What are the HVAC pitfalls of home warranty plans?

There are many moving parts that come along with purchasing a home. One of them being your home warranty plan. Your home warranty plan should cover the cost of repair or replacement for major household items. Sounds like a good idea, right? In this article, we’ll discuss some downsides of home warranty plans, especially when it comes to your HVAC services.

What is a home warranty?

Let’s start with the basics: what exactly is a home warranty? This is a plan that will pay for repairs and the replacement of appliances and systems within your home. Some of these appliances include things like your dishwasher, plumbing, furnace, and HVAC system. Some home warranty plans may even cover bigger appliances like your refrigerator, washing machine, and dryer. So, when you run into an issue with any of these, you can call the warranty provider and they will get things in place to get your appliance back in working order.

It’s important to note that you should not confuse your home warranty plan with a homeowner’s insurance policy, which is essentially your insurance coverage for damage done to your home and items within your home. Insurance is often required by a mortgage provider. A home warranty plan is optional and up to the homeowner.

With a home warranty plan, you may not be able to choose which HVAC company gets sent out to service or install your system.

What are some positives of a home warranty plan?

A little peace of mind

It’s no secret that having to shell out a lot of money on a major, unexpected repair is a bad situation to be in as a homeowner. Especially if it is for something like installing a new AC unit, which can potentially cost thousands of dollars.

This is even more scary if you are a new homeowner who just spent a lot of cash to be able to close on your new home. The home warranty will give you a little opportunity to push some of that cost onto your warranty provider.

They are convenient

Your first thought when something breaks around the house is going to be “who do I need to call to fix this?” A home warranty usually takes this step out of the equation for you. You’ll call the warranty service company and then they will make the decision about who will take care of your problem. This can either be good or bad for you as the homeowner, which leads us into our next topic: the downsides of home warranty plans.

What are the downsides of home warranty plans?

If you are considering paying for a home warranty plan, consider some of the potential downsides of doing so:

Service fees

Even though most home warranties will cover most of the repair expense, they don’t cover it all. When a repair needs to happen, you’ll have to pay a service fee of anywhere between $50-$75 out of pocket to cover the call. For many HVAC repairs, this ends up being a large portion of what you would have paid otherwise for the service had you just called us at Foulks Southern Air directly.

Exclusions

Your home warranty is essentially only useful when they actually cover the repair or replacement that you may need. There is a list of “standard features,” but others can be outside the lines of coverage, or require an extra fee for the required protection. An example of something that might fall outside of standard coverage would be a swimming pool pump.

You can also be denied if the feature is covered, but has not been properly maintained. So, if you just bought your home that has a 10+ year-old AC unit that was not taken care of by the last owner, the warranty might be worthless when the unit gives out.

Service uncertainty

Your home warranty plan is only as good as the company that stands behind it. Unfortunately, most warranty providers tend to go with the cheapest company, and not the most qualified. When it comes to the company having to replace parts of your HVAC unit, they opt for the cheapest parts that probably won’t last. When it comes to replacing your HVAC unit completely, they will, again, go with the cheapest option—not considering things like the energy-efficiency, size, or comfort settings of the unit.

Less control

While you can hand off the decision-making about how to tackle repairs in your home to someone else, it means that you have little control into how these repairs are being made, who is making them, and what brands are involved..

If you have a newer home and have a home repair budget on hand for maintenance, you might decide to skip a home warranty. You can count on Foulks Southern Air Heating & Cooling for all of your HVAC service needs here in Amite City, Hammond, and all of Southeast Louisiana. Give us a call today to get started!

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