American Home Shield Review

Are you thinking about purchasing a home warranty in 2018 but not sure which company to choose? Have you seen the American Home Shield commercial, but still not sure if this is the right company for you? The best way to make an informed decision is to read the company review at ReviewHomeWarranties.com and see what other customers have to say. Unlike many other home warranty reviews that provide mostly commercial information, this American Home Shield review describes the most important facts about the company’s operation, including AHS warranty terms and conditions, contract coverage, and summarized consumer reports.

Updated for Sep 20, 2018

Official website:

Not available through RHW
American Home Shield Reviews by Our Readers
Cast vote by clicking on either button above
Covered States
Hawaii Alaska Florida New Hampshire Michigan Vermont Maine Rhode Island New York Pennsylvania New Jersey Delaware Maryland Virginia West Virginia Ohio Indiana Illinois Connecticut Wisconsin North Carolina District of Columbia Massachusetts Tennessee Arkansas Missouri Georgia South Carolina Kentucky Alabama Louisiana Mississippi Iowa Minnesota Oklahoma Texas New Mexico Kansas Nebraska South Dakota North Dakota Wyoming Montana Colorado Idaho Utah Arizona Nevada Oregon Washington California
Ratings
Trustworthiness:
Plans and Coverage:
Feedback:
The Fine Print:
Promotions:
Editor Rating:
Reader Rating:
Covered Appliances and Systems
Facts and Figures
?
Effective in
24/7
Hours
?
Cancellation
$420 - $720
Premium
$75 - $125
Deductible
$1500 - $3000
Limits
Pros And Cons
Market veteran
Large and established firm
Different plan types available
Emergency service available

Tricky terms and conditions
High chance of payment delays
Incomprehensive coverage
1 day to submit a claim
Not available through RHW

Our Top-Rated Alternatives to American Home Shield

 Almost-Nationwide Service

 Majority of Client Reviews Online Are Positive

 Clearest Terms and Conditions

 Highest Contractor Professionalism

Best Gold Plan ("Platinum Care") Select Home Warranty Review

Clients from:  

 Virginia, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, New Jersey, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, District of Columbia + 22 More States
More Than 10 Years on the Market

Most Comprehensive Coverage Available

Free Reservice Period for Parts

Emergency Service Available

Cheapest and Best Basic Plan ($34/m) Choice Home Warranty Review

Clients from:  

 Virginia, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, South Dakota, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Washington, District of Columbia + 23 More States
 Customer Service Available 24/7

 Least BBB Complaints

Great Reviews on Google Places

Reservice for Failed Parts

1 Free Month Upon Annual Sign-Up Total Home Protection Review

Clients from:  

 Virginia, Arizona, Arkansas, Colorado, Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Maryland, Michigan, Missouri, New Jersey, North Carolina, Ohio, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Florida + 12 More States

The Editor’s Words

American Home Shield is one of the biggest and oldest companies on the home warranty market. It was established in 1971 in Memphis, Tennessee. Today, AHS home warranty serves millions of customers all over the country and keeps enrolling new clients, aggressively advertising online and on TV.

Before signing a new contract with a home warranty company, most consumers would like to know how it stands related to other companies, whether it offers better plans, and how the premiums and service fees compare. For this purpose, we compared Choice Home Warranty vs American Home Shield and other companies in our Vis a Vis section in order to help you make a quick choice. 

Another important factor that may help you make the right decision regarding a home warranty is customer reviews. American Home Shield reviews on consumer reporting sites are mixed. The company has low Yelp ratings, but high Google Reviews ratings. It is accredited by Better Business Bureau, which is usually a perceived as a sign of a good reputation. American Home Shield BBB  rating is B. However, eighty-one percent of customer reviews of AHS on this site are negative.

American Home Shield warranty offers a variety of coverage plans with a limited selection of add-on items. Premium amounts vary and depend on the deductibles known as the “service call fee.” Customers who choose the lower premiums will have to pay higher service call fees, and vice versa. Comparing American Home Shield vs First American Home Warranty, we can say that this system allows more flexibility and convenience to the customers. In case there are any issues, American Home Shield complaints can be resolved by the American Arbitration Association.

Trustworthiness

One of the first companies on the home warranty market, American Home Shield has been in business for almost 50 years now. It proudly serves the customers in most states, including Texas, California, Minnesota, South Dakota, Arizona, Iowa, Virginia, Georgia, and Florida, with the only exception being Arkansas.

American Home Shield has two sister companies, Landmark Home Warranty, and Home Security of America, that serve customers in a limited number of states. In case of any disputes that cannot be resolved internally, customers of all three home warranty companies may file a complaint with the American Arbitration Association.

Accessibility

How to contact
Main page >> contact-us
Online chat
No
Social media

Getting a free quote from AHS is easy. Extraverts can get it by phone, and for the introverts, there is an online contact form on the American Home Shield website at ahs.com. Unfortunately, online chat is not available, but the company is widely presented in social networks including Facebook, Pinterest, and Google+.

Benchmarks American Home Shield Other companies

Company size
1,600
0 1,760
Annual revenue
$101,240,000
0 $545,572,500
Number of homeowners
1,700,000
0 6,050,000
Number of BBB complaints closed within last 3 years
652
0 14,850
Traffic
349,000
0 14,209,800
Number of independent contractors
14,000
0 44,000

Reputation

BBB accreditation
B (Accredited)
Awards
2014-2015 Women`s Choice Award, 2014 Home Warranty Awards Best in Service Award

Coverage

American Home Shield coverage includes the following plans: Systems Plan, Appliance Plan, Combo Plan, and Build Your Own Plan. The pricing is flexible and depends on how much you want to spend per month vs. per service call. The more you pay per month, the cheaper the service call is for you, and vice versa. When we compared Total Protect vs American Home Shield, we noticed that they offer similar payment options.

The Systems Plan includes replacement or repair of the components of all major home systems but not any household appliances.

The Appliance Plan, on the contrary, includes home appliances but not any systems, such as plumbing, a/c and heating, electrical wires, and ceiling fans.

The Combo Plan is the most popular one. It includes everything in the Systems and Appliance plans and saves you $14 a month over purchasing the two plans separately.

The Build Your Own Plan allows homeowners to include only those items that they would like to cover. This is the most convenient and the most expensive plan available with American Home Shield.

Summary of plans and coverage:

Coverage Term
Service Call Fee
ItemsLimit Silver Systems Plan Platinum Combo Plan Silver Appliance Plan Optional Coverage
Premium Amount - $34.99 $38.99 $49.99 $44.99 $49.99 $59.99 $34.99 $38.99 $49.99 $30.00 - $159.96
Service Call Fee - $125.00 $100.00 $75.00 $125.00 $100.00 $75.00 $125.00 $100.00 $75.00 -
Term, Month - 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 12
Coverage$1,500.00 - $3,000.00

The main points of AHS warranty coverage for all home systems and appliances that can be included in the contract are summarized in the table above. Here we highlight the most important information:

Air Conditioning

American Home Shield has strict dollar limits for home system repairs. For air conditioning systems, all inside units are covered up to $1,500, and ductwork is covered up to $1,000. For refrigerant replacement, the charge is $10 per pound. All outside or underground components and legally mandated diagnostic tests are not covered.

Heating System

For heating and ductwork, all units are covered by the AHS home warranty except outside pipes, pumps, and components, as well as fuel storage, portable units, fireplaces, wood, pellet or grain heating units, and legally mandated diagnostics. Coverage may also be limited by your specific contract. The charge for refrigerant replacement will again be $10 per pound.

Electrical System

American Home Shield coverage for electrical parts includes all wires, lights, and fans. However, any audio or video gadgets, phones, cable, alarms, security systems, and such, are not included.

Plumbing System

Plumbing is only covered by the AHS warranty up to $1,000, and that includes diagnostics, repair, and replacement of any parts. The customer is responsible for any expenses above this limit, and for any parts and works listed in the Not Covered column of the table above.

For water heaters, only tankless units and circulating pumps are covered. No auxiliary fuel storage tanks and no energy conservation units are covered. If your water heater makes a noise, fixing that is not covered either.

Home Appliances

All components and parts are covered for most home appliances, including garbage disposals, instant water dispensers, smoke detectors, ceiling fans, and doorbells if they are not the part of the intercom systems. However, for the refrigerators, AHS home warranty will only pay up to $5,000 per dual compressor refrigerator. That includes access, diagnosis, and repair or replacement. Freestanding freezers, wine chillers, and multimedia centers are not covered.

 

The Fine Print

Item
Comparison to Industry
Coverage effective after
n/a
Cancellation with refund within
Above industry average
Cancellation fee
n/a
Automatic policy renewal
As 94.7% of industry
Time to cancel automatic renewal
n/a
Fee for contract transfer
At industry minimum
Max time to submit claim
At industry minimum
Repair timeframe
At industry maximum
Repair timeframe (weekends and holidays)
n/a
Free second opinion
As 26.3% of industry
Emergency service available
As 88.7% of industry
Hours for service calls
As 85.5% of industry
Reservice if repairs fail
Standard for industry
Free reservice period (parts)
Below industry average
Free reservice period (labor)
Below industry average

We have carefully read all of the terms and conditions of the American Home Shield warranty, including the fine print, and summarized the main points in the table above. Overall, policy information was easy to find, except for the dollar limits, and it was written in such a way that any average client would able to easily understand the terms and conditions. Most of the terms were not tricky. However, any information on pre-inspection or re-service was not available. As for the waiting time mentioned in the contract, customers should keep in mind that it will take up to 48 hours to get a call from the service company, not the service itself.  

Please note that the American Home Shield contract will be renewed automatically unless canceled within 30 days of the contract’s expiration date. The cancellation fee was not specified in the company’s terms and conditions.

Customer Reviews and Feedback

Quotes from actual customer reviews:

Recently had to use my home shield warranty which covered all of the broken items. Overall very happy and the contractors were great, showed up on time, professional and polite. I did have to stay on top of the assigned contractor which took about a week but i did not mind.

BBB, March 28, 2018

I'll give them 2 stars because eventually my problem got addressed. Subtracted 3 stars because: - it took 2 months and 4 visits from plumbers to replace my toilet - I was lied to, repeatedly, by the people who answer the phone at AHS. They fabricated statements from the plumber, and my problem was only addressed after I got someone from Authorizations to conference call with the actual plumber who stated what the problem was and refuted what was put on record previously.

Google Reviews, April 5, 2018

Summary of ratings from popular review sites:

American Home Shield Industry Average

Website

Relative Score

Adjusted Score

Yelp
6
114
1.0
1.8
1.2
Pissed Consumer
1132
132
1.4
1.4
2.4
BBB
2470
178
1.9
3.4
1.2
Google Reviews
5075
360
4.3
3.2
3.4
YSCAM
70
11
1.0
1.0
2.4
Viewpoints
50
50
1.3
1.3
2.4
Complaints List
23
12
1.2
1.1
2.6
Site Jabber
43
13
3.1
2.0
4.0
Active Rain
14
15
4.1
4.3
2.4

Summary Rating
2.3
2.3
2.2

Types of repairs performed according to customer feedback:

Air conditioner Plumbing Heating system Dishwasher Toilet Washer Refrigerator Oven Microwave Dryer Free-standing ice maker Sprinkler

Main takeaway points from customer feedback:

American Home Shield Industry Average
Good work
12%
13%
Professional contractor
9%
7%
Good communication
1%
5%
Money offer
4%
4%
Fast work
3%
3%
Act of good faith
0%
0%
Communication problems
13%
16%
Repair delay
21%
16%
Claim denial
9%
13%
Tricky terms
9%
7%
Unprofessional contractor
8%
7%
Unexpected costs
10%
6%
Payment delay
3%
2%

American Home Shield reviews were collected from ten consumer reporting sites. Overall, there were more than 10,000 reviews. The highest rating was on Google Reviews at 4.4 stars out of five. On other consumer reporting sites, the AHS ratings ranged from one to 4.1. Of those American home warranty reviews that reported negative experiences, the major concerns were a slow reaction to filed claims, poor customer support, and complaints about contractor services.

Upon analyzing American Home Shield reviews in terms of user-friendliness, it was found that there were problems with getting in touch with an operator without going through the recording first. Some users had to make additional phone calls to get authorization for the services, and the company was slow to react to emergency complaints. The contract states that services will be initiated under normal circumstances within 48 hours after the service request has been made, but many customers complain that it takes much longer than that.

Overall, while American Home Shield warranty tries to provide good quality services to its customers, there can be some obstacles and limitations in using the company's policy.

The Final Words

The Final Words: Is American Home Shield Good?

American Home Shield is one of the oldest home warranty companies on the market. It honors new contracts and provides services to customers from all over the USA, except for Arkansas. The company claims to address any issues covered by the contract within 48 hours. However, it does not always hold up to its word.

There are several types of American Home Shield plans, and customers may choose to select coverage for either the home systems, appliances, or a combination plan. Customized plans that only cover items selected by the customer are also available.

The cost for American Home Shield, like with any home warranty company, consists of two parts: a premium and a deductible. Customers can choose whether they prefer higher premiums and lower deductibles, or vice versa.

You can get a free quote by phone, mail, or online. If after reading this American Home Shield review you are not satisfied with the company for any reason,  we can offer you several alternatives at the top of this page. 

 

Ratings
Trustworthiness:
Plans and Coverage:
Feedback:
The Fine Print:
Promotions:
Editor Rating:
Reader Rating:
View Alternative Companies