Many sellers will include a home warranty as part of their “package” to attract buyers.  However, if a home does not come with a home warranty already in place, the Arizona contract to purchase a resale home forces the questions:  Do I want a home warranty?  From what company?  Am I going to ask the seller to pay for it, or will I?

Increasingly, I have seen many buyers opt out of purchasing the warranty.  And I get it.  Many people have had bad luck with them in the past, or consider them too expensive (a BASIC plan will run about $500 for the first year with additional fees for each call).   Some folks consider themselves to be handy enough to fix just about anything that could go wrong and others don’t want to be tied down to one entity for service.

All valid concerns.  But, there may be equally significant reasons to consider making a home warranty part of the negotiations for the home sale:

  • There are very few days in a year that a home inspector can check both the heating and the cooling units.  In the summer, the air conditioning can be checked and in the winter you will get a report on the heat.  But, in off seasons, it is potentially damaging to the units to test them.  In other words, if your home is inspected in July, you are not going to know if the heat works until you try and turn it on in January.  A home warranty could potentially be very helpful in that situation!
  • Moving is stressful enough.  Moving is stressful.  Period.  No way around it.  When I moved in to PebbleCreek and a had a house full of people helping me (not to mention the guy installing cabinets), my air conditioning went.  Having the home warranty in place meant that I had someone to call.  I wasn’t aimlessly poring over the internet trying to figure out who did repairs in my neighborhood – the home warranty folks had someone to my home within hours and the air conditioning was functioning again.  One less thing to worry about.
  • Moving is Expensive.  Even if you get the greatest deal of all time on your home, relocating is expensive: movers, storage, interim housing… it all adds up.  Having a home warranty in place at least for the first year minimizes the potential for large unexpected repair costs.
  • Appliances are becoming mini-computers.   Today’s appliances are increasingly electronic with lots of fun gadgets that can – and eventually will – break.

And some last tips…   if you decide a home warranty is a good idea for you, read the small print.  Refrigerators, for example, are often not covered in the basic plans.  They can be added…  and it might be a good idea to do so.  ALSO… some of the warranty companies include services like re-keying the house, cleaning the windows or shampooing the carpet – perhaps those services would be helpful to you.

Here are some links to home warranty companies that are active in Arizona.   You would find others online as well.