6 Ways to Maximize Your Home Warranty Benefits
After purchasing your dream home, you are required to make two main types of expenses throughout your home ownership. These expenses are classified under Compulsory and Optional expenses, and they are critical for maintaining your home ownership and managing the property.
The compulsory expenses are mandatory payments you have to make to maintain your home ownership. They include monthly mortgage payments, property taxes, homeowners insurance, utility bills, maintenance and repairs, and sometimes homeowners association (HOA) dues.
The optional expenses include buying a home warranty, home upgrade, décor, and furnishing, among others. Though optional, buying a home warranty for your high-end appliances and systems is a worthy investment. According to a recent post by Cinch Home Services, buying a home warranty can save homeowners from emergency spending in case a home appliance or system breakdown. The home warranty company that provides coverage for various household systems and appliances, also indicated that “you can have a damaged system or appliance replaced if it is fully covered.
So, what is a home warranty, and how can homeowners maximize the warranty benefits?
What is a home warranty?
A home warranty is a service contract between a homeowner and a home warranty company to cover the repair or replacement cost of selected home appliances and systems. The warranty can cover the HVAC system, electrical system plumbing fittings, furnace, refrigerator, dishwashers, etc. depending on the type of contract you have with the company. This helps homeowners to avoid expensive repairs of damaged equipment.
When you file a claim, the warranty company sends in their service providers or technicians to check the fault. After assessing the damages, they send feedback to the warranty company on the type of fault, and the kind of servicing needed.
If the fault and repair components are fully covered by your warranty, the system will be fixed without you making any payment. If it isn’t fully covered, you will have to pay for any extra cost.
How to get the most out of a home warranty
One of the first things to do after moving into your new home is to consider whether you need a home warranty. As you ponder on the decision, know that receiving home warranty claims isn’t automatic. You can be denied! Before a warranty company fully or partially covers your repair or replacement cost, there are terms and conditions to meet. To avoid being denied, you need to fully understand your warranty and what it covers. Also, know your rights and responsibilities to maximize its benefits. Here are ways to maximize your warranty benefits.
Get a wider coverage
Home warranty companies have different warranty packages for different purposes. You can buy a standard or premium package depending on the level of coverage you want. A standard package normally gives partial coverage while a premium can give you extensive/full coverage. Some companies also have a variety of packages to suit a homeowner’s needs. Under these packages are warranty plans including, systems plans, appliance plans, and combination plans.
In an appliance plan, you can cover all or some of your home appliances depending on the package you buy. The system plan also gives cover for some or all major home systems. A combination plan allows you to cover some or all your home appliances and systems under a single warranty. Depending on the package your policy may give you full or partial coverage.
So, for wider coverage, you should be considering a combination plan to cover both your systems and home appliances.
Understand the terms and conditions of your warranty
The devil, they say is in the details, so you need to read and understand the policy’s terms and conditions before signing any contract. You should know what your policy covers and what it doesn’t; know the extent of coverage; and the things you need to ensure to qualify for a warranty claim. This makes you well-informed about the nitty-gritty of the contract.
Ensure proper maintenance
You only qualify for a warranty claim if, you are up to date with your maintenance. Most systems and appliances require scheduled maintenance to work properly and efficiently. You need to follow the manufacturer’s maintenance guide to qualify for claims in case of a breakdown.
Contact your warranty company first for Repairs
When a covered appliance or system develops a fault, call your warranty company first. Don’t try to fix the problem before sending a compensation claim. Your home warranty company can deny your claims if you hire someone aside from their service company for the repair.
Enquire about the possibility of hiring your own service provider
Enquire from your warranty company if you can hire your own service personnel in case of a breakdown. You may have worked with a trusted service provider in your old home and would want to continue with the partnership. To be on the safer side, check if the company allows that to avoid your claims being denied.
Explore the possibility of having a cash payment
Some warranty companies do offer cash payment instead of having your damaged appliance or system replaced. Although the cash offer in most cases cannot cover the cost of a new replacement, it gives you the leverage of getting a new and better replacement. It is better than having the old appliance/system repaired over and over.
Looking at the monthly fees for a home warranty, you need to do everything right to get a deserving benefit after an appliance or system breakdown. So, ensure you understand what you are signing up to, get extensive coverage, ensure proper maintenance, and always keep your warranty period in mind.