What is a home buyer’s warranty?

A home buyer’s warranty is a service agreement that covers some repairs on certain appliances and systems when someone buys a house. New homeowners can get them for existing houses and new construction. Who pays for the home warranty depends on the real estate contract.

What is a home buyer’s warranty?

When buying a house, most people rely on home inspections to tell them the condition of the house’s appliances or systems, such as the air conditioner

Have a home inspection coming up? It’s good to know the do’s and don’ts of a home inspection, including if you should be there with the inspector and how to use the inspection to negotiate a better price.

Some companies offer plans that are only for home buyers or sellers and include coverage that is more likely to be relevant for new homeowners or sellers who are worried about items breaking down while their houses are on the market.

Another option for homebuyers who are purchasing a home with older appliances or systems is to get a home warranty. This can help the new homeowners pay for repairs to certain items if they break down or malfunction after they purchase a house.

What does a home buyer’s warranty cover?

A home buyer’s warranty usually covers repairs or replacements for built-in appliances, major home systems or both. For example, some home warranty companies have plans only for kitchen appliances, sometimes including washer and dryer sets, as well as plans that only cover systems. But many companies have comprehensive plans that offer combined coverage of some or many systems and appliances.

The coverage depends on the plan you or a seller choose to purchase. The better the coverage, the more expensive the plan.

Should you get a home buyer’s warranty on a new construction? Most home warranties don’t cover repairs to appliances and systems that are under manufacturer warranties. If you’re buying a new house with items that will be covered by existing warranties, a home buyer’s warranty is unlikely to save you any money during the first year.

How much does a home buyer’s warranty cost?

A home buyer’s warranty can cost about $20 to around $120 per month. The price generally depends on the company, the plan, any supplementary coverage and your location.

Who pays for a home buyer’s warranty?

  • Some sellers offer to pay for a home buyer’s warranty to give potential buyers peace of mind about the house’s appliances and systems. Purchasing a house with a home warranty means the new homeowners will have coverage if an included item breaks down during the first year of owning the house. 

  • Real estate agents can also pay for a home warranty for their clients if a seller won’t pay for one.

  • Home buyers can purchase their own home warranties if a seller refuses to include one in the real estate contract.

4 tips for getting a home buyer’s warranty

  1. Ask for a home warranty plan. You can ask the seller to pay for a home warranty plan if they don’t offer to buy one. They might refuse to do it, but it can be a negotiating point if the systems and appliances in the house are older.

  2. Pay attention to the plan’s coverage. Most home warranty providers have multiple plans that include coverage for different systems and appliances. If someone else is purchasing a home warranty for you, look at the plan’s coverage to ensure it includes everything you want covered. 

  3. Shop around. If a home seller agrees to pay for a home buyer’s warranty, they might agree to pay a certain amount instead of picking a certain plan. If that’s the case, compare plans to see what coverage you can get for what the sellers are paying.

  4. Verify if a plan can be transferred. If a seller says they’ll transfer their existing home warranty to the buyer, ask to see the plan’s coverage and the service agreement. Although many companies allow customers to transfer their home warranties, you don’t want to find out after purchasing the house that the warranty doesn’t transfer.

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