A home warranty is a major part of any real estate transaction. Sellers need to purchase a warranty if they want to sell their homes faster and for more money. Buyers, on the other hand, benefit from the fact that a warranty protects them in case anything goes bad. If repairs are needed, for example, the new owner only has to pay a minimal fee rather than the retail price.
Top 5 Home Warranty Companies of 2019
Learn more about top home warranty providers in the United States.
American Home Shield
Generous coverage, transparent terms, and an incredibly supportive team put American Home Shield (AHS) at the top of the list. AHS pays up to $3,000 per item for most appliances and systems. That’s way more than most providers are willing to pay.
First American Home Warranty
With a $75 flat-rate service fee, the company offers the lowest service fee in the industry. In comparison, most companies charge up to $125 per service call. They also offer solid coverage.
TotalProtect offers an impressively thorough coverage. The Combo plan, their most expensive plan, covers pretty much everything you’d want to protect including expensive items, break-prone items, and uncommon items such as smoke detectors.
The company offers an enviable 180-day workmanship guarantee which is twice as long as what you get with AHS. It means that if any issues arise within six months of purchasing the warranty, the company will cover 100 percent of the service costs.
Finding the Best Home Warranty Company
Choosing the right home warranty company, however, can be a challenge. New companies keep coming up every year, just as often as old ones die away. Also, warranty companies can be over the top with advertising. So, separating the good from bad isn’t easy.
Luckily, we’ve been in the industry long enough to know what to look for in a great provider. Here’s how we choose the best warranty companies:
There are three broad categories of warranties:
- those that cover the structure only
- those that cover appliances only
- and those that cover both the structure and appliances.
We prefer providers that cover both the structure and appliances. Even though these types of warranties can be expensive, they give you greater peace of mind.
Another thing we consider is what types of appliances and how many appliances in total the warranty covers in the basic plan. The greater the variety and higher the number of appliances covered, the more value you get for your money.
Speaking of money, you also want to choose a provider that pays generously for arising issues. Whether it’s a problem with the building itself or an appliance, the company should be willing to cover a significant portion, if not the entire cost.
This applies especially to replacements although repairs should also be kept in mind. Some home warranty providers are not willing to cover expensive replacements, often leaving homeowners with a heavy burden on their shoulders.
To determine the best warranty providers, we begin by finding out what each company pays for common situations and comparing the figures with caps from other companies. The best companies are those that are ready to back the consumer with generous caps or by removing maximum caps altogether.
Another issue is customer support. Every single day consumers file complaints about service providers who won’t pick their calls. And, home warranty companies have been mentioned quite a bit. Something that’s covered in the warranty agreement breaks down and you call your company all day in vain.
We’re aware of this and always exclude notorious companies from out lists. If a company has been frequently mentioned for failing to pick calls or respond to clients’ messages, we wouldn’t recommend such a company.
We also try to leave out companies that put policyholders on hold for too long as well as those whose sales reps want to jump into a sales pitch without even listening to the client.
When you have a problem with the house or perhaps an appliance, a warranty agreement says that you should call the company right away. The problem is that sometimes you may do exactly that and still be forced to wait days before a technician comes in to take a look at the situation.
It’s important to find a warranty provider that won’t put you through such headaches. What if it’s a washing machine that has refused to work – on laundry day? Do you sit there a whole day waiting for the technician? Or it could be an issue with the plumbing that requires urgent action.
You can’t wait for long with such issues. Therefore, we also consider turnaround time and favor companies that do their best to respond within the shortest time.
Finally, a home warranty provider should be very clear about what is covered, what is not, and the course of action in every possible eventuality. Some companies have a habit of concealing important details of a contract by using confusing language. We only consider companies that lay everything open and use simple, easy to understand words.
Also, we’re aware of companies that try not to say the amount they’ll pay in the event of a situation. These companies are also excluded from our best home warranty provider lists. Instead, we only recommend providers that have stated clearly how much they pay for specific situations and how much the policyholder is required to pay.
If you’re currently looking to purchase a home warranty, we recommend that you pick from the list above. If you choose not to, keep our above mentioned criteria in mind. You’ll find a great provider.