When I purchased my house as a short sale, I inherited a home warranty. I would not have purchased this myself, but I received it as a gift. What the heck! I figured I would check it out. The original policy cost $365 and I paid $105 to upgrade it to include my refrigerator, washer, and dryer. Therefore, the one year cost of the warranty was $470. (Not all warranties are worth buying).
When I got my warranty paperwork, it came as a one page document that was covered on both sides with the smallest print permissible on a legal document with more exceptions than inclusions. Bad sign. I discovered one of the rules of this warranty is that I will pay $55 for each type of service call (plumber, electrician, appliance repair, etc.) So, what happened when I called the service after discovering an inch of water under my kitchen sink?
The GOOD news:
- I was able to reach a REAL person at the warranty company at 1:00 am. They gave me a claim number and a contractor to call. But, I couldn’t call to make an appointment until later in the morning.
- Besides the leaking kitchen sink, I had several small items that needed plumbing attention. I put them all on the claim so that the contractor could look at every one. Each problem must be listed in order for the repairman to take care of it. You can not say to the repairman, “Oh, by the way, this also needs to be looked at.”It has to be on the list.
- I was able to get two leaky toilets and a stubborn faucet attended to, small jobs that my husband could have done (love that Handy Hubby), but it was nice to have someone else do it and pay for the parts.
The BAD news:
- Any kind of filter system was NOT covered. The plumber could not TOUCH anything having to do with the filter system. I mean, really, he was not allowed to touch it.
- The plumber said he could not fix my faucet. He tightened it up, but said it would not hold. He said it was installed wrong, but because the filter system was part of the installation, there was nothing he could do about it.
- My warranty covered replacement with a “Chrome Builders Standard” faucet. What is that? It’s a junky plastic faucet that was not long enough to fit my kitchen sink.
- Since I didn’t want their faucet, I could buy my own faucet and they would replace it for $165. WHAT??? Yep, you heard right. If I didn’t want their faucet (which was unworkable) I had to buy my own and then pay $165 to have them install it.
- The warranty company said that they would give me a $100 cash-out if I wanted to buy my own faucet and pay to have it installed. I pointed out that it was going to cost me $165 just to install the faucet.
- When I inquired if using cash-out would void my warranty, a rep told me it would not AS LONG AS I used a licensed contractor and sent them proof of installation. Otherwise, my faucet would become an exclusion on my contract. This means that if my Handy Hubby changes the faucet (cost = $0), then my faucet is no longer covered. I have to pay $165 to a contractor to install my faucet for it to be covered.
So, dear readers, what do I do? What have you done with warranties gone wrong? Help me figure this one out.