Flashback: Circa 2006, I said to myself, "Self, our home warranty is an absolutely useless waste of money. Why on earth did we pay for it? I'm NEVER going to waste my money on another home warranty again."
Every time anything went wrong in our last house, I dutifully called the home warranty company.
Every time I called the home warranty company, they dutifully cited article blah, section blah blah, paragraph blah blah blah, sub-paragraph blah blah blah blah that CLEARLY states that [insert name of your household casualty here] is NOT covered by the home warranty. So sorry. Thank you for playing. Buh-bye. (Whew! Dodged another sucker actually trying to get us to pay for something.)
Case in Point #1: The vent from our clothes dryer went into the wall in between the laundry room and the first floor half bathroom, then down through the floor and out through the back of the house under our back deck. Well, one day, I noticed water dripping down the bathroom wall from the electrical outlet on the wall next to the sink.
Water and electricity don't tend to go well together ya know?
I would dare say they're a dangerous combination. As I got closer to inspect the scene of the casualty and identify the source of this "controlled leak," I was alarmed to discover hot, damp air gushing from around the edges of the electrical outlet. Somewhere in the wall, the dryer vent had ruptured and was venting the exhaust from the dryer into the wall, and it had found an outlet in the adjacent bathroom (pun intended).
I (foolishly) thought that the purpose of a home warranty was to pay for things that break in your home and were beyond your capability to repair. I called the home warranty company, and... copy and paste the conversation above - not covered by the warranty.
This happened like FIVE times in the two years I lived in our previous house here in Virginia (not the dryer venting through the bathroom electrical outlet mind you, but stuff braking that I thought should be covered by the home warranty.)
The home warranty covered us ONCE! They fixed the broken handle on the dishwasher. Whoopie.
Fast forward a smidge over two years.
We're in the process of buying our house in Virginia, and I told the realtor that our last home warranty was useless and I didn't want to waste our money on it. Our realtor assures us that this is a GOOD home warranty and worth the money, and my memory has experienced a typical exponential decay on WHY I believed home warranties were useless.
Now, three months later, our humidifier isn't working.
My wife called the home warranty company.
They cited article blah, section blah blah, paragraph blah blah blah, sub-paragraph blah blah blah blah that CLEARLY states that [insert name of your household casualty here] is NOT covered by the home warranty. So sorry. Thank you for playing. Buh-bye. (Whew!)
Note to self: NEVER EVER BUY ANOTHER HOME WARRANTY.
I should demand my money back.
I would be interested to see a Consumer Reports study on home warranties. Consumer Reports had a pretty interesting article on extended warranties on other items.
"Extended warranties are notoriously bad deals for the consumer but retailers push hard to get you to buy them, or service plans, because they're cash cows. We tell you why in most cases, you don't need an extended warranty."There's another important decision at hand that dovetails with this story, but I'm going to save that for another blog post.