Sunday, May 07, 2006

May my home warranty company file for bankruptcy and die a slow, painful death

I hate my home warranty. Hate it. I would rather hear the details of TomKat's spectacular pre-baby sex life than spend 2 seconds on the phone with my home warranty service. Ever. Again.

Why do I hate home warranties, you ask? Well, lemme tell ya. Because they pretend like they're there to help, when really they can't wait for something to break down just so they can laugh in your face and tell you that they can't really help you.

And they often like to drag out the torture. Case in point--our ceiling fan. Last August (which is the most sweltering month of the year out here), the ceiling fan in Little Guys' room broke. But--I was not worried because I had a home warranty service. I checked our contract like a good customer, found that ceiling fans were covered, and called customer service. Our conversation went something like this:

Me: Hi, I'm calling because our ceiling fan broke and I was wondering if someone can come out and fix it.

Rep: Uh, well, let's see...(pause)...I'm sorry, but ceiling fans are not covered by your contract.

Me: What?! I checked out contract and they ARE covered.

Rep: No, they aren't. It says right here in provision 14a. Ceiling fans are NOT covered. (She definitely stressed the "not" just to be really clear.)

Me: Well, I have the Ultimate Upgrade option and it says that with Ultimate Upgrade, they ARE covered.

Rep: Oh, OK, well, if you have the Ultimate Upgrade then ceiling fans are covered and we can send someone out.

Damn. Why do I have to tell them what coverages I qualify for. If I hadn't kept a copy of my contract I would have been screwed. But as it turned out I was screwed anyway because when the guy came out to fix it, he said that he couldn't proceed with the repairs because it had been improperly installed and "improper installation of an item that results in damage" is not covered by the contract.

Then he charged me $45 for the service visit.

So that was how they screwed me the first time. Then just last week, we called the warranty service again because the water in our shower was backed up. I thought surely they would be able to help us. But when the warranty guy came out to the house (2 hours late), he told us that he couldn't fix it because there wasn't adequate "access" available to the plumping.

Then he charged us $45.

To add insult to injury, the next morning we got a follow-up call from the Home Warranty Service. I thought they were calling to tell us that they had realized that they really could help us because after all that's what we are paying them for. But no, they were just calling to tell us "officially" that they were under no obligation to fix our plumbing. Yeah, we knew that already. Thanks.

Then the next day, cuz they obviously wanted to REALLY rub it in, we got a letter saying that per Section F, Item No. 1 of the contract, they "are not responsible for providing service where access is not available...blah blah blah".

What I want to know is, what IS covered under this godd**m service? Window washing? Light bulb replacement?

I'm sure there are some good home warranties out there. I've actually had an OK experience with a different warranty company in our previous home. But I gotta say this home warranty service really sucks a**. And in case you are wondering, as of this writing, our shower is still out of commission.

Now, I don't really want to name names about which home warranty service I have.

I mean, I wouldn't want them to lose any business because of me or anything.

Cuz I'm really not the petty type, you know?

But I do need a couple graphics for this post so...


Anonymous Nancy said...

LOL on the graphics addition to your post. But did they deserve the free advertising after all that? You should charge them for posting their logo -- let's say, $45 a pop. ;-)

10:31 PM  
Blogger Catch said...

Great post! And so true and so very aggravating!!! go to Lowes or home depot and get some extra strength stuff for your shower...a plumber told me this when my worked!

11:55 PM  
Blogger Lindsay said...

HAHAHAAA! Awesome Post!

12:54 AM  
Blogger Mega Mom said...

I'm so glad you let us know! We got a free home warranty with them last year when we bought the house. They came out once for $60 to snake our toilet.

I didn't renew. Yeah me!

4:48 AM  
Blogger Pattie said...

Ha! Good for you for calling them out!
I never heard of a home warranty before, except the ones provided by the bulider of a new home. Thanks for the education!

5:07 AM  
Blogger Marcie said...

If the warranty comes free with the house that's one thing, but I have read you should never never renew them. They are usually rip offs.

5:42 AM  
Blogger Mommy off the Record said...

Nancy: LOL--$45 for each logo. I like that idea!

Catch: thanks for the recommendation. we're doing that too.

Mega Mom: that's good that you got an unclogged toliet out of it! At least that's something!

Domesticator: we have an older home and the warranty came "free" when we purchased it. But it's not really free when you consider the seller had to pay for it. In CA people often seem to sell their homes with a warranty. Not sure if it's law or what. I can't remember.

Marcie: yep, won't be renewing. no way no how.

6:51 AM  
Blogger Jodi said...

UGH. So sorry for all your troubles. it seems like warranties for anything, cars, houses, anything are not what they are cracked up to be for sure!

10:18 AM  
Blogger Andrea said...

Huh! And I was always told that the home warranty was a GOOD idea! Just goes to show... We built our house and had a one year warranty that ended three months before one of our upstairs bathrooms had a leak so bad it dripped through to the first floor. Yeah, after almost a year getting on the builder's case, they're fixing it. Finally.

11:25 AM  
Blogger Zephra said...

That reminds me of our last car. We got the extended warrenty. It never covered what broke. WTF!

12:10 PM  
Blogger Christina said...

What a worthless warranty. So if your house blows up, will they refuse to do anything because they won't have adequate access due to the rubble?

I say make their lives a living hell. Send them a bill for your time dealing with them on the phone.

12:47 PM  
Anonymous sweatpantsmom said...

Ha! Nice 'graphic.'

I steer away from warranties of any kind. I paid a fortune for one for my Saab I had years ago and found out it basically only covered the left windshield wiper and one of the slats from the heating vent.

(post a complaint on

12:56 PM  
Blogger jennster said...


1:25 PM  
Anonymous lildb said...

I think those suckers are required in some states, but in Oregon they usually are provided by the sellers, unless the house is new, in which case, it's provided by the builder. Either way, usually you get zilch from said warranty -- we had a handful of issues that were never fixed by the builder, 'cause he was a total flake. I wish you hadn't purchased that crap - they are a huge rip-off.

looks like you exacted at least a pound of flesh in your post about it, though. hilarious!

and thanks for blogrolling me :) :) I'm twenty-six shades of red, right now.

8:40 PM  
Blogger something blue said...

They certainly are full of excuses and fees. That is not much of a service.

So Tom thinks sex is better when it's free. Yes, that is how it should be!

8:44 PM  
Blogger cameo said...

shows how much i know - i didn't even know you could warranty a house. but i have a couple of good friends and an awsome husband that get me through my house shit.

8:49 PM  
Blogger Marla said...

AHS. Let's pronounce that:


That's right.

9:04 PM  
Blogger Catherine said...

What a great post! I love when something is both funny AND educational.... not that I'm laughing at your pain.

9:56 PM  
Blogger Petite Mom Blogger said...

I've never heard of a home warranty either. Either way, loved the post! :)

6:35 PM  
Blogger Her Bad Mother said...

Ah, the beauty of blogging - perfect opportunities, daily, for sweet, sweet revenge.

Was it wrong that I laughed?

7:22 PM  
Blogger mama_tulip said...


7:47 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Why it was happen? I have a KB Home Warranty and I don't want to turn it into bankruptcy because my home is very important to me. KB home is great on their warranty service and I trust them. Visit them here for more information.

6:43 PM  

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