Homeowner Tips

What Every Homeowner Should Know About Home Warranties

Pros and Cons

For most people, a home warranty offers peace of mind in the instances of unforeseen problems. A home warranty can also reduce the frustration that often comes with attempting to find the best service company for the problem. Read on for tips on how to determine if a home warranty is right for you. 

Home warranties are designed to protect homeowners from unexpected repair costs for major appliances. Generally speaking, home warranties are ideal for homes with appliances over four years old. Warranties for new homes are supplied by builders and will typically cover any structural defects for up to a decade. Other items such as air conditioners, drywall, paint, plumbing, and electrical work may be covered anywhere from six months to two years.

For existing homes, warranty coverage options vary but include things such as interior plumbing, heating, electrical systems, water heaters, dishwashers, stoves, washer/dryers, refrigerators, air conditioners, garage door openers, pool equipment, garbage disposals and spa equipment.

Be cautious: Not all home warranties are beneficial; there are a number of limitations and exclusions which may apply. Claims have been denied because the company says the problem was pre-existing or because the consumer couldn’t prove that the broken item was properly maintained.

Make sure to research top companies with the most reliable and trustworthy track records. 

Home warranty research tips: 

  • The Better Business Bureau recommends that consumers verify a company’s licensing by contacting your state’s real estate commission.
  • Read documents thoroughly. Some providers hide their exclusions and limitations in the fine print. Read every word of the contract and understand the pros and...

Home Maintenance In The Fall: Whether You're Listing This Winter or Want To Keep Property Value Up

Fall is a popular and ideal time for home maintenance. It can also be daunting for many homeowners to think about seasonal projects that help keep up their property values. But many things can be done without having to hire someone to do it. Here are some projects, whether you're getting your home ready to list this winter or just want to keep the value up.

Roofs. The importance of a secure roof can’t be stressed enough. Roofing issues can be complicated and expensive to fix when allowed to linger too long. Simply walking the property and looking for any obvious problems before the weather prohibits repair is always a good idea. If a problem is discovered, homeowners should have their roofs inspected by a professional as soon as possible.

Windows and doors. Don’t wait until it’s too cold out to realize how much air drafts can hike up heating bills. Seal leaky windows with spray foam, caulk or weather stripping. A tip to make sure your weather stripping is doing its job: close your door/window and guide a lit candle along the stripping. If the flame flickers at any point, you know you have an air leak.

gutter leaves

Gutters and downspouts. Gutters are your roof’s drainage system. Gutters account for thousands of gallons of water being diverted from your home’s exterior and foundation. A pile of debris in your gutters can mean water in your basement. Inspect and clean and consider a mesh guard to keep debris out. 

Lawn health. If leaves are left on the yard for extended periods of time, they can kill the grass. To keep lawns and soil healthy, mulch the leaves and spread them around. 

Chimneys. As temperatures drop, fireplaces...