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Old 05-31-2018, 08:23 PM
 
Location: Arlington
186 posts, read 104,865 times
Reputation: 323

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I'll keep this simple - Are they really worth it?

After a year and a half with American Home Shield, and paying almost all of a recent repair to a high efficiency heat/air unit, I'm having serious doubts. On said repair, all they covered was the cost of some of
the freon.

I'd be interested to hear from others on this. Are there other companies that you like better? Is there a trick to dealing with these companies?

AHS is hard to deal with due to having to go through Indian agents. There's almost always a communication problem, and they have no power to make any decisions. They seemed to be chained to a script they have to follow for everything, which creates difficulties on top of difficulties.
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Old 05-31-2018, 09:08 PM
 
Location: Grapevine, Texas
10,564 posts, read 22,480,151 times
Reputation: 8385
We had AHS for one year (purchased by seller when we bought our house). When a part went bad on our AC unit, the part was under warranty, so all we would have to pay was the labor. But the only contractor AHS would pay for was not certified to do warranty work on our brand of AC unit, so using them would have voided our warranty. We ended up paying for the labor on our own, and we didn't renew the AHS when it expired.
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Old 06-01-2018, 06:44 PM
 
Location: Dallas/Ft. Worth, TX
2,308 posts, read 6,799,681 times
Reputation: 3912
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gone Again View Post
I'll keep this simple - Are they really worth it?

After a year and a half with American Home Shield, and paying almost all of a recent repair to a high efficiency heat/air unit, I'm having serious doubts. On said repair, all they covered was the cost of some of
the freon.

I'd be interested to hear from others on this. Are there other companies that you like better? Is there a trick to dealing with these companies?

AHS is hard to deal with due to having to go through Indian agents. There's almost always a communication problem, and they have no power to make any decisions. They seemed to be chained to a script they have to follow for everything, which creates difficulties on top of difficulties.

When you purchase an existing home they are somewhat peace of mind for the first year or two if you extend it. However you really need to read through their warranty coverage and make sure it is even worth it. Many exclude or significantly reduce any coverages for systems like HVAC that are 10 or more years old. They tend to have other exclusions as well that can cost you rather than benefit you. Also don't bother trying to cover smaller things like dishwashers, etc., unless they are really high end and expensive, since many times it may be cheaper or better just to replace it than warrant it and deal with any hassles.
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Old 06-01-2018, 08:50 PM
 
Location: Arlington
186 posts, read 104,865 times
Reputation: 323
"When you purchase an existing home they are somewhat peace of mind for the first year or two if you extend it. However you really need to read through their warranty coverage and make sure it is even worth it. Many exclude or significantly reduce any coverages for systems like HVAC that are 10 or more years old. They tend to have other exclusions as well that can cost you rather than benefit you. Also don't bother trying to cover smaller things like dishwashers, etc., unless they are really high end and expensive, since many times it may be cheaper or better just to replace it than warrant it and deal with any hassles"

Our unit is five years old. Before we could finish getting the problem resolved, AHS told us that our coverage for HVAC for the year was used up. They might cover the cost of a tech coming out (I'm unsure of this, even after talking with them on the phone about this) but they won't cover labor, freon or non-warrantied parts.
Our cost even with AHS covering whatever they did, still came to 1100.

I'm going to shop around. I have an uncle and a sister who've used them for their rental homes, and have said that we're better off pocketing the monthly charge and using what we save from that to cover emergencies and repairs. I'm hoping maybe there is simply a better company.

But yes, you're right. It was primarily peace of mind this first year and a half.
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Old 06-02-2018, 05:34 PM
 
Location: Texas
205 posts, read 166,669 times
Reputation: 428
I have usually done them for the first year of a house. I had one house were it really paid off and ended up with them spending more money than the cost of the coverage. Usually though the seller pays for it. In the house we just bought, we didn't ask the seller to pay for it but we went ahead and paid for it ourselves. We plan to keep it for one year. I recognize the limitations though. Also once I've been in the house for a year I usually drop it.
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Old 06-03-2018, 04:08 PM
 
Location: Arlington
186 posts, read 104,865 times
Reputation: 323
Quote:
Originally Posted by Koshka2 View Post
I have usually done them for the first year of a house. I had one house were it really paid off and ended up with them spending more money than the cost of the coverage. Usually though the seller pays for it. In the house we just bought, we didn't ask the seller to pay for it but we went ahead and paid for it ourselves. We plan to keep it for one year. I recognize the limitations though. Also once I've been in the house for a year I usually drop it.
Who were you using in the instance of the company spending more money than the cost of coverage?

Also, why one year than drop? It doesn't seem that the first year is necessarily when the problems would show up. It's been in our second year when we're having issues crop up.
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Old 06-03-2018, 11:35 PM
 
Location: Texas
205 posts, read 166,669 times
Reputation: 428
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gone Again View Post
Who were you using in the instance of the company spending more money than the cost of coverage?

Also, why one year than drop? It doesn't seem that the first year is necessarily when the problems would show up. It's been in our second year when we're having issues crop up.
It was American Home Shield. The reason we've usually done it one year is for two reasons. First, is that in most instances the seller paid for the home warranty as pretty much a matter of course so there was no reason not to do it.

We just bought a house where the seller didn't pay for it and we did. I've decided to cancel though (you can cancel within the first 30 days and get your money back if you have had no claims). The logic we had in buying it is that when you first buy a house you may have surprises and you don't really know that much about the house. I mean, sure, we had an inspection but there is a lot that an inspection won't cover and so you can be surprised. Our thought was that we could easily cover one surprise out of pocket but it would nice to have the warranty in case there was more than one surprise.

But - reflecting on it I've decided to cancel. I remember a home warranty I had on a house before our last house. (it wasn't AHS). The people that they sent to do work sometimes weren't the best. They sent out one plumber who did some work and couldn't solve the problem so he just basically left -- leaving the toilet just loose in the bathroom so it was totally unusable (he didn't tell us he didn't reseal it -- we thought he did until we went to use it). And that is one problem with home warranties. They may pick a good company to do repairs. But, they may not. And, there wasn't a lot of recourse.

Also, if you carefully read the AHS home warranty there are a lot of limitations. Things that aren't covered or have limited coverage.

I also went and read some of the reviews and the types of problems people have had. The bottom line is that I really want to have more control and ability to hire who does work on my house. In the home warranty that worked out well for us, the company sent out a competent company to do the repair work. And, they did fine. And the cost of the work they did exceed the cost of the premium so it worked out well.

But - it was relatively simply work and on a component that wasn't that expensive to fix. It wasn't like they needed to replace the HVAC system. And, if they did need to replace a major component do I really want them calling the shots? Probably not. Given the limits on specific types of repairs I just decided the potential benefit wasn't worth giving up my ability to choose who I want to do the work and my ability to choose what work is done.
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Old 06-05-2018, 03:39 PM
 
Location: Arlington
186 posts, read 104,865 times
Reputation: 323
Quote:
Originally Posted by Koshka2 View Post
It was American Home Shield. The reason we've usually done it one year is for two reasons. First, is that in most instances the seller paid for the home warranty as pretty much a matter of course so there was no reason not to do it.

We just bought a house where the seller didn't pay for it and we did. I've decided to cancel though (you can cancel within the first 30 days and get your money back if you have had no claims). The logic we had in buying it is that when you first buy a house you may have surprises and you don't really know that much about the house. I mean, sure, we had an inspection but there is a lot that an inspection won't cover and so you can be surprised. Our thought was that we could easily cover one surprise out of pocket but it would nice to have the warranty in case there was more than one surprise.

But - reflecting on it I've decided to cancel. I remember a home warranty I had on a house before our last house. (it wasn't AHS). The people that they sent to do work sometimes weren't the best. They sent out one plumber who did some work and couldn't solve the problem so he just basically left -- leaving the toilet just loose in the bathroom so it was totally unusable (he didn't tell us he didn't reseal it -- we thought he did until we went to use it). And that is one problem with home warranties. They may pick a good company to do repairs. But, they may not. And, there wasn't a lot of recourse.

Also, if you carefully read the AHS home warranty there are a lot of limitations. Things that aren't covered or have limited coverage.

I also went and read some of the reviews and the types of problems people have had. The bottom line is that I really want to have more control and ability to hire who does work on my house. In the home warranty that worked out well for us, the company sent out a competent company to do the repair work. And, they did fine. And the cost of the work they did exceed the cost of the premium so it worked out well.

But - it was relatively simply work and on a component that wasn't that expensive to fix. It wasn't like they needed to replace the HVAC system. And, if they did need to replace a major component do I really want them calling the shots? Probably not. Given the limits on specific types of repairs I just decided the potential benefit wasn't worth giving up my ability to choose who I want to do the work and my ability to choose what work is done.
You make some excellent points about being able to control who and what. Although the flip side to that can be something such as what we encountered in the last two weeks. We didn't want to bother with calling AHS for HVAC work. We found someone highly rated (all five star reviews) and had him come out. The down side is that he doesn't have a solid grasp on high efficiency HVAC. He said he felt he was 90% sure it was a leaking valve. But we didn't want to spend 2000.00 on a 90% sure. We told him so, and that we wanted to call the company that AHS had sent out to do previous work, as they knew our system and were decent enough to deal with (once they quit sending out their guy who didn't know a thing about high efficiency units). The 90% sure person said he wouldn't charge us for his time, the trip, not a thing at all. Wow. That's beyond merely decent.

I think we're going to go with the idea of setting aside the 60.00 a month into an emergency fund instead of paying AHS. We didn't sign a contract, so hopefully we can cancel without a big battle.
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