1st American offers a range of products and services to help home owners cover the cost of unexpected replacements or repairs. As with all forms of insurance, the major considerations for choosing the appropriate policy rest with your specific vulnerabilities and the balancing of risk and cost. Owning a home can be fraught with enormous expenses that can occur be triggered at unpredictable times. These are usually expenses that can’t be put off until it is financially convenient.

The Range of Options

Home warranties definitely vary in what types of systems they cover. For example, First American describes rates for single family dwellings under 5000 square feet and has several different levels of coverage. The first level is called basic, but includes most household appliances and some fixtures, including ceiling fans.  The second level of coverage includes the basic level plus heating, electrical, duct and plumbing systems as well as some additional fixtures like toilets and sump pumps. This company also offers optional coverages for an extra refrigerator ($4); pool systems, etc. One feature of First American Home Warranty is that regardless of the age of the appliance or system, if it cannot be repaired it will be replaced.

Some Cautionary Notes

Several qualities about First American warranties do deserve more scrutiny. For example, this service is purchased on a yearly basis, which means the premium is never locked in for more than a year. Secondly, you must use their technicians and service providers when using their warranty. So if you do not live near a large city you may have a hard to finding a service provider or have to wait longer for service. It is unclear at what point they will replace rather than repair your systems. Even their customer service reviews on their website say things like “it only took a few days to get service” There does not seem to be a guarantee that service will be provided quickly or what happens if a delay of service causes damage to uncovered parts of your dwelling.