least once a year. Regular maintenance checks are often helpful in diagnosing problems at an early state. Hence, no matter what the age or the make is, annual maintenance checks are a must for every HVAC appliance/system.
You can also read about Home Maintenance Tips on our website. We host several articles that explain the maintenance regimes for various household appliances and systems.
Remember, no matter how much thought you give into deciding a plan, if you don’t take the same effort for picking a reputable company, it may disappoint you. Always, we repeat, always select a trusted warranty provider and do sufficient research before you sign the contract. You can visit websites like ours, HomeWarrantyReviews.com, to see reviews and ratings about various warranty providers. Our website provide readers with reviews from genuine customers who are more than willing to share their experiences with others.
There was a news report covered by HomeWarrantyWiz.com regarding recent developments with regard to fake Internet testimonials, company reviews, and ratings being detected and penalized by the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). HomeWarrantyReviews.com was involved with the research behind this article, particularly by sharing our experiences with home warranty companies that have attempted to use our ratings system to post fictitious consumer reviews.
Home warranty is a highly complex product and many consumers rely greatly on the information they find on the Internet in order to choose a home warranty company. Fake Internet reviews make finding accurate information about companies more challenging and can sometimes lead consumers to making misinformed decisions.
The recent FTC fine levied on an advertiser outside the home warranty industry for advertising that involved fake reviews posted online is a good sign for home warranty customers and for all consumers who use the Internet to shop and research products or services. Websites like ours which are actively monitoring the reviews posted on them are an additional resource aside from the FTC and state attorneys, working in the consumer’s corner.
There have been instances where we have blacklisted companies for repeatedly posting fake positive reviews. Some companies employed some sort of advanced techniques to make the review look legitimate. But we have built a sophisticated rating system over the years and will catch any attempt to manipulate the reviews. On top of that we have a team of experienced staff members who make sure the review passes through their litmus test. So, if you are company that relies on such tactics, take a note!
Ensuring that fake reviews and ratings are caught and removed and that the offending parties are warned is just one way in which reviews sites can police reviews and ratings and keep them as accurate as possible. Consumers also have a responsibility as well. Consumers must be diligent to make their reviews as factual as possible in order to make the fake reviews easier to spot. Detailed reviews stand apart from general ones and often fake reviews give only the most basic details, focusing more on glowing compliments about the service or product. Leaving emotion out of reviews is also important because the same companies that post fake reviews or attempt to deflect blame whenever customers post highly emotional testimonials. Ultimately the task of spotting fake reviews falls greatly upon the consumer’s shoulders but now that the FTC has thrown its hat into the ring things will be much more complicated and risky for companies that prefer false advertising over legitimate customer testimonials.
Ever wondered what is the difference between home warranty and homeowners insurance ? Are they not same? Let’s find answers for these questions.
While home warranty and home insurance products may come across as same, they are totally different. The coverage, cost, terms and conditions vary greatly. Home insurance is compulsory in some cases whereas home warranty is a recommended choice.
Home warranty offers protection for your major appliances, as well as plumbing and electrical units. It covers the cost of repairing or replacing major household appliances in case they break down, provided they meet the terms and conditions of the home service contract.
Home insurance covers your home in the event of damage due to natural calamity or man-made disasters and offers you liability protection from lawsuits in case of a third party involvement. If your neighbor came visiting you and accidentally fell and got injured and decides to sue you, then home insurance will take care of the claims. Home insurance is mandatory if you have a mortgage on your home.
Items covered by a home warranty may vary by company and plan, but typically includes the following items:
In case of an uncertain event like fire, theft, vandalism, or certain natural disasters, the cost of damages are covered. It also covers your personal items and gives you liability protection. Liability insurance will protect you from lawsuits in the event that someone is injured on your property. Home insurance will only insure your personal items in case they are stolen or ruined in a disaster. Repairs and replacements due to wear and tear are not covered.
The insurance policy varies depending on your state of residence and type of policy, but generally it will cover the following.
Home is the most prized and cherished possession any individual can have and nobody anticipates damages to this, therefore a home insurance provides you the following benefits when you cover your home.
A standard warranty runs $300 to $500 for a year of protection, which covers the cost of repairing or replacing a home’s major systems and appliances. Home sellers typically pick up the tab for the first year of coverage. Extended coverage plans for pools, spas and washers and dryers can be purchased at an extra cost.
Insurance cost varies from state to state and depends on the extent of coverage and the location of the property but a standard insurance can cost any homeowners insurance is between $300 and $1,000.
When you are planning to buy a home warranty, make sure that you do some research. Check our home warranty reviews section that provides pricing, comparison, quotes and consumer reviews of all major companies. When you are getting price quotes, inquire to look over a sample policy. Bear in mind to understand the entire policy, together with the fine print.
Another advantage of home warranty policy is that it is transferable. That means when you sell the house the warranty would be passed to the new owner. This has proved to be a well-liked feature amongst home buyers as homes having home warranties are selling at increased prices and in much shorter times. This in itself could make it sensible to get a home warranty policy.
When a covered appliance breaks down you need to contact your warranty company. A warranty company already has business ties with different service vendors. They will in turn contact a service repairman to come to your home and repair the appliance. The repairman will fix the item or recommend replacing it. The service repairman will bill your warranty company directly, but you have to pay a service charge when the repair person visits your home.
With any kind of insurance, it is always a good idea to shop around and evaluate benefits and prices as most insurance companies will provide you a policy discount. Ensure you read the policy before writing a check and ask any queries that you have in mind.
So, the conclusion is that home warranty and insurance are complementary to each other. You can choose to protect everything you own, provided you can afford to. Keep in mind that these insurance products do cost a bit more, but compared to the benefits they provide and the peace of mind you get, it seems like a very small amount. Insure your home as well as buy a home warranty all within your budget.
No human need is greater than a home to live in. While not all of us can afford to buy our dream houses, there are people who are not even sure buying is a good idea. The decision between buying and renting is one that has reduced many a strong willed man to tears.
As folks who work closely with homeowners, we have, over the years gathered knowledge about handling such dilemmas. So we thought we’d write an article to help those faced with the doubt that has plagued many of us – Should I buy a house or should I rent one?
We know that it is not a silly decision. So here are some points you should give thought to before you lean towards one decision.
This is something that should be considered before anything else. If you are in that city for an assignment or for a short duration, buying a house may not seem like a sensible option. If you plan to settle there permanently, looking into buying will be wise. Rent is often considered by many as dead money. That money never comes back or turns into an investment. So, give due thought to how long you plan to stay in an area and put that down on your list of things to consider.
Does your bank balance match that of Arab Royals’? You could buy a mansion in that case. Is your balance the typical American average? Well, you could maybe buy a house with some aid from loans then. But if you don’t have enough for a down payment, don’t even think about taking loans from several lenders to buy a house. Also, if you have no source of income, loans will never even be an option.
If you plan to buy a house, redecorate and sell (which is an expensive but rewarding business idea), you could probably look into some options for buying. If you are just looking for accommodation, renting an affordable place might seem sensible.
Believe us when we say this, some folks steer clear of the idea of renting because they are worried that the landlord might be a nightmare. However, don’t let this be the reason that deters from renting. Having a home of your own is indeed a satisfying feel but there is no reason why you should feel small because you stay in a rented house. For many, renting may make more sense financially than buying a home.
Buying a house does have formidable benefits. Here are some of them-
Like everything has two sides, owning a home too has a trying side. Let’s take a look at some common disadvantages of owning a house-
Well, since it’s better suited for the not so well off, financially, renting offers many advantages over buying. Let’s take a look at some of them –
Often called as a dead investment by many, renting comes with its set of heartbreaking disadvantages. Here are some of them-
We can’t decide for you, but we can urge you to strongly consider every aspect before you make a choice. Owning a home is indeed a wonderful experience that is unmatched. If you are already a homeowner and if you are thinking about buying an additional house, we would recommend that you look into easy home maintenance tips & cleaning hacks. You may also want to compare top home warranty companies to ensure that your budget stays protected.
An offshoot of Home Warranty, Structural Warranty is a legal agreement between the builder of the home and you – the owner. Structural Warranty functions basically in the case of new homes, wherein the builder assures that the home he has built will have no structural defects for a period of ten years after its construction. His claim is covered by the company which offers him warranty coverage for the building, at times additionally including workmanship and internal systems.
The system functions just like Insurance, but covers defects which may occur due to age and wear and tear, not natural disasters or unforeseen circumstances. Like the Home Warranty covers the items in a home – its appliances, wiring and plumbing systems, interiors etc. – Structural Warranty covers elements like the foundation, girders and beams, roofing, and flooring.
Before the purchase of a home, it is advised for either the new owner, seller or realtor to purchase Home Warranty, in order to establish a relationship of trust and confidence in both parties involved. Just as a Home Warranty leaves the new owner knowing that his home and all that is in it is secure for at least a year after its purchase, Structural Warranty establishes the same sense of security in the buyer of a new home straight from a builder.
It is rather simple – all structural defects are now to be fixed by the company that the Warranty has been purchased from or by the builder offering the warranty himself, and as long as the terms and conditions are met, neither the builder nor the new owner is liable.
We see before our eyes appliances, electrical systems and plumbing leaks occur every once in awhile – but most of the time structural damage is noticeable only after it is too late. Given that large parts of the US are known to have soil that expands with seasonal changes, statistics show that more than 25% of all buildings in the country experience some kind of structural damage during the first decade of their life, almost 10% of this being major and often irreversible.
It isn’t always about how reputable the builder is, in fact, the more reliable the builder the higher the chances are of them investing in warranty for the homes they have built. Years after a deal is signed, sealed and delivered, a matter like soil expansion that is out of the hands of both the parties can spring up, making Structural Warranty the only way to guard against massive expenditure out of your own pocket in the future. Studies show that the warranty is most often claimed 4 to 7 years after a home is built to completion.
The chances of an individual investing a sum as large as the cost of a home in anything else in his or her lifetime is very slim, making this purchase one that could develop complications if not done right. Builder’s offering Structural Warranty for the home they have built can not only assure the buyer of their expertise but also give them a legal document to go back to in case frivolous lawsuits or complaints are lodged. Like in the case of any two-way agreement, responsibilities, terms, and conditions are clearly outlined.
If a third party company is used to establish a warranty, then any complaints, disputes or discussions will be handled by them – until the point of reconciliation. This saves time and discomfort for both parties involved, especially the builder.
If you happen to be a builder with larger holdings or varied properties and houses, then the value of each building is sure to increase if Structural Warranty is added to the mix. Use it as a marketing strategy, one that is true to every word and will help you build lasting relationships with your clients.
Structural Warranty functions according to the guidelines of the Housing and Urban Development department of the US, which stipulates particular criteria within which a company must cover damages. Larger builders may choose to provide their own Structural Warranty schemes to the buyer, while builders without a department to handle such claims or smaller building agencies may choose to use third-party warranty companies. Even more so than Home Warranty claims and structures, Structural Warranty coverage and insurance backing vary drastically from builder to builder and company to company. If you happen to be a part of the decision making of who to choose, make sure you do your research and pick a coverage that is extensive and appropriate to your home.
If you go through a Structural Warranty contract or guide, you will notice one important point – the extremely specific and near legal language used to describe what that particular company or builder covers. Structural Warranty owes this specificity to regulations set by the Housing and Urban Development Department of the US, as well as to the builders’ need to protect themselves from futile claims and lawsuits.
Due to each Structural Warranty being unique (much like Home Warranties state-wise laws), we will get into what the warranty covers in general. Know that this isn’t ironclad, and you have to cross check the terms and conditions with your builder.
As a whole, third-party companies offer two kinds of warranty, one which accounts for any damage to the structure of the building from the moment the deal is closed between the builder and buyer. The second stipulates that the company will only begin to cover damage to the home 3 to 4 years post the sale, implying that any structural damage before then is up to the builder to fix.
Each company usually has a base plan and other additional perks that you can choose to opt for.
The basic coverage usually covers the following:
The last of these, load bearing partitions, are often accompanied by the additional coverage of non-load bearing partitions. These claims are almost purely cosmetic, and certain Structural Warranty companies do assure the fixing of these, keeping in mind the original material integrity of the home.
Integral to any warranty and insurance difference, Structural Warranty doesn’t cover any damage due to natural disaster, accidents or unforeseen circumstances; anything that is covered under insurance, basically.
Lastly, any structures added to the original home – an extension, outhouse and detached garage space for examples – would not be covered. If the need is felt, the builder could then purchase a separate Structural Home Improvement Warranty.
Individual state laws in the US tackle Structural Warranty in different ways, making the cost different in each state as well. On an average, if the basic warranty is purchased, then it shouldn’t cost more than 1% of the purchase cost of the home. In most states which are positioned in low-risk areas (minimal soil expansion, etc.), the price is only about half a percent of the home’s price, whereas in high-risk zones the price can go up to 1.5% to 2%.
When looked at it in terms of a median example, while Structural Warranty would cost anywhere between $500 and $1500 for ten years, the repair in case of structural damage could be between $50,000 and $100,000; Structural Warranty being about one percent of the estimated repair budget.
Georgia, the state that has everything from marshlands to beautiful beaches! This state has many things to be proud of and on top of the list is the fact that its capital city, Atlanta is the birthplace of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. For the 10 million Georgians out there, here’s an article that discusses some of the best home warranty companies in your state.
There are many home warranty companies out there, but some of them stand out from the rest due to an enhanced customer service and benefits that they provide. In this article, we are going to be talking about the top 5 home warranty companies listed on our website as of September 2015.
Reviews about this company suggest that they offer excellent services when you get their coverage and they will always find the most professional work for the best deals. That is what home warranty services are all about and these guys do it extremely well. They have been in the business or a very long time and they know exactly what people need and what kind of plans they should be providing to them.
The general feedback from customers is that AHS is a truly incredible service provider that goes the extra mile for their customers and that is the thing that really makes them the best at what they do in the eyes of hundreds of customers who have left their feedback. This is the kind of customer feedback that can be extremely good and it can make a company gain a great reputation fast.
They are offering some excellent home warranty plans that are going to be extremely beneficial to a lot of people. There are also many variations of each one of these plans and the price ranges are pretty good. There is a good chance that you will find one plan that will be ideal for your needs.
One of the best things they offer is the “Build Your Own Plan” option, which basically allows you to customize the coverage and this makes it even easier for you to get something that fits your budget and needs.
These guys really go the extra mile with their 24/7 customer service features and they will get people to repair an appliance of yours fast and efficiently. This is the one thing that makes the Home Service Club stand out from the competition in a very positive and appealing way. People like the idea of being able to ask for help at any hour of the day and even at the latest hours of the night. No matter how late or how early in the morning, they will have someone answering their phones and providing emergency services to you if necessary.
The client feedback for the company is predominantly excellent and there are many people who are always giving praise to their 24 hour availability. There is no doubt that these guys have earned a good reputation. There are a few disgruntled customers who report having to call third parties in regards to some issues, but 99% of their feedback is excellent.
They have a standard plan which is good enough for most people and they have a comprehensive plan that gives coverage to a larger number of states.
Home Warranty of America is very proud of the way they strive to simplify the lives of their customers. They provide help with very immediate responses and that is what makes them part of this top 5. This is the kind of customer service that needs to be provided to the customers if a company wants to be able to gain any kind of respect and positive reputation.
The Client feedback is for the most part very good and there are many customers who are very satisfied with the service. You will find that some people who own very old appliances will complain that they did not get assistance for those items, but most people seem very satisfied with the service. It’s remarkable to see a company with such a high rate of satisfaction from its customers.
Their customizable home warranty plans are very efficient and a lot of people have mentioned that they have a lot more options available since they started using this company. This is one of the reasons why it’s so highly recommended to anyone that wants to get proper home warranty plans for their appliances.
2-10 Home Buyers Warranty has a host of online and offline services for their customers. They have a large contractor network of over 10,000 licensed and experienced technicians. The company takes pride that they have served more than 2.5 million American homeowners so far. The official website of 2-10 Home Buyers Warranty provides customers with the provision to manage their account online and also place and track claims through the Internet.
This is a company that has been in the industry for close to 30 years. They’ve built a strong reputation for themselves and is therefore a popular choice among new and existing homeowners. Feedback from customers was mostly positive with some instances of claim denials being reported here and there. Overall, this is a company that holds an A+ rating with the BBB and is also a favorite among homeowners.
2-10 Home Buyers Warranty has different plans for homeowners, builders and real estate agents. For homeowners, there are two basic plans. A 10 year structural plan and a Systems and Appliances plan. For real estate agents, the company provides one year service agreements for townhouses, condos or multi-family homes. Builders can avail comprehensive protection plans that provide structural warranty and reduce the builder’s liabilities.
These guys are known for their quick and efficient customer services as well as their ability to provide the most professional repair services for all the covered appliances. This is a very solid company that has plenty of experience and it has become quite obvious to their customers that they are in this business to stay.
The client feedback is extremely good for this company and there is a very small number of people who have complained about the services not being what they expected, but this is inevitable in any large business. Even when everything gets done as it should, there will always be someone who is not going to be 100% satisfied with the work.
They have very good standard home warranty plans that cover a wide range of appliances and they also offer more flexible plans that allow their audience to fully customize their services. There is definitely nothing more important than having a certain degree of flexibility when you are working with any kind of flexibility plan and that is all that you really need to learn.
While this article discusses top five companies based on user reviews, we want our readers to understand that this is not some kind of authoritative list. Please do keep in mind that there is a large number of home warranty companies that are just as good and efficient as the ones we mentioned. We actively encourage you to go through our website and the user reviews on it before you make a choice. Plus we’ve got a free quote tool and listings of top home warranty companies serving in each state, which you are free to exploit.
If you think there’s another company that deserves to be on the list, do tell us about it and If you found this article useful, don’t forget to share it with your friends! Cheers!