Home Repair Insurance
Home Insurance

Definitive Guide to Home Repair Insurance

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Home Repair Insurance Could Save You Thousands of Dollars, But Is It Right for You?

Homeowners insurance is great, but it doesn’t cover the repair of many of the major systems and appliances in your home. This is where home repair insurance can come in handy, saving you thousands of dollars a year as well as a massive headache if your fridge goes on the fritz. 

However, home repair insurance is not for every homeowner or every home. We’re going to take you through insurance for home repairs, so you can decide if this coverage is something you may need.

What Is Home Repair Insurance?

Alternately called home maintenance insurance and home warranty insurance, home repair insurance is a separate policy that provides homeowners protection against costly repairs caused by wear and tears to major appliances and home systems. While this insurance is by no means necessary, some homeowners find it beneficial—especially if they have a home with older appliances. 

For example, if your dryer stops working, your home maintenance insurance would take care of the cost. Your homeowners insurance, on the other hand, would not. 

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What is Covered By Home Repair Insurance?

Because companies that offer this niche coverage aren’t as common as ones that offer more standard types of home insurance, it’s impossible to give you a definitive list of what’s covered by home maintenance insurance. There simply isn’t that much standardization across the board. 

However, here’s a rundown of fairly common coverages so you have an idea of what to expect:

Most major appliances, like washing machines, fridges, washers, dryers, microwaves and dishwashers.
Heating and cooling systems, like furnaces and air-conditioning units.
Wiring systems, like cable and electrical lines.
Indoor plumbing, like pipes, faucets, sinks and drains.

So, home maintenance insurance covers quite a lot, and if you have older appliances, it can definitely be worth your while. Just be aware that home repair policies have limits set at predetermined dollar amounts for different appliances and systems. 

Example: Your provider might have a $1,500 limit on dishwashers, so even if a replacement or repair of your dishwasher is more than that, the extra costs won’t be covered. 

Be sure to read the fine print so you have a handle on what will be paid for, and for what you may have to cover yourself. 

The Cost of Insurance For Home Repairs

As we already mentioned, the policies vary between providers—sometimes by a lot. However, we can make some generalizations to give you an idea of what to expect to pay.

For basic insurance for home repairs that only cover appliance replacement or repair, you are looking at a policy that costs roughly $300/year. Higher-cost plans that cover things like hot tubs and swimming pools will run you upwards of $600/year. 

Many providers that offer insurance for home repairs will allow you to customize your plan, so your premiums might fall somewhere between these price points. 

Something to keep in mind: Home repair insurance only lasts for the year, so you’ll need to renew annually. Also, in addition to the annual premium, there are service fees whenever you request a replacement or repair. 

Fees range from $50 to $125 and requesting a higher per-use fee will mean your annual premiums are lower. Likewise, lower per-use fees will result in higher annual premiums. 

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Who Should Consider Home Repair Insurance?

Home repair insurance isn’t for everyone, but if you’ve been living in your home for a while and have older appliances, it could save you thousands of dollars. 

Here’s how: Insurance for home repairs requires that you keep records of the maintenance of your appliances and systems, otherwise, you may not qualify in the event you file a claim. This is unlikely to be a problem if you’ve owned and maintained your appliances their whole life and kept a maintenance log, but if you’ve just purchased a house with older appliances and the previous owners have not kept records, then home renovation insurance is probably not going to be worth it for you–or even a possibility. (You need those records!)

Conversely, if you’ve just purchased brand new appliances or put them into a new heating or cooling system, now is not the best time to get home renovation insurance either. Everything should be running smoothly for a few years before you need to think about things breaking down or burning out. 

You should, however, keep that maintenance log with detailed records so that, down the road, you’ll have the paper trail to qualify for home repair insurance. 

Appliance or SystemAverage Lifespan
Washers and dryers10 years
Garbage disposals12 years
Fridges13 years
Hot water heaters10 years
Air conditioning15 years
Gas stoves15 years
Dishwashers9 years
Trash compactors9 years

So Is Home Repair Insurance Worth It?

Maybe! If you have older appliances and systems and have kept thorough maintenance records, then home repair insurance can save you a lot of money over the years. However, if you have newer appliances and systems and/or older ones with no records, then this plan is probably not worth the premiums.

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FAQs
Home repair insurance covers most major systems (i.e. heating and cooling) and appliances (like fridges and washing machines). Coverage can vary between providers, however, so get a quote to see how much this type of plan will cost you.
Anywhere from $300 to $600 a year, depending on the range of coverage you decide on. Customized plans are an option.
Yes, and you need to keep up with regular maintenance on all your systems and appliances, otherwise your claims will likely be denied.

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