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Old 05-12-2017, 08:13 PM
Location: Georgia
4,548 posts, read 3,980,203 times
Reputation: 15726


Originally Posted by merewenc View Post

ETA: Our current house that we're buying, the gas furnace is original to the 21-year-old house and will be over $6,000 to replace if the Internet estimate sites are to be believed. So I think we'll get our money's worth this time, too.
You might want to just make sure that the furnace is covered by the HWC. Some companies exclude HVAC systems over a certain age.
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Old 05-12-2017, 08:39 PM
16,739 posts, read 3,694,174 times
Reputation: 5113
home warranties are a rip off.
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Old 05-13-2017, 09:17 AM
Location: Houston
21,898 posts, read 11,284,051 times
Reputation: 8752
They are not worthless. Get the seller to pay for it.
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Old 05-13-2017, 09:20 AM
Location: The Heart of Dixie
1,357 posts, read 1,057,489 times
Reputation: 3428
After renting a home from someone with one of those home warranties, I would never purchase one myself. The AC broke and the home warranty company was not only slow getting service calls set up, but the company they were contracted with was horrible. It took almost two months and seven visits from their techs to finally just replace the unit.

I understand that repairing/replacing the unit without a warranty would be more expensive, but it would give me the freedom to make a choice based on the quality of service.
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Old 05-13-2017, 01:38 PM
Location: Paranoid State
13,047 posts, read 10,151,567 times
Reputation: 15644
We all face the choice of being self-insured or purchasing insurance. The same calculus is true for home warranties.

I've had both good and bad experiences with home warranty companies. You need to actively manage the home warranty company when you have an issue -- don't just let the home warranty company give you poor service.

For example, in a house we purchased, we had an issue with a Viking gas oven. It is a rare product -- not rare in the sense of valuable, but rare in the sense that it was not a market success so there are few out there in the real world. The warranty sent a tech out to do stuff. Over the course of 6 weeks or so, that tech had to come out about once/week because the oven still misbehaved. He replaced several parts, which solved some of the problems -- but not all. The final problem was that the oven ran about 40 to 60 degrees hot -- out of spec. This tech basically said he'd replaced everything that is replaceable, and he was at a loss. We called Viking, found a trained & authorized service company, and insisted that the warranty company use them. The warranty company by this time told us to use this Authorized Viking service company and just send the bill to the warranty company for reimbursement.

The Authorized Viking service company had a way of calibrating the thermostat that the original service company did not know about.

The main thing we learned was to insist on a factory authorized repairman for the specific brand (GE, Viking, Wolf/Sub Zero, etc). This sometimes required escalating the issue to a supervisor at the outset. Once we learned this, we've had good outcomes on other service calls (plumbing, appliance, etc.).
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Old 05-13-2017, 01:53 PM
Location: Central Texas
20,233 posts, read 37,342,164 times
Reputation: 22279
As said earlier, in Texas the contract is written for the seller to pay for the one year warranty. In our office it is our policy to give information on several companies (at least three, the ones that we know from experience have local reps will go to bat for our clients - and, no, there are no kickbacks), just as we live info on several home inspection companies, etc., and tell the buyer they are welcome to use one of those or another one.

I have had a seller who was stationed overseas with the foreign service have occasion to use her homeowner's warranty that she had before we listed her house. The AC leaked and when I came into the vacant house with the cleaners to tell them what needed to be done for the upcoming open house, half the house was flooded and the wood laminate was curling up everywhere. The homeowner's warranty not only fixed the AC with no issue but replacing the floor was covered by her homeowner's insurance (I know all of this because being the only one in the country - heck, on the continent, I dealt with all of it for her).

She had had a couple of prior occasions before leaving to use the warranty and was quite pleased. I've had buyers (who didn't pay for the warranty but wanted to make sure if anything broke they were covered) have good and bad experiences with them, because they DO call when it happens, and most of the companies now notify the buyer's agent when their client uses the warranty so we can check if the buyer doesn't call us and see how satisfied they are.

The one thing to do when checking a warranty company BEFORE the warranty is ordered is to read the coverage, which is usually available online and has different plans at different prices depending on depth of coverage. If you want more coverage than the plan the seller will pay for provides, you can usually arrange to pay the extra yourself.

A Realtor who is an advocate for their client will not require them to purchase a homeowner's policy, but will make darned sure they are aware of the option. To do anything else would not be in the client's best interest. This assumes that the client is adult and competent enough to make sure a decision either way on their own, and if they aren't, they shouldn't be buying a house in the first place. I have had one client decide not to purchase the warranty in all my years in real estate, and she used to buy and remodel houses professionally and preferred to do the work herself and knew where to get deals on things.
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Old 05-13-2017, 02:00 PM
Location: Salem, OR
13,899 posts, read 32,403,758 times
Reputation: 12551
In my area we can't take any money for home warranties so there are no kickbacks here.

My general opinion of home warranties is that they are a waste of money. Home buyers should save money every year for repairs. That way you have the money for a new roof, etc. That said, first timers that are just eeking out getting into a starter home or relocating home buyers that had huge moving expenses that buy a home that has old systems often benefit from having one in place paid for by the seller. I don't think I've ever had a buyer pay for a home warranty.

I've had a client get a new dishwasher when it broke two weeks after closing, and one got a new furnace. Another one should have gotten a new furnace, but the company did the repair instead on a 25-year-old furnace.
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Old 05-13-2017, 08:41 PM
879 posts, read 618,603 times
Reputation: 883
Originally Posted by MikeJaquish View Post
These were "commissions" and openly offered before RESPA.

It was pretty nuts, IMO.

And, thanks for the kind words!
Nice! 😎
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Old 05-23-2017, 12:28 PM
Location: SNA=>PDX 2013
2,541 posts, read 2,956,054 times
Reputation: 2914
Glad I found this as I'm debating on getting a warranty. I can totally see why this would be useless and wasted money for the majority.

I'm debating because when I bought my 5 year old condo (warranty was paid by seller), I was grateful for it when the a/c went out. I paid $75, they paid $900. I just put a bid on a 90 year old house, no warranty, and I'm thinking I may be willing to pay the $300 for it....depending on what it covers (need to do more research). There's no a/c, brand new furnace and fridge. Stove, DW and W/D are older. And considering the house is 90 years old...well....who knows what could go wrong.
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Old 05-23-2017, 01:39 PM
569 posts, read 250,563 times
Reputation: 659
Our seller is buying a home warranty up to $650. I've read the reviews and the info on this forum about difficulty getting coverage when you need it but at this point, since it's already in our contract, I need to choose the "best" of the "worst" and select a company. I've looked online at reviews and wanted to ask if anyone has decent experiences with these?

Two Ten Home Warranty
American Home Shield
HMS Home Warranty
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