Home warranties are service contracts that cover the repair or replacement of major home systems and appliances that break down due to normal wear and tear. They can provide peace of mind and save you money on unexpected expenses. However, not all home warranty companies are created equal. In this article, we will review one of the most popular and trusted home warranty providers in the U.S.: American Home Shield (AHS).
What Does American Home Shield Offer?
American Home Shield offers three home warranty plans, one that covers major systems, one combination system and appliance plan, and one premium plan that covers 23 home systems and appliances. The plans are:
- ShieldSilver™: This plan covers 14 essential home systems, such as heating, air conditioning, electrical, plumbing, water heaters, garbage disposals, and more.
- ShieldGold™: This plan covers everything in ShieldSilver™, plus 8 major appliances, such as refrigerators, ovens, dishwashers, washers, dryers, and more.
- ShieldPlatinum™: This plan covers everything in ShieldGold™, plus roof leak repair, unlimited air conditioner and heating refrigerant, code violations up to $250 per incident, permits up to $250 per incident, and more.
You can also customize your plan with additional coverage for items like pools, spas, septic pumps, well pumps, guest units, electronics, and more. AHS allows you to choose your own service fee from $75 to $125 per service request. The higher the service fee, the lower the monthly or annual premium.
How Does American Home Shield Work?
When your covered system or appliance breaks down due to normal wear and tear, you can request service online or by phone 24/7. AHS will assign a qualified local contractor from its network of over 17,000 professionals to diagnose and fix the problem. You will pay the service fee directly to the contractor at the time of service. AHS will pay for the repair or replacement of your covered item up to the limits of your contract. If your item cannot be repaired or replaced, AHS will offer you a cash payout option.
AHS offers a 30-day workmanship guarantee on all repairs. If the same problem occurs within 30 days of service, AHS will send another contractor at no additional cost to you. AHS also has a no-age limit policy on covered items. This means that AHS will cover your systems and appliances regardless of how old they are or how long you have owned them.
What Are the Benefits of American Home Shield?
American Home Shield is one of the oldest and largest home warranty companies in the U.S., with over 50 years of experience and more than 1.8 million customers. It has an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau and a 4-star rating from Trustpilot. Some of the benefits of choosing AHS are:
- Comprehensive coverage: AHS covers up to 23 home systems and appliances that other companies may not cover or charge extra for. For example, AHS covers roof leak repair in its ShieldPlatinum™ plan, while most other companies exclude it or charge an additional fee for it.
- Flexible plans: AHS allows you to choose the plan that best suits your needs and budget. You can also add optional coverage for items that are not included in the standard plans. You can also choose your own service fee from $75 to $125 per service request.
- Reliable service: AHS has a large network of over 17,000 screened and licensed contractors who can provide quality service in a timely manner. AHS also offers a 30-day workmanship guarantee on all repairs and a cash payout option if your item cannot be repaired or replaced.
- Member perks: AHS members enjoy discounts on new appliances and services like pre-season HVAC maintenance, tech set-up and installation, and more.
What Are the Drawbacks of American Home Shield?
No home warranty company is perfect, and American Home Shield is no exception. Some of the drawbacks of choosing AHS are:
- Coverage limits: AHS has limits on how much it will pay for each covered item per contract term. For example, AHS will pay up to $3,000 per covered item for systems and up to $1,500 per covered item for appliances. If your repair or replacement exceeds these limits, you will have to pay the difference out of pocket.
- Service fees: AHS charges a service fee for each service request you make. The service fee ranges from $75 to $125 depending on your choice. This means that if you have multiple issues with different items at the same time, you will have to pay multiple service fees.
- Contract terms: AHS requires a 12-month contract for its home warranty plans. If you want to cancel your contract before the term ends, you may have to pay a cancellation fee of up to $50. AHS also reserves the right to increase your premium or change your coverage at the time of renewal.
American Home Shield is a reputable and reliable home warranty company that offers comprehensive and flexible plans for homeowners. It covers up to 23 home systems and appliances that may break down due to normal wear and tear. It also has a large network of qualified contractors who can provide quality service and a 30-day workmanship guarantee. However, AHS also has some drawbacks, such as coverage limits, service fees, and contract terms. Therefore, before you sign up for an AHS home warranty plan, you should read the contract carefully and compare it with other options to make sure it meets your needs and expectations.