What is a Home Warranty

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American Home Shield® Home Warranty


#1 Home Warranty Company with more than 2 Million Members

A home warranty is a year-long, renewable home service plan that keeps you protected should a covered breakdown occur. A home warranty helps cut the cost to repair or replace many of the systems and appliances in your home and complements your homeowners insurance by protecting things that your insurance doesn’t.

What is a home warranty plan?

A home warranty plan is the specific coverage you select for your household and budget needs. American Home Shield’s home warranty service plans cover things like home appliances, electrical, plumbing, heating, and A/C systems. Need more coverage? No problem. Our home warranty services can also include add-ons like pool and spa coverage, roof leak coverage, electronics protection, septic pump coverage, and more.

If you’re still wondering, “What is a home warranty policy, and do I really need it?”—well, we think it’s one of the best things you can do as a homeowner to protect your home. Shop our plans and find the coverage that best fits your budget and household.

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What is included in a home warranty service plan?

We believe that the items that keep your house running smoothly should be covered. We also realize that no two homes are alike, which is why we offer three plans with various coverage as part of our home warranty services.

American Home Shield base plans include coverage for most kitchen and laundry appliances, parts of plumbing and electrical systems, and heating and cooling systems—regardless of their ages. Our ShieldPlatinum™ base plan is the most comprehensive plan, covering roof leak repairs, a free HVAC tune-up, unlimited A/C refrigerant, and coverage for code violations and permits. Once you purchase a plan, you can select add-ons to cover items unique to your home.

Here’s what else our home warranty service plans include:

  • A trusted, qualified service technician to diagnose the issue. Depending on their diagnosis, we’ll repair or replace the covered item (with one of equal value).
  • 5-star customer service and communication. Our professional, friendly customer service team responds to your questions and resolves issues quickly. Reach out to us 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
  • A Trade Service Call Fee that you pick. You’ll need to pay a fee each time you request service, but you decide the price! The great thing is, if your issue is covered, that’s the only price you’ll pay.

How does a home warranty work?

When one of your covered appliances or systems stops working properly (like a broken A/C, a roof leak, or a doorbell that doesn’t work), start a service request through your member account or by phone at 866.545.0139. (This is when you’ll pay your Trade Service Call Fee.) Then, we send out a service technician to your home to diagnose the issue. If it’s covered under your home warranty service plan, great! We’ll have the contractor repair or replace the item quickly so your home can get back up and running again.

Step-by-step guide to how repairs work

Once you’re covered with an American Home Shield warranty, you don’t have to worry should you need us. The repair process is straightforward and hassle-free. Here’s how it works:

1. Start a request online or by phone

When a covered item in your house warranty breaks or malfunctions, you can request service online or by calling us. Day or night, we’re here for you. Pay your set Trade Service Call Fee when you request service, and you’re all set. Log into MyAccount to easily check the status of your request.

2. We assign a professional contractor

We assign a qualified local contractor from our network to diagnose your covered item and offer a solution. Our network of 17,000 qualified contractors in 49 states covers every appliance and system we service.

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3. We cover the repair

Based on the contractor's diagnosis, we'll determine whether your problem is covered by your home warranty. If it is covered, the contractor will repair or replace your covered item (subject to limitations and exclusions).

4. We make sure your issue is resolved

You'll get a follow-up email to make sure your problem was resolved to your satisfaction. With our 30-day workmanship guarantee, if you have an issue with your completed repair within 30 days of service, we’ll send a contractor out at no additional cost.

So, how do I get started

Once you’re covered with an American Home Shield warranty, you don’t have to worry should you need us. The repair process is straightforward and hassle-free. Here’s how it works:

1. Choose your coverage. Our home warranty plans are designed with your household and budget in mind. Here are the basics:

  • ShieldPlatinum Plan™ : Our most comprehensive plan covers parts of your home’s 23 essential systems and appliances, plus roof leak repairs and a free HVAC tune-up* before the seasonal rush. It also includes higher limits on your covered items. *The HVAC tune-up service is not available in Hawaii.
  • ShieldGold Plan™ : Our most popular plan provides comprehensive coverage for parts of your home’s 23 essential systems and appliances.
  • ShieldSilver Plan™ : Our most basic plan offers coverage for parts of the 14 major systems that keep your home running smoothly.

2. Set your Trade Service Call fee. Choose your price—it’s as easy as that. This is the fee you’ll pay, by trade type (electrical, plumbing, appliance, etc.), each time you request service. If the issue is covered by your plan, it’s the only price you’ll pay to complete the repair or replacement.

3. Request a service. Appliances don’t have business hours, so we don’t either. Call us or go online 24/7 to request service.

4. We assign a pro. We’ll send a qualified contractor to your door to assess the issue and propose a solution. If the problem is covered, the contractor will repair or replace the covered item.

Fees Explained

We believe transparency is key, so we make sure every penny you pay is fully explained. Here are some of the fees that will be included in your American Home Shield warranty:

Trade Service Call Fee: You'll pay a Trade Service Call Fee for each trade professional (plumber, electrician, etc.) who comes to your home to provide service. You get to choose the amount (either $75, $100, or $125, plus sales tax where applicable) when you purchase your home warranty service plan.

Depending on your plan, some coverage limits or exclusions may apply. For full coverage details, view our sample contract.

Plan Payments: American Home Shield offers several home warranty plans, which vary in cost and coverage. Compare home warranty plans to determine which plan is best for your household and your wallet.

How to get a home warranty

Managing a household can be challenging, but getting an American Home Shield® home warranty is easy. Take a look at our home warranty service plans and choose the coverage that best suits your home. Once you’ve decided on the best plan for your household, you’ll need to enter your address and zip code to make sure you get the most accurate pricing for where you live. We’ll contact you with prices and other important info, and you can set up your member account in minutes!

How soon can you use a home warranty after purchase?

Once you purchase a plan, you can start using your home warranty after the 30-day waiting period. After that time frame, you can start requesting home warranty services through your member account or by giving us a call. Learn more about why AHS has a waiting period for new members.

We hope we’ve answered your questions about what is a home warranty, but for more information, see our home warranty page.

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