How to Compare and Contrast Home Warranty Companies

When you compare “promise contracts”, such as home warranties, you must first comprehend exactly what is being assured. You can then evaluate attributes. Fraction of the research should also be aimed at comparing customer’s ratings of the companies that offer the warranties.

Comparing home warranty companies facilitates you to find the policy that suits your budget and needs. A home warranty is an individual policy you can procure to provide coverage for your home’s important appliances and systems. The precise prices and coverage obtainable to you varies by each home warranty company functioning in your area, so comparing the exact rates and services from each company is a significant step when picking a policy for your home.

When buying a home warranty, you are not only giving capital to the supplier, you are also giving your belief that they are going to cover you when you need it most. That’s why it’s so imperative to verify into a company’s history, see how they function and what they ought to offer, plus learn how they entertain their customers. It’s worth exploring before you purchase.

Six Steps to Choose a Home Appliance Warranty

  1. Determine the Coverage: Jot down the kind of coverage you need. Include exact items you want to be covered. Electrical systems and plumbing are typically covered under a basic home warranty, but you have to shell out for coverage for some other main appliances such as spa or garage door opener.
  2. Shortlist companies:  Visit Compare Home Warranties section to make a list of companies that you like. You can also check with your friends and family members or with a local real estate agent for a list of suggested home warranty providers.
  3. Research Providers and Pricing: Note down the pricing and ratings info for each company. You can also get price estimate of appliance warranty policy in the same section. Visit the official website of each warranty company if you desire.  Jot down the overall annual price for your preferred policy from each company.
  4. Talk to Companies: Contact home warranty company and inquire more about pricing information and a quote if the information isn’t available online or to verify data you received online. Ask how much fee they charge for a service call, and make a note of prices for each company next to policy price information you already listed. Ask about the typical wait times for a technician to know if there will be someone available promptly to help you when you need it. Also inquire if emergency and 24-hour service is available. Observe how they handle their customers.
  5. Read the Fine Print: Evaluate policy and service fee prices as well as service terms offered in the contract. Don’t assume anything. Pre-existing conditions are generally not covered. Few companies also require you to get maintenance & inspection done on HVAC units by a professional every year. But some  companies add lots of fine print clauses so as to exclude coverage on many things. This is the MOST important step among all.
  6. Customer Service: Finally, remember to check the customer service of the company you choose. When you call to inquire, observe how they treat you. Are they well mannered and kind or intolerant and impolite? Do you have to waste a lot of time on hold before getting through to speak to someone? Realize what their hours so you can make out whether there be someone accessible to help you when you call for it. Also, discover who the company employs for repairs. Ensure it’s a company individual you are happy with, and that they are near enough that they will be able to facilitate your repairs in a timely manner.

This video will help you compare home warranty companies.






air conditioning system

It’s actually not difficult to tell if your air conditioning system is in need of repairs, but sometimes inexpert and inexperienced homeowners might wonder whether the air conditioner is really not working or it is all in their head. Other homeowners might feel that though their air conditioning system is showing signs that it needs repairs, it is better to look after the problem before it gets worse or before their air conditioning system stops working completely.

When summer heat strikes, the best way to fight back is to turn on your air conditioner. Air conditioning keeps you cool over the summer, and with usual maintenance, your air conditioner ought to perform efficiently even during the hottest months. In case your air conditioner is not functioning as it should, it may be in need of expert attention. You should always call a qualified repair professional as soon as you decide that your air conditioner is not working properly. To know more about home appliances check out our Home Appliance Warranty section.

An Expert Diagnostic Air Conditioning Repair includes:air conditioning repair

  1. Visual inspection of all A/C components
  2. Full system performance test
  3. State of charge and system control tests
  4. Leak test, using an approved-leak detector
  5. Dye detection test (if a slow leak is difficult to detect)

Scheduling an air conditioning repair to ensure your AC system is working at maximum efficiency is always a good idea when facing the hot final weeks of summer.

6 Signs Your Air Conditioner Needs Repairs

Some of the signs are fairly obvious, while others are more subtle. Knowing the warning signs will help you search for professional service before the problems gets out of control.

1. No Cool Air

At some point, you may find that your air conditioning system simply isn’t doing its job. Even at full blast, the air coming from your vents just isn’t as cold as it used to be – or isn’t cold at all. This could be a sign that your system is need of serious repair. For instance, lack of cool air could mean that your system’s compressor has failed. It could also mean that you’re your system’s Freon levels are too low. When that time comes, you might have to to replace the unit.

2. Poor Air Flow

If you are noticing weak or little air flow through your AC vents, the unit’s compressor may be failing. In case your areas or rooms in your home are getting cold air while others are not, then the trouble might be with your duct work and it’s a sign that your AC system needs urgent repair.

Over time, debris can get stuck in your air conditioning vents. Not only this obstructs airflow, but it also presents a health risk to you and your family. Having your air conditioner’s ducts cleaned is a great way to restore airflow and ensure that your AC system is working well when you need it most.

3. Thermostat Problems

At times the trouble is not with the air conditioning unit, but with the thermostat itself. One way to tell if your thermostat is a problem is if one part of your house is very cold while another part remains at the same temperature.

4. Moisture Where It Shouldn’t Be

water leaking from the furnace section of your AC unit.Moisture or leakage around or near your system can be an indication of problems. When you see leaks from your air conditioning system, it can mainly because of two reasons.

In the most serious cases, the leak could be refrigerant. Refrigerant leaks can cause serious health risks to you and your family and need to be repaired at once. You must call an air conditioning repair expert right away.

Water pools adjacent to your air conditioner might show that the drain tube which disposes of the air conditioner condensation is either blocked or broken. This is not as serious an issue, but should be tackled quickly to avoid less important problems like mold growth.

5. Strange Sounds

Squealing, grating, grinding sounds from your air conditioner might be a sign that you need a replacement unit. These noises imply that something is wrong inside the unit. Failure to service the unit could result in a pricey breakdown.

A squealing noise means that the belt has slipped out of place. It may also indicate that a metal component in your air conditioner requires more lubrication. A grinding sound may mean that your motor’s bearings are broken.

6. Strange Odors

Pungent or foul smells from your air conditioning vents normally means that your conditioner’s wire insulation has burned out. Musty smells generally indicates that there is mold inside your unit or ductwork which must be taken care of without delay.

In order to keep away from these issues, it is important to maintain your air conditioning system habitually. It is a costly appliance and must be cared for to add to its lifespan and lessen the need for pricey repairs.

Even if your unit doesn’t need replacement, getting it repaired or serviced can boost up its efficiency and save you money.

Most repairs on air conditioners are quite simple, but homeowners frequently avoid calling a technician as they fear a large bill. In case your AC unit is new, you may find that the repair is covered under a manufacturer’s warranty. Even if it is not, it is good to fix a small problem quickly than to delay and let it grow into a larger problem.




Home protection plans, commonly known as a Home Warranty or appliance protection plan is a service contract that agrees to offer discounted repairs and replacements of your household appliances. It means that if any of your covered appliances breaks, the home warranty company shall provide you with a qualified technician who will repair your device and cover the cost of repair as well.

Home Protection Plans

Ideally, appliance protection plans are best suited for people who have appliances that are fairly used and above 4 years in age, as this is the time where most of the functional issues arise. It is highly recommended that you purchase a home service contract if any of the following are or all are true.

  • Your appliances are over 4 years
  • You don’t have a trusted service vendor
  • You don’t have time for DIY repairs
  • You are a first time homeowner
  • You can’t afford frequent repairs and replacements

If you were to ask if these plans are worth the money, then we would have to admit that there is no straightforward answer to that. There are quite a lot of happy customers out there who swear that purchasing home warranty was the best decision they ever made and yet there are people who think otherwise. It is up to you to decide if you will benefit from a home protection plan.  If you are in need of more guidance, please read the Home warranty buyer’s guide.

This is how a home warranty works

You purchase the appliance protection plan from a home warranty company for a certain amount of coverage. This coverage could be vast and cover almost all the outside and inside appliances or it could be the basic version. If a device covered by the plan fails to operate properly, you simply place a call to your home service contract provider. They will then call up a service vendor with who they have contracted and tell them about your issue. Service vendor then collects your contact information and contacts you to fix an appointment.

He/she then comes to your home to take a look at the damaged gadget. If the repairs needed are minor, they will oftentimes be fixed on the spot. Major repairs and part replacements need approval from the home warranty company. If parts are to be replaced, the home warranty company shall procure them for you and get the appliance fixed. Sometimes, if the technician determines that the device can’t be repaired, depending on your coverage, the home warranty company may replace your device.

Hence, one can say that the benefits of Home warranty are the following:

  • Discounted repairs and replacements of household appliances
  • Qualified and experienced technicians at your doorstep
  • Protection of your budget against expensive repairs
  • Peace of mind
  • Covers all major appliances and systems.
  • Additional coverage can always be purchased
  • Affordable
  • Covers damages resulting from wear and tear

As mentioned before, there still exists a school of thought that home warranty plans are not worth the money. Hence, we must discuss the drawbacks of these plans.

  • Not free of cost. In addition to the annual premium that ranges anywhere between $250 to $1000, you will have to pay a service call fee each time you raise an issue. The amount is typically nominal, around $50
  • Home warranty companies will almost always try to repair and not replace the damaged gadget.
  • Some may feel that there is no flexibility. You usually cannot select a service vendor of your choice and sometimes conflicts may arise on the diagnosis provided by the vendor.
  • Claims can be denied on vague grounds or by stating fine print from the contract.
  • Pre-existing conditions quite often are not covered

Because of these reasons, we suggest that folks who fall under the following categories, don’t purchase a home warranty. This is only a suggestion, if you believe that you shall benefit from a home warranty plan, you should go ahead with it.

  • Your appliances are fairly new and are still covered by the manufacturer’s warranty.
  • You have a trusted repair vendor.
  • You have time and skill for DIY repairs
  • You have money for frequent repairs

You can consider an extended warranty to protect your new devices. You can read about the differences between home warranty and extended warranty to clear your doubts.

If your devices are new, chances are low that they may need repairs often. Also if they are still covered by the manufacturer’s warranty, any damage will be covered by them, provided it is not an excluded case. And all of this is unnecessary if you are a repair vendor yourself!

The bottom-line

Home warranties can be a great way to protect your budget and your appliances. As mentioned before, if you fall into the former category where your devices are old and so on, we highly recommend that you purchase a home warranty. Otherwise, you can do without one.

A lot of unpleasant instances occur due to lack of understanding of the working of the plan. Hence, we urge you to read the policy booklet and the offer document carefully before you make a commitment. These documents are highly significant and have to be studied and preserved carefully.  If you are certain that you want to purchase appliance warranty, please go through our reviews section to choose the best provider out there. Good luck!




In a quite short period of time, home protection plan have grown considerably in recognition. Today, the plans are almost standard in every city real estate transactions, where 8 of every 10 homes sales are covered. Homeownership can be one of life’s many pleasures, but it’s not always cheap. Most likely the last thing a homebuyer wants to do after closing on their new home is to shell out even more money on appliances or systems that unpredictably break or malfunction. It’s a usual part of being a homeowner, though, and procuring a home warranty protection plan is one way you can attain some peace of mind.

When your appliance breaks down, don’t worry about whom to call to fix it, or what it will cost. There are various options by which you can protect your budget from pricey emergency repairs.

  1. Home Warranties
  2. Extended warranties on expensive appliances
  3. Appliance Service Contracts
  4. Service contract for specific items such as HVAC
  5. Hire a pro when something breaks down

Want to know how home warranty works? Watch this video –

Home Warranties

Home Protection Plan

Home warranty plans, also called home protection plans, are basically service contracts or insurance policies that cover major appliances and systems of a home. It’s a good idea if you are a first time home buyer without any understanding in maintaining a home or property. Homeowners insurance does not cover breakdown of a home’s major systems or appliances, but a home warranty protection plan can help with repair expenses such as refrigerator that stops running, or your air conditioning system breaks down in the middle of the night.

When a breakdown happens that involves a system covered by the home warranty plan, the homeowner calls the insurance firm and desires a service call. The cost of the service call, which ranges from $35 to $95 per visit based on your location, is salaried by the owner. The warranty company allots the call to an approved contractor, and the home protection company shells out for the system repair or replacement.

What parts of a home are covered by a Home Warranty?

Home warranties naturally cover the mechanical systems of a home such as heating, plumbing, water heater and most built-in appliances. Structural components and pre-existing conditions are usually are not covered. For instance, if the water heater hasn’t worked properly for some time, it possibly that it won’t be covered in the buyer’s home warranty plan. Other items which are typically not covered include faucet repairs, sprinklers and permit fees. Some home warranty cover roof repairs and garage door openers with certain limits.

Another common problem with home warranties is that you will not be able to decide the repair provider that will care of your problem while the warranty is in effect. Normally, if a covered item breaks down, you will put notify your home warranty company, which will select a service provider with which it has an agreement.

Additional coverage is accessible under most home warranties at an extra charge for a spa, pool, air conditioning and freestanding appliances, such as washer, refrigerator and dryer.

Coverage usually runs for a year, but it may be extended at the owner’s choice for a renewal fee. Some people keep their home warranty policy in position for years and years. If the home protection plan is ordered at the time a home is bought, inspections are normally not required.

If you don’t want to have to be anxious about repairs in your first year of home ownership, a home warranty may be a good idea. However, it is imperative to weigh up your warranty, to ensure that you will be properly covered.

Know the basics of home warranty.

Extended Warranties Protect Appliances from Expensive Breakdowns

Extended warranties, by providing protection for pricey purchases and increasing the span of a product’s original warranty, have become the standard for many retailers. These warranties often appeal to economical consumers, for whom purchasing big-ticket items like appliances and electronics can be a challenging decision.

An extended warranty or service contract is like an insurance policy – your savings buys off only when the most evil happens. But do you actually want one? These days, almost all the brand – name appliances are sturdily – built and generally last their usual life span with few or no repairs, rendering extended warranties pointless. In case you do choose to get one, ensure that you do your homework.

Buying Extended Warranties on Appliances

Are Extended Warranties For Expensive Appliances Worth It?

There might be instances where an extended warranty is affordably priced and makes up for a limited warranty that covers little ground and has short period of time, and thus, is worth it. But too often, they are a waste of money. Before you purchase an extended warranty, ask yourself the following questions:

  • What are the odds that this appliance will break down in X amount of years,
  • What will the price of a replacement or repairs to this appliance be in X amount of years?

You frequently forget that while your product may certainly break down later on, the price of the product will also depreciate later on. Only when the forecasted cost of replacement or repairs become considerably greater than the present cost of the extended warranty, should one consider buying the extended warranty. And still, a warranty must only be thought out if there is also a significant chance that the appliance will stop working in the first place!

Certainly, warranties are significant and you must always ensure that when you buy pricey appliances – like clothes dryer for example – that it has a warranty to follow with it. But if a salesperson is attempting to get you to buy an additional extended warranty, be doubtful. Think about sales and advertising. There is always an income motive and retailers and merchandisers can regularly make money off consumers when they purchase extended warranties than when they buy replacement products or pay for repairs! This is why third party companies and retail stores provide extended warranties, not the manufacturers.

Think about sales and advertising. There is always a profit motive and retailers and merchandisers can often make more money off of consumers when they buy extended warranties than when they buy replacement products or pay for repairs! This is why retail stores and third-party companies offer extended warranties, not the manufacturers themselves.

The moral of the story is that you must do a little math and significant thinking prior to buying an extended warranty. Possibly it will be a wise purchase, and may be the money will be better used up toward other services or products.

 

Appliance Service Contracts

Appliance Repair Professional

Don’t lose your cool over unforeseen home repairs; call the experts for a home service contract. One such company that provides Service Contract is Service America. Never again will you have to worry yourself with the hassle and high cost of unforeseen repairs.

Service America is protecting its customers from unpredicted air conditioning, appliance and plumbing repairs for over 38 years saving them a ton of money, time and unnecessary frustration. When something breaks down at home, it becomes necessary for you to rush and find the right technician to fix the problem. Many times it’s an urgent situation and you don’t have the comfort of shopping around for the best price. But you can avoid these types of stressful circumstances, save money and experience peace of mind at the same time by buying a Service Contract.

A Service America Service Contract covers all these appliances and services for just one low yearly cost.

Quoting and buying a service contract takes a few minutes but expectantly you will find it effortless. In order to obtain the best possible coverage you need to give basic information about your home.

 

Service Contract for Specific Items such as HVAC

HVAC-Fort-Lauderdale

In the heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) industry, equipment servicing is generally headed by the issuance of HVAC service contracts. The key purpose of this is to describe the terms of service as well as the cost, the length of service and what requires to be done, and each package of contracts is exclusive to each type of service. These service contracts incorporate full-coverage, full-labor, preventative-maintenance, inspection contracts, and end-use contracts.

All of these HVAC service contracts cover the tasks of each party, material cost, wages and how to decide arguments with a complete document. The equipment, procedures, tasks, unique descriptions and reports on the precise work to be done ought to be covered as well. Every contract also sketches processes and details the responsibilities of the contractor and owner. Regardless of which contract is signed, there can be several contracts put into practice for the same parties at any given time.

 

 

Hire a Pro When Something Breaks Down

Appliances are a vital component of a well running home, as they are utilized every day. When they stop working, an appliance repair professional is able to restore the item to full working order. Along with repairs, professionals will regularly service your appliances to make sure that they run as safely and efficiently as possible.

Appliance repair professionals can render the following services amongst others:

  • Parts and labor warranty
  • Supply and installation
  • Emergency services
  • Service or repair several brands of appliances
  • Safety checks

While hiring your appliance repair professional, make sure that you get a quote on the work that needs to be performed. Ensure that the quote incorporates the call out fee and the cost of any parts that must be replaced. The professional must also be ready to give assurance of their work for a certain period of time. It’s good idea to investigate several repair pros in your area and pick the one that offers experienced technicians, reasonable prices, and good customer service. Always make sure that the professional is insured and licensed.




Green Landscaping is a new trend of sorts and it causes the least harm to our nature so I suggest that you read on. You might already know that Landscaping is essentially the practice of improving the aesthetic appearance of a confined or set area by making use of colors, contours, trees, or plants, you name it. Altering the visible features of an area immensely influences the emotions of the people who constantly occupy that area.

Green landscaping

Over the years, Landscaping has become more than a hobby to many. With the rising amount of pollution and falling levels of energy resources, you may want to consider an alternate way of Landscaping. Why not adopt a method that will not only make your yard stunningly beautiful, but will also help you save the environment and conserve energy too?

That’s what Green Landscaping is all about. Green landscaping, also called as sustainable or eco-landscaping makes use of methods that do not harm the environment in any way. It uses less water, protects the natural vegetation by making use of native or naturalized species, manages the waste disposal efficiently and also optimizes energy usage. And guess what? The costs are much lower too! On the whole it offers healthier and inspirational spaces to people.

People who take up Green Landscaping are often called Green Landscapers, and trust me when I say this, they are not lazy, jobless people who took to Green Landscaping just to kill time. They are highly motivated and they don’t take environmental issues lightly. Green Landscapers treat their designs the way other people would treat Home Insurance, everything must be covered. Based on reading so far, if you genuinely want to start one on your own, do read the rest of the article.

Planning Green Landscape

1. Assess your property

Begin by assessing the site where you plan to start your green landscaping activity. Pay attention to the following:

  • Type of soil– Your soil could be acidic or alkaline. In certain cases soil may contain small amounts of lead, this could be dangerous if your little ones play in it. It is suggested that you get your soil checked. You can call the following number for details – National Lead Information Center at 1-800-424-LEAD
  • Location– Inspect the other details of your site. Determine the amount of sunlight received, mark areas where underground utilities and overhead power supplies are present. Note the shape and size of the property and try to convert that into a map on paper.

2. Research and Plan

  • Brainstorm– Decide what you want your yard to be. It could be a play area, outdoor dining or maybe a bubble to save you from the rest of the world. It’s your choice and it could be anything. However if you plan to start anything that primarily involves plants and vegetation, you should make sure that your site receives ample sunlight. You can also mark the areas that do receive sunlight and use them exclusively for vegetation.
  • Research– If you already have some vegetation there, try to do some research to identify what species they are. It is also suggested that you identify what plants grow in your soil. If you wish to attract a special kind of wildlife, study their behavior and decide what should be put up so that they would flock into your garden.
  • Plan– Once you have gathered all the information, draw up a map and start working on it by breaking it down into manageable parts.

Creating a Green Landscape

The most basic form of Green Landscaping requires minimum effort. All you have to do is reduce the amount of solid waste and conserve water. Eg, you could simply create a compost pile instead of bagging your twigs and leaves.

Don’t see what’s the fun in the idea you just read above? Fair enough, here are some elaborate methods

  • Go green: Since Green Landscaping essentially involves plants ( thats’ a no brainer), make sure you have plenty of them. If there isn’t enough native vegetation, you could plant some after determining the behavior of your soil.
  • Restore drainage conditions: All plants require moisture to thrive well. However excess water may cause them to rot. So it is important that water does not collect at the base of your plants. If you want to incorporate a method that saves water you could try to water your lawn less during summer. You see, grass are programmed in a way that allows them a certain period of dormancy during the summer heat.
  • Promoting soil chemistry and biota: Plants are the keystone species in any garden. What you plant should not contradict the natural ecological profile. If you have your keystone species in place, everything will turn out right.
  • Say no to chemicals: Reduce or better totally avoid the use of chemical fertilizers in your garden. These chemicals tend to pollute the soil, water and air around you. You can always use compost instead. However if you are adamant that you need fertilizers, make sure you use them during fall and spring only. That’s the time it is most beneficial to plants.
  • Reduce emissions: I’ve heard the EPA say that lawn mowers, snow blowers, leaf vacuums and chainsaws are major contributors to the rising pollution. Try to use them as little as possible. You can try shifting to electrically powered tools. This will only reduce pollution as electrical tools also produce emissions. The best way out of this is to use manual tools. It will make sure that no emissions are involved and will also give you some amount of physical exercise. You can cut your gym bills by doing this one.
  • Waste not, Want not: As mentioned before never dispose off your solid plant wastes. They can be the best of fertilizers once they decay. Also avoid throwing around clipped grass and leaves, they can be major sources of water pollution. Recycle your garden pots and flats whenever you can. Try to share large tools with your neighbors. Most importantly save and conserve as much water as you can. Place rain barrels in your yard if you live in a region that receives ample rainfall.

The Bottom-line

 If  I were to write down all the details about green landscaping, I would easily use up an entire hard-disk (of one TB). It is not an easy task, but once you can get into the flow of it, it will be easy and highly rewarding. With the current rate of  fuel consumption, our environment is dying out fast. Nobody wishes to leave behind rotten goods for their children. Do what you can to save nature. Let’s adopt Green Landscaping and make this world a better place to live in.

 




What’s it like right now out there for home sellers?  Well, for one thing, despite the wild gyrations of the stock market over the last several months, houses are still being sold.  Not only are houses selling but many regions are showing signs of solid home value increases as inventory hits a bottleneck.  This is the good news.  The not-so-good news is that parts of the western U.S. are not enjoying the rising sales prices.  As homes in those parts of the country stay on the market longer, sellers find themselves in competition with other home sellers.  And that leads to knocking prices down or making other costly concessions to close a sale.  If that sounds like your situation then what can you do?  What can any seller do when a house doesn’t sell as quickly as desired?  The answer to that question is many things.  But one thing in particular is relatively inexpensive and easy to accomplish.  That one thing is buying a home warranty.

Home Warranty

Home warranties have not exactly been praised in recent years, so it might seem unlikely that anybody will see these contracts as a big plus.  But that’s a widely adopted misconception and one that deserves some closer inspection.

I asked the founder of the home warranty industry, American Home Shield, to help me understand why their customers involved in real estate sales are choosing to cover their listing periods and buyers’ first years of ownership with a seller provided home service contracts.

Lisa Rice, National Vice President, Real Estate Sales at American Home Shield answered the call for information with some details that real estate professionals and home sellers may want to consider when deciding whether or not to buy a home service contract.

What types of home warranties are available to home sellers right now?

American Home Shield offers different levels of coverage for homeowners in any number of situations. Sellers can offer any of our AHS packages to the buyer at closing – Shield Essential, Shield Plus or Shield Complete.  Shield Essential, for instance, provides comprehensive coverage to a seller on their “essential” systems that could fail during the listing period.  Further, a seller’s portion of coverage is paid at “closing” – so there is no up-front out-of-pocket expense to the seller.

What is the average cost of these contracts?

Our prices vary based on the part of the country you are in, but in some parts of the country, you can get our basic Shield Essential plan for less than $2 a day. The Shield Essential plans cover major appliances and home system components.

Do these contracts typically help homes to sell faster?  If so then can you cite any statistics?

According to a 2013 real estate study conducted by NRT, we found that homes with an AHS Home Protection Plan sold an average of about 11 days faster and about $2,300 more than those without a home warranty — that’s over three times the average price of the plan itself.  Also, in many states where multiple offer situations are a reality, buyers might choose to provide sellers coverage during the contract escrow period to make their purchase offer more attractive. This is a tremendous benefit for the seller.

Can you say what percentage of these contracts result in paid claims?

An American Home Shield customer uses their plan an average of two times per year. We accept and pay more service requests than any other home warranty company in the nation. In the past three years, we have serviced about 93 percent of claims. That’s added up to $1.7 billion over the last 5 years and $3 billion in the last ten years.

Lisa’s feedback helped greatly.  Even as someone working on the marketing side of the home service contract industry I still need to understand why the industry keeps growing its customer base, despite so many consumer advocates and other critics lambasting home warranties as a waste of cash.  But there were still questions that I have seen and heard from homeowners not familiar with the home warranty.  And a few of those are important to air out, in my opinion.

Isn’t home warranty something that overlaps with homeowner’s insurance?

Absolutely not.  But this is still a good point to address.  It’s a common misconception among a large percentage of homeowners in the U.S.  Truth is, your homeowner’s insurance mostly covers the unforeseeable things that happen TO your house.  Home warranty covers the things that happen in your house that is expected, even guaranteed to eventually occur.  Your insurance is a wager of sorts between you and the company issuing the coverage, their bet being that you’ll pay a lot more in than you ever get out in claims.  Home warranty pays for things that are much, much more likely to happen to almost any coverage purchaser, things like dishwashers wearing out and refrigerators needing replacement.  This is where the common complaints about home warranty are most easily linked to the nature of the service promised to customers.  Homeowner’s insurance is typically far more expensive to maintain per year than a home warranty would be for the same house.  Why?  Well, the main reason seems to be the price that customers are willing to pay.  People just don’t want to spend as much on home warranties, it would seem, as they do their insurance.  But by looking for the absolute cheapest home warranty you are practically inviting problems down the road.  Like insurance, the home warranty can’t operate profitably for the company unless more money comes in premiums than goes out in claims.  Homeowners would do well to keep in mind both the differences between homeowner’s insurance and home warranty and the dynamic at work inside the companies.  Sometimes you really do get what you pay for!

How can I find the top home warranty companies?

This one is easy.  HomeWarrantyReviews.com is the best place to narrow down the options that a homeowner has for home warranty coverage, no question about it.  You won’t find a website that has been around longer than this one, when it comes to providing unbiased consumer feedback about home warranty companies.

How do I know if I’m the right customer for a home warranty?

This is the best and first question a homeowner can ask, in my opinion, when considering a home warranty.

Do you need one?  Do you not need one?  Is it better to put money in savings or have a credit card with a good sized credit line on standby for emergencies?  Is it better to buy the home warranty?

Answering these questions can be as arbitrary as a coin toss for some people, simply due to all the uncertainty involved.  Though a newer appliance is less likely to break and may be covered under a manufacturer’s warranty, there is also the matter of how time consuming finding a qualified, reputable contractor can be.  And if you’re an investor with multiple rental properties, that time you spend calling around to find a good contractor may be greatly multiplied.

To help you with this decision, I would suggest you read this article here on HomeWarrantyReviews.com, with helpful tips about deciding whether a home warranty is something you need or not.

Author Bio

Kevin Wallach writes about the home service contract industry and works in a marketing capacity within the home warranty industry.  He has followed the industry for five years and has worked just as long to help bring customers and companies together through Internet marketing.  He also is the administrator of the Home Warranty and Service Contract industry group on Linkedin.

 




Winter Home Protection TipsThe leaves are starting to turn and the chill is in the air, and now is the time for homeowners to prepare their residence for winter. With heating rates expected to rise this year, winterizing your home could save money on lower heating bills and remove expensive damage to the house from the elements.

The most crucial things to check are testing for leaks around the house and to make sure that heating is efficient. Experts suggest scrutinizing your home and making necessary repairs now prior to that first snowstorm.

During previous year, more than one third of home insurance claims were weather related. Many of those claims have been prevented if the homeowner had some time to prepare their home for the winter months. Here are some simple and helpful tips to get your house ready for the winter so that you can be comfortable, warm, and safe should bad weather hit.

1.Seal the Envelop of your Home

Seal Your Home's EnvelopeNow it is the time to look for cracks and places that need caulking or sealing. It will help you out save money in the summer and winter by reducing air infiltration.

Try to find cracks around windows, faucets, doors, dryer vents, air conditioning vents and any other place that something can come through the wall. Most cracks can be sealed with superior quality exterior caulk – it’s reasonable and comes in many colors to match the exterior. In case you do not find areas with big cracks, you may have to use expandable foam.

It is suggested patching any areas with cracked paint as exposed wood has no hurdle against moisture, which can cause more grave problems. To get warranty for all these appliances check out our Home Warranty Reviews guide.

2.Make sure Doors and Windows are Sealed Properly

Sealing DoorAs half of your energy costs go to heating and cooling your home, you need to make sure that windows and doors are tightly sealed. Confirm that weather stripping is installed and that caulking around windows is not missing or cracked. Make sure that weatherstripping is set up and that caulking around is not missing or cracked. This is also the time to take away screens and put in storm windows.

If by now you have weatherstripping, look whether the foam’s is in good form. If it’s not then take off a small strip and then take it with you to the store so as to match it with new weather stripping as that will give you the best seal.

3.Protect from Critters

While you are walking around, try to find access points for small animals and insects. Closing any holes can put off squirrels and other animals from living in your warm attic all through the cold winter months and causing long-term troubles.

4.Inspect Gutters and Downspouts

Winter Home Protection TipsOnce the leaves have fallen, clean up the gutters and check for any needed repairs. See where the downspout directs the water and ensure water doesn’t puddle and stay near your foundation. Gutters that don’t handle run-off usually create ice dams. Take care of the melting ice as it can pool and cause roof rot.

5.Protect Wood Floors

You mainly want to protect your hardwood floors from winter walking wear and tear as you are most likely to be indoors in winter. Also, with wet weather mud comes, so reduce the amount of dirt and mud as this will scratch up the wood. Try keeping floor mats by the front and back doors and even an outdoor mat for pre-wiping your shoes. Also, for wood floor protection, it is important to not let water just sit on your wood flooring as it will mold, warp and damage the floor.

6.Trim Tree Limbs

Cutting Tree Limbs

Heading into the colder months is the best time to cut down any tree limbs that are touching or are near the roof. These could damage the shingles (shingles guard the roof from water and moisture and prevent roof rot and leaks). Besides, also remove any weakened or diseased trees or else they could fall from bad weather storms.

7.Take care of Faucets and Pipes

You don’t have to do this if you have frost-proof faucets. Wrap any available pipes in your basement or attic with foam pipe wraps. This help prevent any freeze damaged and burst pipes and help you save funds since it will take the hot water for use.

8.Insulate your Attic

Insulate Your Attic

Even though most houses have less than 6 inches of insulation, you need no less than 12 inches. If you can roll insulation, you can get your money back in energy savings within 6 months. Even adding one or two rolls at a time will still have an advantage. When rolling insulation, employing unfaced insulation without paper rather than faced insulation prevents trapping moisture in the insulation down the road.

Lastly, plan an appointment with your heating company. It is good to get an annual tune-up, you need to be sure your homes furnace or boilers are working well. This helps your home be energy efficient and aids prevent carbon monoxide leaking into the air, which can become a toxic gas. This is something that needs to get done in every home; we tend to do ours in mid fall just to ensure with the holiday crazy that we don’t fail to remember.

If you have not planned yours yet, call a professional now!

So there you have it, there are many home improvements from light fixtures to leaky faucets bookcase building and deck finishing.

Paying attention to these important home improvement projects before winter will keep your family safe and your heating expenses down.

==> Click here to get  Price Estimate for Home Warranty.




Building insurance is a type of insurance most people don’t know enough about. This is the cover that provides for dealing with storm damage, accidents, malicious damage and a range of other things most people understandably prefer not to think about at all if they can help it. Building insurance is a type of “catchall” insurance, which covers damage to buildings which can run into very heavy costs for owners. So how do i insure a building? Read this article to get clear insight about building insurance.

Insure a Building

Buildings and risk management

This is a very versatile type of insurance, and it needs to be. Building damage can include some extremely difficult, capital-intensive issues that owners have to deal with quite regularly. It’s a form of investment protection, very common in commercial properties, to deal with the risks of businesses. If you own several million dollars worth of building, you need to know you’re properly covered.

The fact is that any type of building ownership includes a lot of basic risk management by definition. If you own rental properties, you’ll be well aware of the possibilities of damage from various sources, and the fact that premises really need to be maintained. Damage has to be fixed, and if that damage isn’t adequately covered, it’s money out of pocket upfront, a loss in any terms unless you have a very good homeowners insurance policy.

That’s not good business practice, and it’s exactly what building insurance is designed to deal with. For homeowners, the issues may be different, but the principle is the same. If you’re paying off a mortgage, and the budget is looking a bit fragile, the last thing you need is building damage running into thousands or tens of thousands of dollars. That whole scenario has to be covered, and covered properly.

Building insurance basics

The best approach to building insurance is to take a long hard look at your needs and then start shopping around for insurance that covers your needs. You’ll probably be surprised to hear that online buildings insurance is quite easy to get, complete with upfront quotes and adjustable cover, which can be tailored to your needs. This is the new paperless insurance, bureaucracy-free to the extent that it’s possible to be, and it’s getting a lot of market share because it’s highly efficient for both private and business purposes.

The shopping around needs to include:

  • Clear understanding of policy values. This is critical. Ask questions, and you’ll get straight answers. The insurers need informed customers, particularly about cover values. Sales and quality are now inseparable in this highly competitive industry, so expect good offers and good information.
  • Clear policy operation values: How a policy is operated, including outlay on premiums and policy variations is often critical, particularly to people having property portfolios to manage. Efficiency pays off in time and value, so go for the best you can get in these areas.
  • No “grey areas”. Best practice in insurance includes Product Disclosure Statements, and these statements are comprehensive. Read them.

Buildings insurance is easy to get and easy to manage. Stay in front of the issues, and your cover will do the rest.




Claim denial is an incident in which a home warranty company rejects a customer’s request for repair service. Sometimes customer claims are legit and fully entitled to receive services stated as per the contract. Claim denials are considered to be a major reason behind spats between service contract companies and the customer.

While some claims are denied for genuine reasons, some customers argue that companies deny claims on vague grounds often stating fine print from the contract. Yet, there are also cases where the companies were falsely accused of unfair claim denial solely because the customer failed to understand the terms mentioned in the home service contract.

What we need to understand is that not all companies deny claims unfairly because doing so will severely damage their reputation. So unless there is a valid reason, reputable companies will not deny a customer’s claims randomly.

Let’s take a look at some common reasons for claim denials

1. Appliance is not covered

This is often the most common reason for denying a claim. Most service contracts only cover a fixed set of appliances and not everything in your house. If your home service contract provider gives you this reason, go check your contract and make sure that the appliance is indeed not covered. In case you find that it is a covered item, place further calls to the company and let them know that the as per the contract, the item is covered.

Home Warranty Claim Denials2. Appliance is not maintained properly

No home service contract covers an appliance that has become damaged due to lack of maintenance. Regular wear and tear is not caused due to insufficient maintenance. It is the result of prolonged, proper usage. It is the homeowner’s duty to carry out regular maintenance routines, especially for HVAC appliances. However, if you believe that the damage is not caused due to insufficient maintenance, tell the company that you need to get a second opinion from a different contractor.

3. The damage is pre-existing

Home service contract providers often tell the customer that the damage was one that existed even before the contract was signed and hence it will not be covered. There’s hardly anything you can do about such a denial. However, you can avoid chances for such disputes by making sure that you get a home inspection done prior to signing the contract. That way the home inspector’s report will clearly state about what appliance has what damage. If it is not in the report and if the item is covered, you may be entitled to a repair service.

4. Unusual wear and tear

Wear and tear due to regular usage and wear and tear due to rough handling and careless usage can be distinguished quite easily. If the damage was caused due to the latter kind of wear and tear, your claim stands a chance to be denied. In this scenario too, you can ask for a another contractor to get a second opinion if you disagree on the diagnosis.

5. Code Violations and improper installation

If the appliance was not properly installed and if it violates the codes laid down for safe use and installation, chances are high that your claim may be denied.

What should a customer do when claims are denied?

It goes without saying that the policy booklet, the contract and the inspection report, if any, must be preserved carefully. The moment you realise that your claim has been denied, go through your contract and policy document to make sure that the claim is denied purely based on the terms in the contract. If you have a home inspection report go through that too. If you feel that your claim has been unjustly denied, you can call the home service contract company again and press the issue.

You can also visit review websites and post a review about your experience. HomeWarrantyReviews.com has a feature called the Complaint Resolution Program (CRP) which is a platform for companies and their customers to resolve their issues. The customer merely needs to report his negative experience with HomeWarrantyReviews.com, following this, he will be asked if wants to take part is CRP. If he/she chooses to participate in it, the company will be notified about his/her grievance and will be given 30 days to respond/ sort it out. If the company fails to respond or resolve the issue, the customer’s negative review becomes public. Some review websites allows their users to resolve the issues with the contract provider by communicating with them through a specific platform. The advantage of this system is that if the home service provider fails to resolve the issue for the customer or fail to respond within a time frame, the review becomes public, thereby affecting the rating and reputation of the company. Most companies do not want that.

Whatever the reason could be, we request customers to make things clear before they react to a claim denial. It could be that the company is not at fault here and because of a misunderstanding, their name gets tarnished. Most of the unpleasant scenarios can be avoided if the company you pick is reputable. Hence we cannot stress enough on the importance of picking the right company, a good home service contract provider will always put the interests of the customer first. Remember, good communication is often the solution to the biggest of problems.




United Services Automobile Association (USAA) began in 1922 with 25 Army officers who offered to cover each other’s vehicles when no one else would. Today, their tiny organization has grown into a respected institution offering a full range of financial products to millions of members.

USAAUSAA is committed to the financial well being of members of the military and their families for generations to come. That’s why it offers a variety of financial products and excellent services to assist its members attain their financial goals and plan for the future.

Home Warranties USAA

A few years ago USAA also offered home warranty backed by reputable partners but currently they don’t seem to offer it anymore.

When you procure a home, there is a very good chance that you will be offered a home warranty that aids cover the cost of repairs for a period of time after you have purchased it.

A home warranty is essentially an insurance policy that insures the electrical, plumbing and mechanical systems of a house. A home warranty offers the same comfort as any insurance against unforeseeable events.

Here’s what you need to keep in mind to make the most of the safety it provides.

New Home Warranties

If you are purchasing a newly built home, your builder will probably offer a warranty covering defects in workmanship and materials. The period of this coverage differs, but it’s generally not less than a year.

To stay away from unpleasant surprises, read your entire warranty booklet before closing on the contract. Ensure you understand the various exclusions and conditions. New home warranties usually don’t cover electronics, appliances and similar fixtures set up in the home, as those products are generally covered by manufacturer’s warranties. Confirm that you obtain the home owner’s guidebook and warranty information kit that comes with each of them.

Warranties on Existing Homes

Sellers of existing homes frequently purchase warranties to increase the appeal of their property to buyers. Towards the end of their terms, these warranties can usually be extended at the homeowner’s expense, often for $250 to $600 per year.

Study the warranty carefully as it is only as good as its terms. You may discover some limitations that can lessen the initial appeal. For instance, plumbing problems ahead of home’s foundation may be not included, which means many of the most common and destructive headaches will be your liability.

When you name for service, the warranty provider naturally sends off a local service company to remedy the situation. As they wish to pay out as little as necessary, be prepared for warranty providers to favor less expensive repairs over complete replacement.  And have your checkbook useful— even when the repair is covered, warranties characteristically need homeowners to pay a service fee for each repair maybe $25 to $75.

Receiving What’s Due

Like any other type of insurance, the rank of claims service linked with home warranties differs from company to company. If you require service, be ready to rise above obstacles. If the warranty company notifies you that your claim isn’t covered, ask them to quote a specific channel in the warranty document.

Note cautiously when your warranty expires. A few weeks before it does, give your home a thorough basement-to-roof evaluation to see if there are any covered problems that can still be fixed at the home warranty company’s expenditure.

The Value of USAA Membership

USAA membership is a benefit extended to those who have served in the U.S military and their families.

USAA provides life, home and car insurance, banking services, and independent financial advice from licensed financial planners. It also provides a buying service for diamonds and other jewelry, which will save you some funds if you are in the market of those things.

USAA Insurance

USAA Insurance provides one of the best values and their claims service is exceptional. The policy premiums are competitively priced and the coverage is better than anywhere else.

USAA provides a range of personal property and casualty (P&C) insurance, including automobile insurance, homeowner insurance, renters insurance, valuable personal property insurance, and umbrella insurance. Other than P&C insurance, USAA offers term life insurance, whole life insurance and annuities. USAA’s life insurance policies, while not completely unique in the industry, are different from most offerings since they do not include a war-exclusion clause.

USAA Banking Services

USAA banking services also save you a bundle and offer you more convenience. It operates limited-service financial centers in other cities, normally near military bases, which provide assistance and advice in obtaining services and opening accounts online. These limited service locations cannot process deposits or withdrawals, but ATM’s located on site do permit customers to make financial transactions.

Investing and Financial Planning

USAA offers a restricted discount brokerage service and a family of no-load mutual funds. Mutual funds established by other firms can also be bought and held in USAA investing accounts. USAA also provides limited independent financial planning advice, as well as a more systematic flat-free or hourly-rate financial planning service.

Other Business

Through its Alliance Services Company (ASC), USAA runs a mail-order catalog service focusing in the sale of diamonds and jewelry.

Besides, the ASC secures a variety of discounted services for members. These include travel-related services through rental car alliances with Avis Budget Group and Hertz Corporation, as well as discounts on cruise travel. Their retail alliances also comprise partnerships with FTD, FedEx, and ADT Security Services.




Readers here on HomeWarrantyReviews.com are a diverse bunch.  You have home buyers.  You have home sellers.  You have real estate professionals, and you even have members of the various professions involved directly and indirectly with the home warranty and home service contract industries.  Today’s article is for anybody who is new to the idea of home warranty.  The topic is one of the first things that any consumer or professional new to home warranties should be familiarized with.  Without further ado, let’s get down to why a home warranty and a home service contract are two completely different things!

Differences in home warranty and home service contract

What’s in a name anyway?  Well, sometimes a lot.  Take a home warranty, for example.  In the marketing world, a home warranty is a term that’s generally used to describe more than one type of contract.  And marketers don’t always make it perfectly clear to consumers whether “home warranty” is just a convenient label that’s used due to the need for a familiar way of describing a home service that isn’t always well known among homeowners and homebuyers.  You may have seen an advertisement or piece of literature about a home warranty.  Is that “warranty” really a home warranty, or is it a home service contract?  If you don’t know the difference between the two then read on and learn something that’s important to know when you own a house.

The letter of the law

No matter what it was called when you bought it, if you purchased a “home warranty” then you probably bought a home service contract.  Builders are typically the only people who have a need to buy a true home warranty.  A homeowner typically needs a home service contract.  Knowing the difference is important.  Here’s how it works in the simplest terms.

A home warranty, the true legal contract that warranties labor and materials, is passed from a seller to a buyer without cost when a house is new and being sold to the first occupant.  Though a builder’s warranty can be transferred to a second buyer during the sale of a house, it still doesn’t involve an added cost to that buyer.  A warranty, in the legally defined sense, isn’t something that can be sold.  It’s a guarantee, a right afforded to a customer, to expect that a product purchased will function properly inside a particular time frame.  In a true legal warranty contract, there is a form of compensation for failures, whether that amounts to failure due to material defect or workmanship.  The home warranty typically covers everything between the foundation and the roof, but not items that are not permanently installed, such as dishwashers, refrigerators, or ovens.

Since a home warranty is free of charge and is a legally binding contract, the home buyer has little reason to research the company backing the warranty.  And since the warranty is oftentimes purchased from a third party, in order to free the builder from any future liability to pay for repairs of poorly built or defective parts of a house, there is always a risk of a warranty being backed by a financially unstable company.  If the builder is the one backing the warranty then there may be an even greater risk than if the warranty was backed by a large company which specializes in providing insurance and/or warranties.

So far we’ve covered a very basic description of what a true home warranty is, what it covers, and the risks that can be associated with it.  Now let’s look at what a home service contract looks like by comparison.

Covering breakdowns that occur due to normal wear and tear

A home service contract is NOT a warranty!  Why the emphasis on “not?”  Well, you might be surprised how many consumers are confused about what they have purchased.  And it’s really not their fault that they are confused.  When you call a home service contract a home warranty you make confusion almost unavoidable.  But when you’re selling something you can’t afford to risk the consumer not knowing what your service or product is.  Between the market needing a convenient label for home service contracts, something that consumers will immediately relate to, and the almost inevitable confusion that results from the use of that convenient label lies the need to educate customers.  And that’s what we’re about to try to do in this article.

If you are in a house that is no longer covered by a warranty then anything that goes wrong, whether it be electrical wiring, plumbing, fixtures, etc, you’ll probably pay 100% of the cost of repairs or replacements out of your own pocket.  But you do have the option of buying a contract called a home service contract.  The purpose of a home service contract is twofold.  Let’s break down the two reasons for home service contracts being offered.

  1. When something breaks in a house it usually is completely unexpected.  We all have lives to deal with, and few of us have time for unexpected things that take us away from our jobs, our families, or our other commitments.  So time is a big, valuable thing for us.  And a home service contract is supposed to help homeowners avoid wasting time.  The idea is that the home service contract company has relationships with a lot of professional repair technicians.  And because they work with so many technicians, they can afford their customers access to licensed, bonded, pre-screened professionals in less time than the homeowner could have found them.  Instead of spending a whole day making calls, reading reviews from other consumers, and getting estimates, the homeowner with the home service contract is supposed to be freed to go on with his or her daily life.
  2. Cost!  Nobody likes dealing with the cost of fixing things that break.  We already pay a lot for our houses, and in some cases, we’re already strapped cash-wise.  This is the another big advantage that home service contract companies offer to their customers.  Instead of paying every penny of a home repair, the home service contract company is meant to cover some or all of the cost of a repair or replacement job.

So we’ve covered what a home warranty is and a bit of what a home service contract is, but we have not covered what a home service contract covers.  Let’s break that down into some detail.  Bear with us.  It’s a bit lengthy, but readers will be glad they read everything that follows before buying a home service contract.

What parts of a house does a home service contract cover?  

In some cases, a home service contract might cover most of what a home warranty originally covered.  But it varies greatly from one company to another.  So here’s the best advice anybody will give you about buying a home warranty.  Do NOT fixate on the price alone!  Pricing may look like the bottom line, but you really have to compare home service contract coverage, the companies’ reputations, and other factors aside from the prices.  

Coverage might include structural parts of a house, appliances, system components such as air conditioning and heating, water lines that run from the house to the city’s water lines underneath the street, and lots of other things.  But it’s important to be aware that not all home service contracts are the same.  In fact, they vary so much that a consumer really cannot afford to buy one without doing a lot of homework.  At the very least the buyer should read the contract word for word.

Sometimes the biggest difference is in the fine print

The biggest difference between a home warranty and a home service contract in terms of the way the contracts are written is sometimes in the loopholes.  These loopholes can be the difference between a home service contract being worth the money or not.  Here are some loopholes to watch out for.

Pre-existing conditions

It’s exactly what it sounds like.  A pre-existing condition is something that was already wrong or on its way to being wrong, due to neglect, poor installation, or other factors that the home service contract company deems to have caused a breakdown.  And this language is so vague that some companies use it as a way to deny any and every claim by their customers.  But a consumer can typically spot companies that abuse the pre-existing condition loophole by simply reading reviews from other customers.

Excluded parts

It’s not always safe to assume that if a home service contract covers an item that every part of that item is covered.  Some consumers find out the hard way that a part or a set of parts in an item, say a refrigerator, for example, are excluded.  Nobody wants to find that out the hard way, so it pays to check out every detail of the company’s reputation and the contract before buying a home service contract.

Maximum amounts the company will pay

This one is a big, big area of concern for anybody buying a home service contract.  Some home service contracts will only pay a maximum amount per contract period.  Some have different allowed maximums for different items covered under the contract.  Some will only pay a set maximum amount during the lifetime of a customer’s relationship with the company!  And some reserve the right to cancel or not renew a contract.  That leaves the company an opening to get rid of customers who are making too many repair requests.  It’s very important to look for language in the contract that might be taken more than one way.  If a consumer does not see every word of a contract as being explicitly clear then it may be necessary to get clarification of some parts of the contract in writing before buying the service contract.  And “in writing” is the most important part.

Also, take a look at these important pointers if your claims are denied by the home warranty company!

HomeWarrantyReviews.com wants our readers to be the best-educated consumers when it comes to home warranties and home service contracts.  If you found this article helpful please take a moment to tell us what you learned in the comments below.  Or email us at [email protected] to tell us how our article helped you and what we could do to make it more helpful to other readers.  If you are like most readers then you’ll probably want to keep going from here, on to the next question.  Why not read another of our articles or check out companies that you’re interested in knowing more about while you’re here on the website?




Purchasing warranty plans for household items has become a common thing these days. Over time, it has become one of the best ways to protect your budget against unexpected repairs and replacements of damaged household devices.

A Home Warranty, sometimes called an Appliance Warranty is a contract that agrees to offer discounted repairs and replacements of the covered devices. They cover damages resulting from wear and tear and hence are ideally suited for houses whose appliances are over 4 years old.

insurance on appliances

Home warranties differ from homeowner’s insurances in the fact that the latter covers damages and losses resulting from natural hazards or crimes while appliance warranty covers damages due to regular wear and tear. You can never replace a homeowner’s insurance with a home warranty. It is generally considered that home warranties are best suited for the following people who –

  • Own appliances that are over 4-5 years old
  • Can’t afford frequent repairs and replacements
  • Do not have a trusted contractor to perform the repairs
  • Have no time for do-it-yourself repairs
  • Are owning a home for the first time

So naturally, they are not suited for people who

  • Own brand new or fairly new devices
  • Can afford expensive repairs and replacements
  • Have a trusted contractor or is a contractor himself
  • Have the time and skill for DIY repairs

There are a lot of home warranty companies offering a range of packages to suit your requirements. So never feel that you have only one option. In fact there are so many options out there that you may want to read a Home warranty buyer’s guide before you make a decision. In general, home warranties are affordable, with the annual premium ranging anywhere between $250 to $1000. The premium usually depends on the amount of coverage you are purchasing.

The advantages of owning a home warranty are many. And also, it is the closest thing you can get to peace of mind when it comes to protecting your budget. Let’s take a look at the pros.

Advantages

  • Being the repair contract that it is, home warranty takes care of repairs and replacements of damages happening to the covered device for a stated period of time. So if your appliances crash during the coverage  period, you will not have to spend much from your pocket.
  • Saves your budget from unexpected expenses due to appliance damages.
  • Almost all the major appliances and systems are covered. Electrical, plumbing, HVAC and wiring in general are included in a standard warranty plan. You can always purchase additional coverage too.
  • Each time an appliance crashes, you simply have to place a call to your service provider. They will send a technician to your doorstep to fix the issue. You have to pay a service call fee each time an issue is raised.
  • Depending on the coverage you purchased, home warranties sometimes even replace your device with a brand new one if the technician pronounces the device unrepairable.
  • Home warranties increase the value of your property at the time of sale as sellers prefer homes that are covered by appliance warranty.

If you have doubts about the devices that are covered and omitted, you can go through What is covered under Home Warranty plans to get a clearer picture. If you are still not sure if you need home warranty or not, we suggest that you read an article on “Do I need home warranty?”, this will certainly give you some guidance.

Working

Home warranty works in a very simple way. An appliance crashes and you call up the warranty company and inform them about the damage. They will ask you to give them all the necessary information like device name, manufacturer’s details, model no, batch no, and other relevant matters.

Once they collect this info, they will call up a service vendor with whom they maintain business ties. The vendor then collects your contact details to talk to you about fixing an appointment. A qualified and experienced technician then comes over to look at your device. If the repairs needed are minor, he will do them right away. However, if major repairs are needed or if parts need to be replaced, the technician waits for the approval of the home warranty company. Parts needed will be procured by the company. You will pay the service call fee to the technician when he comes to your home.

Drawbacks

This is not a free of cost arrangement. In addition to the annual premium, you will be paying a service call fee (around $50) each time you place a claim. Like a coin with two sides, home warranties too have a few drawbacks. Let’s discuss them.

  • Home warranty companies will always try to repair and not replace your damaged device.
  • Home Warranties do not cover pre-existing conditions or damages resulting from lack of maintenance. They also do not cover damages occurring due to crimes or natural hazards, that is the job of Homeowner’s insurance.
  • The technician sent over to your house will decide the extent and nature of your damage. The Home Warranty company will consider his word and not yours when it comes to determining the action to be taken up. If you have disagreements on this, contact the customer service operative of the company.
  • Claims can often be denied on unclear grounds and by stating tiny clauses from the contract which are often overlooked by customers. Ensure that you read the policy booklet and contract carefully to avoid any misunderstandings.
  • You cannot raise multiple issues in a single claim.

The bottom-line

Home warranties are indeed a great way to insure your household devices. It protects your budget too. It is necessary that you make a wise decision regarding the choice of company and warranty plan so that you make the best out of the deal. The policy booklet and the contract are vital documents and they must, without fail, be studied and preserved carefully.

You can go through reviews about various companies and their plans on our website to compare and choose the best.




Warranty Direct has extended its services from the automobile industry (extended auto warranty plans) to home warranty and home appliance services. The  auto warranty company is venturing into the  home service market for the first time.

Warranty Direct

Tara Williams, the executive vice president of Warranty Direct commented on the extension of the services provided by the company that the vehicle warranty provider has now decided to extend its services into home warranty and home Appliances. She stated that this warranty helps you against unexpected repair bills on household appliances.

Warranty Direct claims that it is determined to satisfy their home warranty customers and has come up with different plans to fit their varying needs. These plans include Home care+ and Appliance care+ plans. Their Home care+ plan covers a wide variety of major home appliances, be it electrical, water heater, plumbing or any other house repairs.  You can use their Appliance Care+ plan which offers low cost coverage and repair of any of the following: washing machine, refrigerator, dryer, built-in microwave, dishwasher and oven.

Home Warranty services are only a call away. By having an extended Home Warranty, you can call their toll free number and make use of their services provided and enjoy a relaxed life.

Warranty Direct is a 30+ year old company,  one of the  largest and established auto service contract providers. It has an online division of a dealer agency and an Interstate National Dealer Service. Their expertise in auto warranties is among the top with over 2 million auto extended warranty contracts sold and over $1,000,000,000.00 in paid claims.  The company has direct-to-consumer division which is of one of the oldest and largest independent automobile extended warranty providers in the US. In addition to offering the auto warranties directly to consumers; over 2,200 manufacturers, dealers, banks and credit unions choose to sell their coverage.

For automobiles, Warranty Direct covers mechanical breakdown coverage, wear and tear protection, free roadside assistance membership, rental vehicle coverage, trip-interruption protection, direct payment of claims, nationwide coverage, toll-free customer service and easy enrollment options. Also, each of Warranty Direct plans clearly outlines what is covered and not covered.

According to their website, the company services and pays their own claims versus outsourcing them to other insurance brokers. Warranty direct has consistently received an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau and have been named to Forbes Magazine for the Best 200 small companies list for nearly three times. With a user friendly website, they are all geared up to provide essential information you need to know about the company and their products. Pricing details, claim process, ability to compare contracts online prior to the purchase and more features are available.




Are there scams in the home warranty industry?

When you look at the words most often used in emotional complaints about home warranty companies you may find that “scam” is a very common term. But if you look very closely at the home warranty industry it’s hard to find evidence of a scam rooted in the established home warranty companies.

Home Warranty Scams

Though home owners are not always happy with the speed or manner of the response to their claims it takes more than just complaints to make a true scam. So are there no scams in the home warranty industry? My personal opinion is that there are plenty of scams and if you look back you’ll find plenty more in the past. Does that make the home warranty industry unique? I definitely don’t believe so. Auto insurance, health insurance, home building, government, religion – you name it, there have been scandals and grounds to throw words like scam around. Home warranty is not unique in that it has unhappy customers. Show me an industry without unhappy customers and I’ll be the first to change careers. But like I mentioned before, home warranty customers have been victimized and are probably being victimized even today.

Spotting the scams and the companies that are not operating with the best interests of their customers in mind is the very first priority. This is where home owners and legitimate home warranty companies can work together. Real estate agents, home repair contractors, home inspectors, and many other professional and customer advocacy groups can also help to point out the signs that home warranty companies are not doing what is right for their customers.

 

How do you spot home warranty companies that may be scamming customers?

How can home owners identify home warranty companies that are likely to be scams or just not be doing what is right in terms of their commitments to customers? There are a few basic approaches to getting a good read on a home warranty company and all of them involve some time spent doing home work. What this comes down to really is customers taking their time and not making impulse purchases of home warranty contracts. And during that period of finding out about a home warranty company here are some things home owners would be wise to look out for:

  • Is the home warranty company well established? This one is important. Many home warranty companies that fail to take care of their commitments due to greed or negligent management practices still cannot be labeled scams. But like the companies that are intentionally misleading customers, the ones that do a bad job with customer service or mismanage the company’s assets tend to wind up being fly-by-night companies. If a company hasn’t been around long then home owners should be extra cautious.
  • Are people you know talking about the company? If you ask everyone you know about a home warranty company and nobody can tell you a thing about them then, again extra caution is wise. Keep in mind that hearing about other people you know signing up for a home warranty doesn’t necessarily mean a company will be good to deal with as a customer. Until you file a claim you don’t really know what you’ve gotten yourself into.
  • Do your state government’s insurance regulatory authorities or other public offices know anything about the home warranty company? Some states have rules for home warranty companies while others do not. If you live in a state that has no regulations, licensing requirements, or other rules for home warranty companies then you should tread very carefully. If you choose a home warranty company that fails to deliver on its promises your state may have little or no recourse available for you. If your state licenses or otherwise sets limits on home warranty companies don’t sign or buy anything until you know where the home warranty company stands with your state’s regulatory entity. And ask about complaints. Some officials can tell you if there have been complaints filed with their office or other offices against the home warranty company you are inquiring about.
  • Find out more about the company in terms of physical location and ownership. As mentioned earlier in this article, there are sometimes signals that a home warranty company isn’t legitimate. The harder it is to find out about the ownership and location of a company the more cautious a home owner should be about doing business with it.

 

What sorts of home warranty scams should you watch out for?

It’s difficult to predict what sort of stunt criminals will pull tomorrow but in terms of what scams I’ve heard of up to now, here are a few. The names may be funny but the financial losses and wasted time on the parts of the jilted customers is nothing to smile about.

 

“The Emperor’s New Clothes”

This one involves a company that isn’t a company at all. It has none of the financial depth that is required to cover the costs of handling repairs and replacements when home warranty customers file claims. In fact these companies rarely have a real office and follow the same pattern almost every time. They deny all the claims they can, approve the ones they can’t but then don’t pay anyone for the work performed, and then when frustrated customers cancel they promise refunds which they also fail to pay.

 

“The Ponzi Scheme”

These companies oftentimes pay their contractors and approve returns but do so in such a way as to gradually put the company further and further behind on various debts. While they do this they use positive customer reviews to attract more customers and also spend a great deal on advertising in some cases. By the time they become fat with customers and reach their peak they’ve already bankrupted the company through poor management. The customers who are holding new home warranty contracts the day the company finally sneaks out its back doors and turns off the phones are the ones who get hit the hardest. Sometimes this type of scam leaves a long-term trail of customers who don’t find out their contract is worthless until they attempt to contact their home warranty company’s customer service center. This grab-the-cash-and-dash routine has burned many, many home owners over the years.

 

“The Disguise”

Some people who found bad home warranty companies get away with their misdeeds or only receive a slap on the hand that holds the checkbook. They then go on to start other home warranty companies using new company names and sometimes using different people as the officers or owners of the company. By disguising themselves they evade the public scrutiny that would otherwise stop their scams cold. Home owners caught up in the web of these characters can count on denied claims, shoddy work, unpaid contractors pursuing the home owner for debts the home warranty company owes payment for, and many other unpleasant circumstances.

 

What can home owners do if they suspect they are dealing with a fraud that is posing as a home warranty company?

For the sake of other consumers, friends, and the home warranty industry where companies work diligently to satisfy their customers, any home owner who feels that a claim was handled unfairly or that there are signs of misconduct on the part of their home warranty company should not remain silent. All too often home warranty companies give the overall industry a bad name with their poor handling of claims, contractor relations, or other important areas of their businesses. And in the case of true scams, more often than not, the people behind the scams only get away with what they do because it takes so long for anyone in a position to stop them to realize what is happening. As consumers realize their options to use government offices, social media, and word of mouth to sound the alarm about bad home warranty companies it will become more and more difficult for new scams to find victims.

 

This is a guest article written by Kevin Wallach. As owner and writer at HomeWarrantyWiz.com Kevin spends a great deal of time collecting information to help his readers better understand home warranty plans. Though home warranty is not the most popular topic online, it does mean a lot to home owners who need help with questions about it.

 




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.

Difference Between Home Insurance And Home Warranty

difference between home warranty and homeowners insurance

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.

What Does A Home Warranty Contract Cover?

Items covered by a home warranty may vary by company and plan, but typically includes the following items:

  • Heating, ventilation and air conditioning system (HVAC)
  • Electrical system
  • Plumbing system
  • Water heater
  • Kitchen appliances such as refrigerator, stove/oven/range, built-in dishwasher, built-in microwave, garbage disposal, built-in trash compactor
  • Clothes washer and dryer
  • Garage door opener
  • Coverage for pools, spas, well pumps and other items may be available for an additional fee.

Benefits Of Home Warranty Coverage

To The Homeowner

  • Placing a claim and getting your appliance repaired is lot more easier.
  • Helps save up huge costs.
  • You can get repaired as many appliances you want provided they are covered.

To The Seller

  • Home may sell faster and at a higher price.
  • Protection from after-sale legal disputes.
  • Increases marketability of home.

To The Buyer

  • Warranty coverage on major systems and built-in appliances.
  • Protects your cash flow.
  • Access to network of qualified service technicians at your fingertips.

Home Insurance

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.

What Does A Home Insurance Policy Cover?

The insurance policy varies depending on your state of residence and type of policy, but generally it will cover the following.

  • Structure and contents of the house.
  • Personal property such as indoor and outdoor furniture, clothes and home electronics such as computer, TV, stereo, etc.
  • Jewelry may be covered up to a certain value, or itemized for its full value, or excluded entirely.
  • Living expenses if your home is uninhabitable as a result of a natural disaster.
  • Events like theft, vandalism, fire, windstorm, lightning, hail, falling objects such as a tree.
  • Liability claims such as someone got hurt while in your property and decided to sue you. The policy will take care of it.

Benefits Of Home Insurance

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.

  • Covers accidental damages to your interiors and exteriors as well.
  • Easy to renew all you have to do is pay the premium on time.
  • Processions are covered regardless of new or old.
  • Assures you peace of mind and gives you a feeling of safety and security.
  • Pays for loss and minor damages like broken glass of a window.

Cost/Pricing For Both

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.

How To Choose A Home Warranty?

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.

How To Make A Claim?

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.

How To Choose Home Insurance?

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.

 




HVAC Maintenance Checklist

 

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HVAC appliances are one of the most vital components in a home. Naturally, unexpected crashes and breakdowns of HVAC units disrupt a peaceful living. And once they crash, boy! They are really expensive to repair (or replace).

Any homeowner, in his right sense would therefore make sure that the heating, cooling and ventilation units are well taken care of and maintained. For all of you who are wondering how to extend the life of your HVAC appliances, this checklist is just the right thing for you!

Monthly maintenance routine

Yes, all HVAC appliances will do well if you give them some basic cleaning every month. Ensure that you do the following two steps at least once a month.

  • Check thermostat settings
  • Clean out the vents, replace filters, and keep it dust free as much as possible

Annual maintenance routine

The U.S. Dept. of energy advises homeowners to carry out a maintenance routine at least twice a year. This ensures that the power consumption is optimized and hazards are avoided. Here are the steps that you should carry out yearly to ensure healthy running of your HVAC appliances/ systems.

  • Hire a professional inspector to perform checks on your HVAC units
  • Hire a professional to clear the air ducts
  • Re check and tighten all electrical connections
  • Check refrigerant levels
  • Use suitable lubricants to lubricate moving parts
  • Clean the area around HVAC units and ensure that it always remains dry

If you think that these tasks are difficult and that your warranty plan will save you, here’s some incentive for you to get going in the right direction.

Home Warranty Companies usually DO NOT cover damages caused due to lack of  maintenance. Which means that if your system stops working and the technician diagnosis says that the damage was caused due to lack of maintenance, your claim may be denied.

If that is not compelling enough, here are some more things that will happen if you are careless about HVAC maintenance

  • Excess power consumption. Man! those electric bills are going to shock you (literally)
  • Unclean machinery heats up abnormally, this leads to fire hazards.
  • If vents are clogged with debris or other particulate matter, efficiency of the system drops
  • If you don’t monitor your gas/ fuel connections, health issues and fire hazards may happen

Appliances and systems in our home and around us help us lead a happy and easy life. So it is only fair that we do for them at least a fraction of what they do for us. Take good care of your appliances, don’t use them roughly and above all, purchase a home warranty plan to protect your budget against unexpected appliance crashes.

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Whether you are seeking to buy a home in the Phoenix area or sell one, you definitely need a real estate professional that you can trust. Some real estate agents perform better than others with regards to a number of homes sold but there are plenty of other factors such as good knowledge of the city of Phoenix, an established professional reputation with former clients to look for while choosing a trustworthy real estate professional. The leading Arizona real estate agents continue finding unique ways of marketing home listings and work diligently to educate homebuyers and sellers.

Top-Class-Real-Estate-Professionals-In-Phoenix

Below is the list of top 5 real estate agents in Phoenix who can assist you with their innovation, their sales production and their proficiency in short sales, investment properties, relocation, second homes and/or vacation homes and much more!

 

Joani Frankel

Trustworthy-Realtor-in-Phoenix

With more than 38 years of experience as an Arizona realtor in the greater metro Phoenix/Scottsdale area, Joani Frankel has watched the neighborhood grow from almost a million people to over 4 million people. Frankel moved to Arizona to escape the cold of the Northeast and was lucky to have a realtor who excelled in “people” services. This know-how framed her skills and values as a Real Estate professional. As a proficient realtor, Frankel is empowered to research solutions and is backed by two skilled assistants to provide supportive, informative and resourceful information. Over the years, Frankel has been active and successful and have acquired a strong network of experts that support her services and help treat each new client with respect and courtesy. Frankel says, “I love life and try to live each day with care, courtesy and consideration for all I meet and all I do.”

As a graduate of Syracuse University, Frankel puts her degree and business background to work for you each and every day. Frankel is a Buyer Broker Specialist at Realty One Group and has consistently listed and sold multiple millions of dollars of property each year. Whether you need a home inspector, a lender, an interior design consultant, a cleaning service or personal concierge, you can avail the best support team to work for you! Since 1978, Frankel has been serving as a dedicated Buyer’s broker and is well versed in problem-solving, contract negotiation and above all, fair, ethical and caring client support and service. Frankel says, “My career goals are only met if YOU are satisfied as I serve as your Buyer’s Representative. You may be looking for your 1st home or your 10th! It might be a condo or a mansion. If you are an investor I’ll help you increase your bottom line!”

Frankel operates mainly in neighborhoods such as Cave Creek, Chandler, Fountain Hills, Glendale, Goodyear, Litchfield Park, Paradise Valley, Peoria, Phoenix, Mesa, Scottsdale, Sun City, Surprise, and Tempe. She is a Senior Real Estate Specialist (SRES) and her specialties include:

  • Representing Buyers
  • Representing Sellers
  • First-Time Buyers
  • Relocations
  • Luxury Properties
  • Senior Housing

Frankel is knowledgeable on reverse mortgages, real estate planning, 1031 exchanges, and housing options and has also been educated on all aspects of 50+ buying and selling.

 

Jacqueline Moore

Best-Realtor-in-Phoenix

A native to Phoenix, Jacqueline Moore is ardent about everything in business, from marketing products to streamlining processes and evolving technology. With a strong eye for detail, Moore knows how to drive initiatives for both the organization and the management team contributing to long-lasting operational brilliance. Her commitment to charitable organizations and the community stem from her background in education. Whether it is monetary support through each real estate transaction, events, and awareness, or daily help involving contact and participation, Moore has become prominent by identifying the communities that support and need support too.

Moore has lately taken the position of leading the Phoenix Operations for Opendoor. Recently listed on the front page of The Wall Street Journal Business section, Opendoor is changing the way homes are bought and sold by bringing top class software, data science and design to an old industry. Based in Silicon Valley, Opendoor is on a mission to help alleviate some of the pain points of one of the more complex, hectic processes; the residential real estate transaction. Every decision in Opendoor is led with honesty, certainly impacting one of the greatest assets around; homeownership.

Before Opendoor, Moore was the Vice President of HomeSmart managing 20,000+ transactions and $4.2 billion in sales volume yearly. Over the years, Moore has been helping her clients through the entire buying process and with the professional standards that her customers expect while selling their homes. Passionate about helping house hunters, Moore is devoted to delivering quality homes to the market. A proud graduate of the Grand Canyon University, Moore enjoys traveling, cooking, and creating the next best finger painting!

 

Dorothy Harrison

Realtor-in-Arizona

Over the past 30 years, Harrison has been committed to bringing happy buyers and sellers together. Whether it’s buying or selling, she ensures to make the process as stress-free and enjoyable as possible! A full-time Associate Broker, Harrison dedicatedly helps her clients by the implementation of effective sales strategies and marketing tools to best market their homes. Harrison has expertise in relocation services (Small or Large Corporate moves), pre-owned, luxury, vacation, and new construction residential homes and is also experienced in real estate investments and 1031 tax deferred exchanges. She has even had the honor of being a pre-licensing Real Estate Instructor for the State of Arizona for almost a decade. Besides, Harrison assisted Bank United of Miami Florida with their REO properties for 2.5 years before their FDIC closure. She has also successfully owned and operated her own real estate company in Texas. As a reliable multi-million producer, Harrison approaches her business with determination, enthusiasm, and passion.

Harrison moved to East Valley in 1998 and concentrates her practice in cities such as Chandler, Phoenix, Gilbert, Queen Creek, Sun Lakes, Mesa, Tempe, Gold Canyon, San Tan Valley, Ahwatukee, and Maricopa. An Alumna from The University of Texas at El Paso, Harrison is proud to hold the following designations sponsored by the National Association of Realtors (NAR):

  • Certified Residential Specialist (CRS) – a designation held by less than 5% of the Realtor population.
  • E-Pro – E-Pro recognizes that the newest commodity in the real estate business is information. By obtaining the E-Pro designation, Harrison now has the internet skills to boost your transactions faster with more efficient technology.
  • Accredited Buyer Representative (ABR) – Harrison meets strict educational and practical necessities set by the Real Estate Buyer’s Agent Council (REBAC)
  • Short Sale & Foreclosure Resource Agent (SFR) – Harrison knows how to help sellers maneuver the intricacies of short sales and also help buyers pursue short sale and foreclosure opportunities
  • MRE – Masters of Real Estate Society 2007-2010 (Arizona Designation)

Harrison is well aware of the latest real estate developments and knows how to discover the finest properties and negotiate the best deals. She embraces strategies to identify desirable properties for buyers and implements innovative marketing techniques for the sellers. As a Licensed Arizona Real Estate Agent, Harrison skillfully manages clients’ transaction details to include inspections, deadlines, title work, loan procedures, and professional recommendations. Harrison’s awards include:

  • International Diamond Society – 2013, 2012, 2011, 2009, 2008
  • International Sterling Society – 2014, 2010
  • Bronze Circle – 2006, 2007, 2015
  • Customer Satisfaction Award 2012

She has the following relocation certifications:

  • Cartus Affinity Specialist
  • Cartus Network Inventory Specialist
  • Cartus Network Referral Specialist
  • Cendant Mobility Referral Specialist
  • USAA Mover’s Advantage “A” Team Certified
  • NFCU Certified Specialist
  • SIRVA RELOCATION – Certified Agent Advantage Specialist
  • ALTAIR Relocation Specialist

Harrison’s interests include football, cooking, gardening, and movies.

 

Liz Harris

Top-selling-realtor-in-Phoenix

Liz Harris has a true passion for real estate. Whether working with Arizona first-time buyers, new home buyers, short sales, luxury home buyers, Harris guides her clients through every step of the real estate process. Harris is one of the highly respected agents and keeps her updated with the newest trends to impart the necessary real estate information to her clients in this rapidly changing industry. Founder of Liz Harris realty, based in Chandler, Arizona, Harris is an 11 year veteran of buying and selling six and seven figure properties in the Phoenix metro area.

A resident of Maricopa County, Arizona since 1999, Harris always goes the extra mile whether it is finding buyers for her listing or placing a buyer in a dream home. She has carved a niche for herself in the Phoenix Metro real estate by specializing areas such as Chandler, Gilbert, Mesa, Paradise Valley, Phoenix, Queen Creek, Scottsdale, and Tempe. As a Certified New Home Buying Specialist, she expertly negotiates with new home builders to get the terms and conditions they want. Harris employs knowledgeable marketers who use cutting-edge marketing tactics to get maximum exposure and increase online presence in minimum time using Facebook, YouTube, Google and more!

Harris symbolizes the perfect blend of positive energy, integrity, and vision while maintaining a strong determination to get the result you want. This has helped her acquire the professional designations such as Certified Short Sale Negotiator (CSSN), Certified Distressed Property Expert (CDPE) and the following:

  • Accredited Buyer’s Representative (ABR) – Harris has met strict educational and practical requirements set by the Real Estate Buyer’s Agent Council (REBAC)
  • Certified International Property Specialist (CIPS) – Harris demonstrates her international experience and participates in international programs offered by National Association of Realtors
  • Short Sales and Foreclosure Resource (SFR) – Harris knows how to help sellers maneuver the complexities of short sales as well as assist buyers pursue short sale and foreclosure opportunities
  • Seller Representative Specialist (SRS) – Harris meets specific educational and practical experience criteria in representing sellers and can guide you through a successful transaction

As a proud wife and grateful mother of 3, Harris finds fulfillment both in her personal life and her business life. She enjoys roller coasters, hot bubble bath and roller skating. Consistently ranked in the top 2% of producing agents, Harris would love to hear from you!

 

Rosa Janssen

Top-Realtor-in-Phoenix-Arizona

With over 25 years of experience in the real estate industry, Janssen’s goal is to help her clients in every phase of buying, selling or investing in real estate. Her experience with RE/MAX, one of the world’s prominent franchisors of real estate brokerage services, help provide the most powerful real estate brand, recognition, and resources to the clients. As a resident of the Valley of the Sun for the past decade, Janssen relocated to Arizona from Park Ridge, Illinois, where she held a Broker’s license and was a legal assistant in a law practice focusing on real estate. Bi-lingual in Spanish, Janssen also holds Florida’s broker license. “My pledge is to provide superb professional services and an exceptional experience!” says Janssen.

Janssen is a very detailed and studies properties thoroughly to obtain the best selling price possible. She is a delight to work with and mainly active in areas such as Apache Junction, Carefree, Fountain Hills, Paradise Valley, Cave Creek, Chandler, Gilbert, Mesa, Phoenix, Queen Creek , Rio Verde, Scottsdale, and Tempe. Her professional designations and certifications include the following:

  • At Home with Diversity (AHWD) – Janssen adapts to increasing cultural diversity in the real estate market and prudently plans to meet the requirements of varied clients, gain a competitive edge, and expand opportunities
  • NAR’s e-PRO – Janssen is dedicated to making the most of today’s technology to help clients with their real estate needs
  • Graduate, Realtor Institute (GRI) – Janssen has an increased knowledge and skills in a broad array of technical subjects and the fundamentals of real estate
  • Short Sales & Foreclosure Resource (SFR) – Janssen knows how to help sellers maneuver the complexities of short sales as well as assist buyers pursue short sales and foreclosure opportunities
  • Seniors Real Estate Specialist (SRES) – Janssen is knowledgeable on reverse mortgages, real estate planning, 1031 exchanges, and housing options and has been educated on all phases of 50+ buying and selling
  • Seller Representative Specialist (SRS) – Janssen has met specific educational and practical standards in representing sellers and can guide you through a successful transaction

Additionally, Janssen has earned the Certified Negotiation Expert (CNE) designation and the Green Certification. She was recently acknowledged into to the Master of Real Estate (MRE) Society by demonstrating her commitment to excellence through professional education and practices. Less than 1% of REALTORS in Arizona belong to this elite Society.

Janssen along with her husband Sascha, an expert helicopter pilot and also multilingual in German and Dutch are active in local organizations including Christ Church of Fountain Hills and Fountain Hills Sister Cities. She enjoys the outdoors and spending time with family, friends, and her two sons. “I look forward to meeting and working with you, and welcome the opportunity to demonstrate professional services that get results!”




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.

Top tips for Structural Warranty for Newly constructed homes

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.

What is Structural Warranty?

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.

Is Structural Warranty Necessary for me as a Buyer?

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 Builder’s Perspective

Settling Terms of the Deal

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.

A Middleman

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.

Value of the Home

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.

How Structural Warranty Works

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.

What Structural Warranty Covers

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:

  • Beams, Pillars, and Columns
  • Girders and Lintels
  • Foundation of the home
  • Masonry arches
  • Roof beams, and framing systems
  • Flooring
  • Walls and partitions that bear the load and contribute to the building’s structural validity.

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.

The Cost

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.

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Here’s a write up about top home warranty companies in New Jersey. Now all you need to do is scroll through the list of companies, visit our site for a free quote and user reviews to pick your home warranty! We guarantee you that you’ll find that it is very useful!

Home Warranty Companies In New Jersey

Located in the Northeastern and Middle Atlantic regions of U.S.A, New Jersey is indeed a popular state. Fondly called as the Garden State of America, NJ has much to offer for its residents. No matter where in New Jersey you are, if you are a homeowner, your primary concern would be caring for your family and your home. Like most homeowners, it’s natural that you’ll worry about the expenses of repairing unexpected damages and replacements of your household appliances.

So here’s our list of top home warranty companies in NJ based on user reviews and ratings-

These companies have been around for several years and are on this list because of the feedback they have received on our site from their customers. Take a detailed look at each one of ‘em!

1. American Home Shield

American Home Shield or AHS as it’s commonly called, is a company that founded the home warranty industry. Naturally, this is a company with unparalleled experience and a nationwide footprint. AHS also has a massive contractor network where every single technician is selected after a stringent screening process.

AHs offers plans that are designed to suit the needs of homeowners, Realtors, buyers and sellers alike. Their plans are reasonably priced and standard plans start from as low as $250 every year. The company also has an online claims facility and a customer service facility that runs around the clock.

2. Home Service Club

Yet another popular home warranty company in NJ is the Home Service Club (HSC). This too is yet another company with nationwide footprint and with coverage in over 48 states. HSC too screens each technician in their contractor network and follow up with the customers to ensure that they are satisfied with the services.

HSC’s plans start from $400 annually and the deductibles are charged between $65 to $125. Warranty purchases can be made through their website which also has the facilities to allow homeowners track their account. Online claims can be made just as easily as claims can be made with their round the clock customer care service.

3. Select Home Warranty

Headquartered in NJ, Select Home Warranty is one company which has plans to cover anything from rental properties to mobile homes and condo units. They have three main warranty plans which vary in the extend of coverage and comes at affordable prices. This is one company that does not place an age restriction on the house or mandate a home inspection prior to purchasing a plan.

Select Home Warranty’s plans start at $299 annually and the average deductible is charged at $45 per service visit. Customers can purchase plans through their website and even place claims online to schedule to a repair.

4. HSA Home Warranty

This is a company with close to 30 years experience in selling warranty products. Like the others on this list, HSA too offers competitive plans at compelling prices to its customers. More than just home warranty plans, the company also has a host of other services and even a newsletter for homeowners, sellers, buyers and real estate agents.

Annual premium for plans sold by HSA range between $589 – $619. The deductible varies depending on the kind of plan you chose but is usually between $50 – $100. HSA too has a 24/7 claims facility and also the facility to place claims through their website.

5. Choice Home Warranty

Choice Home Warranty is a popular choice among NJ homeowners owing to their comprehensive warranty plans and affordable pricing policies. With policies that will add to the value of your home, CHW has managed to garner a lot of positive feedback from their customers.

Standard plans are available at premiums ranging from $370 – $450. Deductibles are charged starting at $60. CHW too has an online claims facility and has a massive network of skilled, licensed and experienced technicians ready to be dispatched when claims come in.

The Bottom Line

This list has been prepared based on actual user reviews submitted on our site. Therefore, there is a good chance that we may have missed out on an awesome company due to insufficient reviews. We welcome inputs from readers based in NJ to know more about companies there. Do let us know what you think. Also, you can take a look at top home warranty companies in various states across U.S.A. Cheers!