Prepared by Staff

Q. What is a homeowner’s warranty and what does it cover?

A. Home warranties are service contracts that cover the costs to repair or replace a broken appliance or plumbing system over and above the service fee. They do not, however, cover preexisting problems.

If the appliance works on the day of closing, it’s covered. Otherwise, it’s not. (Don’t confuse this type of warranty with new construction home warranties for brand-new homes.)

Home warranties don’t cover everything in your home. Most important, they do not cover any structural problems, such as a crack in the basement or a leaky roof.

Instead home warranties are designed to cover those appliances that are in working condition when the home is sold. The typical policy covers the furnace, air-conditioning, kitchen appliances, water heater, trash compactor, electrical system (fuses and interior wiring), and interior plumbing.

For an additional fee, the home warranty will cover things like your swimming pool.

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