Landlords: Hit or skip? Home warranty renewal $500/yr: $60 deductible each time...

Submitted by flu on January 7, 2013 - 7:29pm
Submitted by flu on January 7, 2013 - 7:33pm.

Landlords,

What do you think about extending a home warranty that was purchased on your behalf at escrow for a rental?

The warranty extension would be about $500/year or $44/month..

It would cover plumbing, electrical, water heater, oven, stove, plumbing stoppages, exhaust fans, dishwasher, pest control, garbage disposal....

Excluded would be central A/C, washer/driver/fridge....

There is a $60 deductible per service call.

In the past, I would say skip.

Submitted by SK in CV on January 7, 2013 - 7:38pm.

My experience with these policies is that getting them to pay for anything is a pain in the ass. That said, if you're prepared to fight, they can pay off. Over the years I've got at least a 5x return on my money. But it was never easy.

Submitted by paramount on January 7, 2013 - 9:16pm.

I have found that the default position of these scam insurance companies is to deny, and then see if the insured/covered party will fight.

Keep in mind these scum bags have a lot of experience battling with pissed consumers.

Home warranty/insurance companies are highly unethical in my experience.

SKIP.

Submitted by Hatfield on January 7, 2013 - 10:51pm.

I'd have to agree. My first house came with one of these. They did pay a claim on a drain clearing, but refused to pay a claim on an appliance failure. I did not renew. I suppose you could probably take them to small claims court, maybe even get a default judgement, but you know, life is short and I think their business model is to just wear you down.

Submitted by ocrenter on January 8, 2013 - 8:39am.

From what I heard, they will typically use the cheapest replacement parts and try to deny claims as much as they can, or have very strict rules about what they can do.

For example, very old pool equipment needs to be replaced. Homeowner insurance agree to replace the pool equipment, but only if the homeowner hires another contractor to bring gas line all the way to the other side of the yard to comply with newer regulation. Private licensed contractor came out and replaced the pool equipment without any of that added requirement.

Submitted by SK in CV on January 8, 2013 - 8:57am.

ocrenter wrote:
From what I heard, they will typically use the cheapest replacement parts and try to deny claims as much as they can, or have very strict rules about what they can do.

For example, very old pool equipment needs to be replaced. Homeowner insurance agree to replace the pool equipment, but only if the homeowner hires another contractor to bring gas line all the way to the other side of the yard to comply with newer regulation. Private licensed contractor came out and replaced the pool equipment without any of that added requirement.

Over the course of the last 20 years or so, I've filed probably 20 claims on various homeowner warranty policies. I've never had them insist on cheap parts. In fact, they've never got involved much in how the repairs were done, only fought about whether or not the claim was covered. Which they almost always deny initially. The policies (which really look more like brochures than insurance policies), are pretty vague and include a lot of limitations. On the other hand, they don't tend to fight very hard to maintain that position. They ultimately paid every single claim I ever made, including some that they probably should not have. (I made a claim on an AC unit, they initially denied the claim because the unit hadn't been professionally maintained. I hired an AC contractor to vacuum out the unit. That became my "proof" of professional maintenance. They then paid to replace the unit.)

Bottom line, if you're not prepared to fight on every claim, regardless of the size, don't buy the policy.

Submitted by SD Realtor on January 8, 2013 - 1:20pm.

Depends on the condition of the property and the type of tenants you have.

Submitted by carlsbadworker on January 8, 2013 - 2:09pm.

Jeez. Another landlord post. Maybe the site should change its name from Econo-Almanac for the Landed Poor to Econo-Almanac for the Land Lords.