When you buy a home in Berks County, you'll need to be able to take care of it as the years go on. One way that you can make sure that your home's systems and appliances are kept up is through a home warranty. Yet home warranties are not necessarily the right choice for every home owner. Here are some pros and cons to help you decide if buying a home warranty is the right choice for you.

What is a home warranty?

A home warranty is not the same as insurance. Insurance will protect you if there's any damage to your home from something like a fire or windstorm.

A home warranty, on the other hand, is a policy that protects your home's major appliances and systems as they age. It's there to save you money when your water heater breaks unexpectedly or your dishwasher suddenly stops working.

How a home warranty works

A home warranty does have one similarity to insurance in that you pay an annual premium. Usually, homes of up to 5,000 sq feet in size are covered under the standard warranty. Above that, you have to pay for additional coverage.

If something that's covered by the warranty breaks down, you pay a deductible that will range from $50-$125 to have the item fixed or replaced.

The benefits of a home warranty

With a home warranty, you're paying for peace of mind. If something expensive breaks, it will get fixed by a professional or replaced. So for people who aren't handy with a tool, a warranty is a good idea. It can also be beneficial to new homeowners who may not be as familiar with how their new home's systems work.

Having a home warranty also helps avoid unexpected costs, making it easier to budget your finances. You'll know what your premium costs upfront and you'll know what your deductible is for any repairs that are covered under the warranty, making it much easier to handle the unexpected.

The drawbacks of a home warranty

Not everything in your home is covered by a home warranty. This is why you need to go over the details to make sure the right items are covered.

However, one major pain point of most warranties is that they won't cover items that have not been properly maintained. This is a very subjective clause, and often leads to disputes with the warranty company. This is particularly the case if the previous owner did not take care of the appliance and the new homeowner is left hanging.

Another issue, for some, is that each year money is paid upfront under the assumption that repairs will eventually need to be made. However, that may or may not be the case. Some years, everything may work fine, but you'll have paid the premium, regardless.

Making the decision

A home warranty certainly can be a help for some of your maintenance issues, but it's not the perfect solution. In the end, you're the one who needs to decide if it's right for your home.

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