Are you selling your home and in the market for home warranty protection?
Perfect, you’re in the right spot. In this guide, you’ll learn:
- What is a home warranty plan for selling a home?
- How much does a home warranty cost when selling a home?
- Is a home warranty service contract worth it for sellers?
- How does home coverage for sellers work?
- What are the best home warranty companies and plans for sellers?
We’ve reviewed 68 different warranty companies, and below are our top picks for mobile home coverage specific to your state. Want to learn more about each? Scroll down!
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What's In This Guide?
Selling a home can be a stressful ordeal. Not only do you have to learn all the ins and outs of the real estate process, but you also have to ensure everything in your home is in good working condition to attract potential home buyers.
Home appliances and major systems can break at any moment, derailing your plans to sell your house. Even worse, if your home has an appliance malfunction or problem after closing, you might end up on the hook for a big repair bill.
That’s why real estate agents often recommend that their clients get a home warranty for their house to protect them and the buyer from unexpected repairs throughout the selling process. With so many great home warranty plans on the market today, it can be tricky to precisely know which one is right for your needs.
So, here’s everything you need to know about coverage options for the home you’re trying to sell, as well as our home warranty reviews of the best plans available to you.
What Are Home Warranties Meant For Sellers?
A home warranty is a way to protect yourself from unexpected repair costs in your house. Home warranty plans are particularly helpful for sellers because they will cover any repairs and replacement costs for your buyer during the selling process and after closing.
Top 5 Best Home Warranties For Home Seller Coverage
With the seller’s plan from a top home warranty company, you pay an annual premium in exchange for financial protection from any repair or maintenance issues up to a set dollar amount. There are multiple types of warranty policies available, including systems plans, appliance plans, and comprehensive plans, so you can get the coverage that you need to quickly sell your home.
What Does A Home Warranty For Sellers Cost?
In general, a seller’s home warranty costs between $300 and $600 for a year of coverage. That being said, there are a number of different factors that will affect the cost of your warranty policy, including the size of your home and the location of your property. So it’s best to request a free quote from any warranty companies you’re considering before you decide on a plan.
Additionally, the type of plan you want and the specific appliances and system that your plan covers will determine how much you pay for your warranty. When it comes to your home warranty coverage, you can usually choose between the following options:
Basic Plan Or Comprehensive Plan
A basic plan will offer protection for your home’s most essential systems and major appliances, like your ductwork, electrical system, and plumbing. These are often the most economical choice if you want coverage for just the bare necessities and not much else.
Alternatively, if you want total coverage for all of your major home systems and appliances, a comprehensive plan might be your best choice.
This option tends to cost a bit more, but these plans cover pretty much everything in your home, with some exceptions, such as a pool, or septic system. If you want even more coverage, you can usually get optional add-ons for these items to protect your investment even further and entice potential buyers.
Appliances Plans, Systems Plans, And Combo Plans
If you’re looking for more targeted coverage of certain parts of your house, an appliance or systems plan might be a good idea. With an appliance plan, you get coverage for items like a clothes washer, garage door opener, ceiling fan, or cooktop.
On the other hand, systems plans cover things like your HVAC, plumbing system, or electrical. Companies that offer these options will often also have a more comprehensive combo plan that includes all of the covered items in both the systems and appliances policies.
Build Your Own Plan
Finally, there are a few different home warranty providers that offer build your own plan options for sellers that really want to customize their warranty policy. With a build your own plan, you can choose between a variety of different covered items, including anything from an ice maker to a sump pump.
This option tends to be the most expensive, but it is a good bet for home sellers with very particular coverage needs.
Best Home Warranty For Home Sellers?
Choice Home Warranty is our #1 pick for home sellers because they have affordable, yet effective coverage to protect both you and your buyer during the real estate process.
Is A Home Warranty For Sellers Worth It?
If you’re selling your house, you’ve probably already spent quite a bit of money on updating your home, so you might not be convinced that you need a home warranty. But, a home warranty for sellers is worth it. Here’s why:
Coverage For Unforeseen Repair Costs
Selling a home is stressful enough, so you don’t need to add any unexpected repair costs on top of your list of things to worry about. Whether it’s your air conditioning system or your dishwasher, the right home warranty plan will protect you financially from huge home repair bills.
When you have a home warranty, any malfunctions that arise during the selling process will cost you just a small service fee and the price of any labor or parts above your per-item coverage limit. This protection can save you a whole lot of money out of pocket so you have more to spend moving costs and upgrades on your future new home.
Peace Of Mind During the Selling Process
The last thing you want is to be days away from closing on your house only to find out that your home’s heating system has decided it no longer wants to work. Not only will this put the entire sale in jeopardy, but it will also likely cost you a few thousand dollars.
However, with a home warranty, you just need to submit a claim, and the company will promptly send a qualified service provider to your house to assess, diagnose, and repair any issues. That way, you can still close on your house on time and avoid any hiccups along the way.
Extra Assurance For Home Buyers
Home buyers don’t like surprises when they’re about to spend some significant money on a new house. With a home warranty, buyers can feel confident that their new home will be well worth their investment.
The extra assurance of a home warranty can be enough to convince a prospective buyer to put down an offer on your house instead of a comparable alternative. That way, you can get your house off the market sooner, while also keeping your buyer happy throughout the process.
Protection From Issues During Home Inspections
A home inspection usually happens right after a seller accepts an offer from a buyer. However, issues that arise during an inspection can easily result in thousands of dollars in repair costs, which eats away at how much money you can put toward your next home.
Thankfully, many top home warranty companies offer protection against inspection issues in their plans for sellers. That way, you can focus more on applying for a mortgage or searching for a new house and less on the home you’re trying to sell.
Increased Selling Value
When you sell a home, you want to make as much as you possibly can. A home warranty can help boost your home’s selling value by making it more attractive to buyers.
Although a home warranty on its own doesn’t do anything to the appraised value of your house, this extra perk can help entice buyers and can result in a bidding war. That way, a home warranty can indirectly increase the final selling value of your home. What’s not to love?
Want 7 more tips on how you can increase the value of your home while it’s on the market? Check out this video!
Limits Post-Sale Disputes
While we all hope that our new home buyers are happy with their decision to invest in our house, disputes can arise after closing if an appliance or system breaks unexpectedly. However, with a home warranty, your buyer can simply reach out to the home warranty company to request a service call instead of contacting you to deal with an issue.
This can save everyone a whole lot of hassle if there are problems with the house after the sale. So, a warranty can help your buyer get quick and efficient repair service while also giving you the freedom to focus solely on your new house.
Covers What Homeowners Insurance Won’t
You almost certainly have a homeowners insurance policy to protect your house against any damages caused by fire, earthquake, flood, or another natural disaster. But, your insurance won’t do much if your appliance breaks from normal wear and tear. A home warranty, on the other hand, will.
This is also true for manufacturer’s warranties. When you buy a new appliance, it probably came with a nice warranty to protect against any defects in craftsmanship. But, when this manufacturer’s warranty expires, you’ll be liable for any subsequent repair costs.
With a home warranty, though, you’ll be covered long after a manufacturer’s warranty expires or when your insurance policy won’t pay up. So, a warranty is a good way to get more comprehensive coverage for your home should something serious arise during the selling process.
How Do Home Warranties For Sellers Work (Are They Unique)?
For the most part, home warranties that you can get for a home are the same whether you’ve owned the house for a while or if you’re selling yours for the first time. While some companies will offer special deals and terms to home sellers, most will provide the same coverage for your house regardless of where you are in the real estate process.
Here’s how a seller’s home warranty works:
Step 1: Select A Plan
The first step in the home warranty process is to select a plan. As we’ve mentioned you have quite a few different options to choose from, based on the type of coverage that you want. For complete coverage, a comprehensive or combo plan is often the best option.
Alternatively, a basic plan is usually the most economical choice for sellers on a budget. However, if you just want to protect your home’s appliances or systems, an appliance/systems plan might be a good decision. Finally, home sellers that want custom coverage on just certain items will do well with a build your own plan.
Once you decide on the coverage plan that you want, you simply need to sign your contract, pay your annual premium, and sit back as your warranty protects you from unexpected repair costs.
Step 2: Sell Your Home Quickly
With your home warranty in hand, you can then sell your house quickly. Prospective buyers like to see that they’ll be covered should their air conditioner or dishwasher break within a year of closing. So, you can spend less time with your house on the market and more time enjoying your new home.
Step 3: Buyer Submits A Claim
If something malfunctions after closing, your buyer just needs to submit a claim to the warranty company’s customer service center. Once the claim is processed, the buyer will pay a small service call fee (usually between $60-$125).
This service fee is sort of like your copay at the doctor’s office. It covers the cost of sending a repair person to your former home to assess, diagnose, and repair any damage.
Step 4: Buyer Gets Prompt Repair Service
After your buyer submits a claim and pays the service fee, they’ll get a professional repair specialist sent to their new home. The technician will then fix any of the issues in the house and the company will pay for the cost of the repair up to the dollar amount listed on the warranty contract.
In the end, your buyer is happy because they got a quick and affordable repair service on their new home without having to dispute the issue with you.
Top Home Warranties For Sellers Reviewed
Choice Home Warranty Review (Best Overall Home Warranty)
Why Do We Like Choice?
Out of all the home warranty companies we reviewed, Choice Home Warranty has the most comprehensive plans, good payout limits, minimal number exclusions, quality customer service, and affordable cost.
Choice has two main home warranty plans. The “Basic Plan” and the more comprehensive “Total Plan” covering 15 home appliances (dishwasher, etc) and systems (duct work, water heater, etc). They also have “Optional Coverage” for add on items most homeowners don’t usually have, which include pools and spas, well pump, sump pump, roof leaks, other extraneous items.
Based on our review, Choice’s “Total” plan covers these items at a more affordable price point than its competitors although has a few more exclusions, which is how they can justify charging a lower monthly payment.
The thing about home warranties is that they are a bit complicated with a lot of moving parts that may confuse most homeowners on what’s covered versus what’s not covered.
A key deciding factor in our review looking for the best home warranty company is finding one with top quality customer service to help customers like you walk through the claims process so you don’t have to worry about nasty surprises when you need service.
That said, Choice has 24 hours a day 7 days a week 365 days a year availability and a 48 hour response time to get a contractor out to your home. Other providers tend to have slower response times and are less communicative about when technicians are assigned to your claim.
Policy On Pre-Existing Issues or Older Units?
Choice covers appliances regardless of age or existing wear and tear, so you don’t need to worry about signing up and not getting covered due to age assuming you’ve properly maintained the item over it’s life.
What’s not covered is if you or someone else breaks the unit regardless of when it happens. All home warranties, regardless of company, won’t cover a unit you break through negligence or misuse (i.e., baby sticks chocolate bar into VCR).
- Good Limits (up to $1,500)
- Minimal Exclusions
- More Affordable
- Only 15 Home Appliances & Systems Covered
American Home Shield Review (Editor’s Choice)
Why Do We Like American Home Shield?
Far and away the most thorough and transparent home warranty company we reviewed is American Home Shield. They are the gold standard. If you spend any amount of time on their website, it’s clear that they are very upfront about what they do cover and don’t cover when compared to their competitors.
In fact, they go out of their way to tell you they cover things their competitors don’t like rust or plumbing stoppages.
They also have the best home warranty coverage with an astounding 21 systems and major appliances including trash compactor, smoke detectors, and clothes washer. They also have the fewest number of exclusions with the highest dollar limit payout amounts ranging from $1,000 – $3,000 per claim.
Think of American Home Shield as the “BMW” or “Mercedes” of home warranty companies. More expensive than Choice, but with better coverage and limits.
Policy On Pre-Existing Issues or Older Units?
Very similar to Choice, American Home Shield covers old systems and appliances that break down due to wear and tear, but they do not cover pre-existing issues or negligence related to the misuse of your appliance or system!
- Highest Payout Limits (up to $3,000)
- Widest Coverage (21 systems and appliances)
- Fewest Exclusions
- Most Expensive
Select Home Warranty Review (Most Affordable)
Why Do We Like Select Home Warranty?
Select Home Warranty made our list as a best budget friendly home warranty option. They have lower limits ranging from $500 – $2,000 per claim but also lower service fee costs and potentially reduced annual premiums as low $325 per year if you opt into multiple year contracts, far below other competitors.
If you opt for their “Platinum Care” they are on-par with other providers in terms of what they actually cover.
Overall, a great budget option for people who want a home warranty but can’t afford Choice or American Home Shield.
Policy On Pre-Existing Issues or Older Units?
Very similar to Choice and American Home Shield, Select covers old systems and appliances that break down due to wear and tear, but they do not cover pre-existing issues or negligence related to the misuse of your appliance or system!
- Most Affordable Service Contracts
- Roof leaks Are Covered In Their Platinum Plan
- Ultra Pushy Sales
- 3 Days To Submit Claim
- Weaker Network Of Contractors
Total Home Protect Review (Best For Larger Systems)
Why Do We Like Total Home Protect?
Total Home Warranty made our list as a home warranty with above average protection on more robust systems like septic systems and roof coverage.
Their monthly cost comes out to around ~$45 per month for their basic “Gold” plan, which puts them on the more expensive side of the scale when compared to other top home warranties on our list with better coverage.
Most home warranties do not cover anything related to your roof but Total Home Protect does, which we found to be unique to their offering helping them crack our top list.
Policy On Pre-Existing Issues or Older Units?
Very similar to Choice and AHS, Total Home Protect covers old systems and appliances that break down due to wear and tear, but they do not cover pre-existing issues or negligence related to the misuse of your appliance or system!
- You Can Choose Your Own Technicians
- Roof Coverage
- More Exclusions Than Most Competitors
- The Worst BBB score
- Low Payout Limits ($500)
First American Home Warranty Review (Best Customer Service)
Why Do We Like First American Home Warranty?
First American Home Warranty made our list as a home warranty with above average customer service mixed with in with a decent price point.
The only drawback was that they aren’t nationwide lacking coverage in the following states: ND, MN, WI, IL, NY, VT, NH, ME, MA, CT , RI , DE, AL, HI, LA.
Their plan options include a “Basic“ plan, which only covers appliances and will run you about $28 per month. Their combo plan, which covers major systems and appliances branded the “Premier” plan costs around to ~$43 per month.
Overall a good home warranty provider, but just lacking the coverage, which would have helped make a better case for “best overall home warranty company”.
Policy On Pre-Existing Issues or Older Units?
Again, all of the home warranty providers seem to have adopted a similar policy in that they cover “old” appliances and systems that break down due to wear and tear, but they do not cover pre-existing issues or negligence related to the misuse of your appliance or system!
- Great Customer Service (B+ BBB Score)
- Online Chat Support
- Not Available In 15 States
- Can’t Choose Your Own Contractor
Final Thoughts On Home Warranties For Sellers
If you’re looking to sell your home quickly and efficiently, home warranty protection is a must-have. With a home warranty for sellers, you can attract more buyers to your home and have peace of mind that you’ll be covered if something malfunctions during or after closing.
While a warranty might be an out of pocket expense now, it’s well worth it when you sell your home and don’t have to worry about any potential disputes or issues in the future. That way, you can focus on moving and enjoying your new home.