What is a home warranty?

A home warranty plan protects the appliances and systems in your home: major home appliances, electrical, plumbing, and HVAC systems. Unlike your homeowners insurance policy, which protects your home from covered perils, a home warranty is a service contract that covers general wear and tear. And while homeowners insurance is required by most lenders, a home warranty is not.

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How does a home warranty work?*

When one of your covered systems or appliances breaks, you'll file a claim and your home warranty will send a pre-screened technician to diagnose the issue. As long as it's a covered failure, your home warranty can help pay for the repair or replacement of the system or appliance, minus any deductible your warranty requires. A deductible may apply for each claim you file.

A home warranty is a contract with a set term limit — usually monthly or annual, sometimes longer. You can typically renew a home warranty once it expires, and many are set to automatically renew.

Do all home warranties have a deductible?

It's typical for home warranties to have a deductible that you'll be responsible for, usually per claim. Beyond the deductible, your home warranty can help pay the repair or replacement costs for covered appliances and systems. There may be certain costs not covered by your home warranty plan, such as permits or hauling away of equipment. Always check your warranty's terms for limitations and exclusions.

What does a home warranty cover?

A home warranty can typically cover the servicing, repair, or replacement of essential appliances and systems in your home that aren't directly related to the home's structure. Covered appliances may include your:

  • Dishwasher
  • Refrigerator
  • Oven
  • Stove
  • Washing machine
  • Dryer
  • HVAC, electrical, and plumbing systems

Depending on the provider, it's also possible to get a home warranty only for specific types of systems and appliances. For example, Progressive Home Warranty by Cinch¹ offers plans that cover just your built-in systems or just your major appliances.

What plumbing systems do home warranties cover?

Plumbing repairs and replacements are typically covered by complete home warranty plans. Cinch's Complete Home Plan and Built-In Systems Plan cover plumbing for the following:

  • Water heater
  • Toilets
  • Sump pumps
  • Instant hot/cold water dispensers
  • Garbage disposals
  • Whirlpools/jetted tubs
  • Interior gas, water, and drain lines

Do home warranties cover ductwork?

Ductwork is considered part of your HVAC system, so it's typically covered by complete home warranty plans. Cinch covers ductwork for air conditioning and heating units (up to two units each), under the Complete Home Plan and the Built-In Systems Plan.

What's not covered by a home warranty?

Home warranties may not cover items that are covered by a separate warranty, such as a manufacturer's or retailer's warranty. Make sure you fully understand how your warranty works, and if any systems or appliances are excluded from coverage.

How much do home warranty plans cost?

Home warranty plans cost at least a few hundred dollars per year, depending on your location, plan, and provider. Because home warranties offer varying levels of protection, the most affordable plans are those with basic coverage. Think of it in terms of an insurance policy: lower premiums mean higher potential out-of-pocket costs.

Pro tip:

Keep up with regularly maintaining your appliances. If, say, your HVAC system or refrigerator breaks down due to neglect or misuse, your warranty may not cover the expense to repair or replace it.

Are home warranties worth it?

When deciding if a home warranty is worth it, consider how much it would cost to have a system repaired or one of your appliances replaced. The potential savings your home warranty can provide may quickly outweigh the costs of your plan.

For example, plumbers typically charge anywhere from $45 to $150 an hour. A small job like a leak or clogged drain could cost you more than $300 for a couple hours of a plumber's time, not including materials. If you need to repair a burst pipe, the labor could cost well over $1,000 without a home warranty. Not to mention the mold and water damage, which isn't covered by home warranties and, if the damage happened gradually, may not even be covered by your homeowners insurance.

How to get a home warranty through Progressive

Progressive Home Warranty by Cinch offers three types of home warranty plans: Appliances, Built-in Systems, and Complete Home, which includes systems and appliances. To get started, you can get a home warranty quote online or call 1-866-749-7436.

Get a home warranty today for peace of mind

Learn more about home warranty plans.

Please note: The above is meant as general information to help you understand the different aspects of insurance. Read our editorial standards for Answers content. This information is not an insurance policy, does not refer to any specific insurance policy, and does not modify any provisions, limitations, or exclusions expressly stated in any insurance policy. Descriptions of all coverages and other features are necessarily brief; in order to fully understand the coverages and other features of a specific insurance policy, we encourage you to read the applicable policy and/or speak to an insurance representative. Coverages and other features vary between insurers, vary by state, and are not available in all states. Whether an accident or other loss is covered is subject to the terms and conditions of the actual insurance policy or policies involved in the claim. References to average or typical premiums, amounts of losses, deductibles, costs of coverages/repair, etc., are illustrative and may not apply to your situation. We are not responsible for the content of any third-party sites linked from this page.