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Can a home warranty protect you?

When you build a new home in California, you put a lot of trust in your builder. Generally, to help ensure that you are satisfied with the final product, your builder will offer a warranty. However, the FTC warns not all warranties are equal. You may even have the option of buying additional warranties from third-party providers. Some of the components of your home, such as the heating system or the appliances may also come with manufacturer warranties. It is important to understand how each of the warranties protects you.

Generally, each warranty you receive is limited. For example, the builder's warranty probably only covers issues related to the building. It will not cover the appliances, for example, It may only be limited to one year and the coverage for damage or issues may not cover everything. For example, a small crack in a floor tile may not be covered and repaired under the warranty. The warranties you get from other sources will also have similar limitations.

Typically, a warranty only covers repair costs. You are not usually reimbursed for expenses you may incur due to the damage, such as hotel expenses if you cannot stay in the home while it is under repair. If other things in your home were damaged due to the defect or issue, they also may not be covered.

Another important aspect of any warranty is it usually outlines how the repairs will be handled. This could include how long you will wait for them or what exactly will be done. For example, if repair is to a specific material, substitute materials may be allowed under the warranty.

Knowing the details of any warranties for your home is essential to ensuring you get what you rightfully deserve under them and that you do not have expectations that go beyond your what your warranty offers. This information is for education and is not legal advice.

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