Peace of Mind.
When it comes to move-in gifts for new buyers, some agents buy their clients flowers; others maybe a dinner downtown. I’ve seen some really creative gifts, too — such as a artist’s sketch of their new home, or a display case with all of their former house keys. Well, I’ll be the first to admit that creativity has never been one of my strong suits. When it comes to giving gifts, the analytical (and boring) side of my former-engineer’s brain overrides the creative side. Utility usually wins over creativity. So the house-warming gift I always buy for my clients is this: A one-year home warranty.
It’s not as pretty as a dozen roses, and not as tasty as a dinner at Town, but long after those two are a distant memory, the home warranty is still hard at work providing new home owners with peace of mind.
No Home is Perfect.
Why a home warranty? Because “Murphy’s Law” seems to be a hidden clause in every real estate purchase contract. No matter how new or remodeled a home may be, something always always seems to break or malfunction during that first year you’re living in your new home. And since the standard home insurance policy doesn’t usually cover a dead dishwasher or a hot water heater that burped all over your garage floor, the home warranty is a nice supplement to that plan. It’s peace of mind that after you turned over every piggy bank just to make your home purchase, you won’t be blindsided with a potentially expensive repair during that first year of home ownership.
How They Work.
A home warranty is just like any other insurance policy. You simply call the toll-free number on the policy, and they’ll arrange for the appropriate specialist to come out and fix the problem. You normally pay a nominal deductible (about $50 or so) and the insurance company covers the rest. So it’s easy to see how the policy pays for itself the first time you use it. And if your agent is not a cheapskate and ordered you the premium package, most everything is covered in the house: refrigerator, washer and dryer, plumbing, hot water heater, garage door opener….if it moves, it’s usually covered. There are items like the roof that are not, so it’s important to read through your policy to understand what’s covered and what isn’t.
A Gift That Gets Used.
My clients have told me that they really appreciate the home warranty gift — because it gets used. I would estimate that over 90% of the policies that I have purchased for my clients get used during that first year. Recently, one client had to use their policy the first week after they moved in when their air conditioning unit decided it was full, and left 2 inches of water in the basement.
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