Updated Mar 23, 2023
Updated Mar 23, 2023
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Condos have become a hot commodity among first-time homebuyers in recent years, particularly because of their single-family home feel without traditional homeownership headaches like yard work and exterior maintenance. Yet while upkeep for the area surrounding your condo falls back on your community’s HOA to handle, any service needs concerning your condo’s interior features are up to you to cover.
Investing in a home warranty contract for your condo guarantees instant access to repairs and replacements for a fraction of what you would pay out-of-pocket. Keep reading to learn more about what coverage for your condo will cost and our recommendations for the best home warranty provider specifically for your condo.
To help you track down the best home warranty for your condo, we’ve combed through the most reputable providers nationwide and pulled the following five companies for their superior coverage, attention to customer satisfaction, and all-around affordability:
Choosing the best home warranty company for your condo can be difficult when you’re not an expert in home appliance and system protection contracts. After diving into more than 60 companies, we identified the top factors that you should consider when selecting a home warranty plan and company:
Out of every provider mentioned in this guide, Choice Home Warranty (CHW) stands out as the best home condo warranty. Choice keeps its condo coverage straightforward with its two main coverage options — the Basic Plan and the Total Plan. Our experts granted CHW 4.9/5 stars for having comprehensive coverage options and affordable monthly payments for condo owners.
For just $8 more per month, the Total Plan covers quite a bit more than the Basic Plan, with everything from kitchen and laundry appliances to air conditioning and most other home systems. If you can spare the extra couple of bucks, we recommend going all in with the Total plan, that way you’re not blindsided with a claim denial when a key item in your condo needs servicing.
CHW ensures that a qualified technician from their top-rated internal contractor network is sent to your condo within 48 hours of your claim approval. You can initiate the claims process 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year, through Choice’s online portal or via their live customer service hotline.
Get a free quote from Choice Home Warranty by filling out this online form or calling 929-400-6164.
Visit our complete Choice Home Warranty review for more information on this company.
Liberty Home Guard (LHG) is a relatively young company with only five years of experience compared to its competitors. However, in that time, Liberty has built a name for itself as the “most trustworthy” condo home warranty on the market, backed by hundreds of positive customer reviews and clear transparency of policies and costs on the website. LHG is also one of the only home warranty providers to boast an A rating with the Better Business Bureau (BBB).
With Liberty Home Guard, you will clearly understand what your condo home warranty covers and where to go should an issue arise. The online portal is easy to use and allows you to submit a claim 24/7. In terms of plan recommendations, LHG’s Total Home Guard combo policy is one of our favorite plan options. With this coverage level, you’ll get comprehensive appliance and systems coverage, all for a very fair price.
To get a free quote from Liberty Home Guard, fill out this online form or call 866-451-2281.
Continue reading about LHG in our Liberty Home Guard review.
With Select Home Warranty (SHW), you’ll pay lower premiums while still having access to the high-end plan you’d get from other, more expensive home warranty companies. According to our rating methodology, SHW is the “most affordable” home warranty for a condo. It has 4.8/5 stars due to its low service fee and transparency of cost, coverage, and limitations.
Select splits its coverage into three base policies categorized by type – an appliance plan (the Bronze Care plan), a systems plan (the Gold Care plan), and a two-for-one package that combines both (the Platinum plan).
The only downside we’ve noticed in Select’s policy detail is its slightly narrower coverage limits compared to competing providers. With a lower annual maximum, this may not be the plan for you if you have a large breakdown or a failing high-end appliance. However, most condos will suffice with a policy with lower coverage caps, as your benefits will be concentrated on interior items anyway.
To get a free quote from SHW, fill out this online form or call 888-370-3953.
Check out our Select Home Warranty review for more details.
American Home Shield (AHS) is one of our most recommendable options; our experts rated AHS 4.7/5 stars as the “most customizable” home warranty for a condo. Condo owners who perhaps share systems with other residents in their building can instead opt for an appliance plan, or any other policy structure that works for their individual needs.
AHS also allows condo owners to choose the service fee they’ll pay each time they need work done. The service fee they select will help determine the premium they owe monthly or annually.
For a free quote from American Home Shield, fill out this online form or call 888-365-2839.
To learn more about AHS, visit our American Home Shield review.
Since 2008, The Home Service Club (HSC) has provided condo coverage with no age exclusions on covered appliances and systems and no home inspection required, which is why we rated HSC 4.6/5 stars and the condo home warranty with “quickest service.” With an established network of over 10,000 licensed technicians, there will never be a wait when you need prompt service.
HSC’s policy framework is self-explanatory, with two base plans featuring combo coverage but at different levels. Policyholders who wish to take their coverage one step further can choose from a number of different coverage riders for extra home services. However, most of these add-ons won’t apply to condo owners as they mostly concern exterior home services like roof repairs and utility lines.
To get a free quote from The Home Service Club, fill out this online form or call 800-842-9334.
Continue reading about HSC in our complete The Home Service Club review.
A home warranty for condos is a service contract designed to protect condo owners from incurring large repair or replacement expenses for their unit’s major systems and appliances.
Whether your condo is a new home for you or you’ve lived in your complex for many years, safeguarding your condo with a comprehensive home warranty plan will only benefit you in the long run. Once you have a policy in place, you’ll be able to go about your day with the peace of mind that you’ll never have to dodge unforeseen repair costs for your appliances or home systems.
In a one-on-one interview with House Method, Brandelyn Jones, a Realtor with Realty One Group in Goodyear, Arizona, disclosed that the true value of home warranty coverage for condos “will really depend, because most condominiums have HOAs with blanket insurance policies.” She went on to note that “there’s often this misconception among condo owners that their HOA will automatically assume responsibility for all repairs in and around the unit, which just isn’t the case.”
While the included amenities and features vary from community to community, most HOA fees will cover roofing and common exterior walls, but not damage to personal property. “I’m of the old ‘better safe than sorry’ mindset,” Brandelyn said. “If I have to pay, say $500 per year just for some peace of mind, then it’s worth it. These days there’s very little that you can repair in your home for much less than $500.”
In addition, you must consider your current financial situation. If you are able to pay for all of your systems and appliances to be repaired, and you have qualified and affordable repair people to take care of this, then the home warranty for your condo may not be worth it. Most people, however, will find that they don’t have the savings, knowledge, or patience to deal with the home appliance or systems issues in their homes.
In the end, you will have to decide if the condo home warranty makes sense for your budget and your lifestyle. Most people find that all it takes is one major repair to realize that the home warranty has been well worth the price. If you do not need a repair at all, consider yourself lucky.
The simple truth of homeownership is that no property owner is exempt from maintenance costs. While condo owners may benefit from not worrying about exterior issues like roof leak repairs or sewer line coverage, they still need to expect to finance service solutions for occasional appliance hiccups or system failures.
A home warranty is an especially wise investment for cost-conscious condo owners. Say, for example, your dishwasher was to stop working next week. Without a home warranty, you’re likely to spend at least $200 for a basic repair. If a repair isn’t feasible, a new dishwasher will cost upwards of $500 plus installation, transportation, and labor costs. That entire ordeal would’ve already paid for twelve months of standard home warranty coverage and most of the appliances and systems in your condo, not just your dishwasher.
We also recommend a condo warranty for landlords or anyone who owns a condo as an investment property. In states like Florida and California, many condos bought and leased out for short-term vacations or long-term living rentals. And for landlords who can’t be on-site for their tenants to address potential maintenance issues, a home warranty policy will take care of scheduling both the diagnostic and repair appointments.
There are two main categories that a home warranty plan can cover — home appliances and systems. However, be aware that home warranty providers won’t cover any systems that are shared between units like electrical systems, communal water lines and sewer lines, ductwork, etc. Fortunately, any gaps like these should be covered by your HOA.
Depending on the type of plan level you purchase, a variety of items throughout your condo will be covered. Here’s a general rundown of common standard inclusions:
Condo Home Appliance
Condo Home Systems
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The average premium for a condo home warranty plan ranges between $30 to $60 per month. Ultimately, the amount you’ll pay to cover your condo will depend on the provider you choose, the plan level you select, and whether or not you add any riders to your policy.
Beyond the monthly or annual payment you make for your main plan, you’ll also be responsible for the out-of-pocket service call fee disclosed in any home warranty contract.
This deductible will only be required when you open a claim and request an initial service appointment. Usually ranging between $60 and $125, this upfront payment will compensate the technician dispatched to your home for travel and labor costs.
Accessing your coverage benefits for a condo home warranty works the same way it would for a single-family home, townhome, apartment, etc. Here’s an overview of how the home warranty process will play out should you ever need a repair or replacement in your condo:
To take advantage of your home warranty coverage when a covered item breaks down in your condo, you’ll first need to open a claim with your provider. To do so, you can either call your home warranty company directly or submit online through your customer portal.
Most home warranty companies will update you on the status of your claim and whether it was approved or denied within 48 hours or less of your submission.
Assuming your claim was approved, your service provider will proceed to schedule a diagnostic home visit through one of their in-network contractors. At this appointment, the technician dispatched to your home will assess the issue relating to your claim and report back to your home warranty company with an estimate for the repair or replacement.
Remember that you’ll need to pay the out-of-pocket service call fee at this initial service appointment, so be sure to have that on hand.
Soon thereafter, you’ll hear back from your home warranty provider with the next steps on the maintenance approach they’d like to pursue. An official service appointment will be scheduled at this time.
Once the appliance or system in your condo has been fixed or replaced, you’ll likely be covered by a workmanship guarantee for 30-90 days following the servicing date. If any failures or malfunctions occur during that set timeframe, your provider will be liable to provide any necessary repair work, free of charge.
No. Condo insurance and a condo home warranty are not the same. In fact, even a manufacturer’s warranty is different from these two things. When you first purchase a condo, it makes sense to learn about the coverage you have in place and what you can do should an issue come up.
A homeowners insurance policy protects against particularly catastrophic issues — think hurricanes, fire, tornadoes, etc. Homeowners insurance is often something you must have in place due to your mortgage. Both your mortgage company and insurance company want to make sure that you are covered in the event of a major loss.
While a home warranty is technically a form of damage insurance, it’s designed to cover more mundane issues related to the normal wear and tear of items throughout your condo. With a home warranty, you will help save money on unexpected repairs of home systems and appliances. These repairs come up often, and they require a significant investment.
Most home warranties will have a service fee instead of a deductible. The service fee is what you pay when you have an issue in your home that requires a repair person’s attention. Most of the service fees for home protection plans range between $60-$125, but if you’re on a budget, be sure to compare the prices of multiple providers before choosing.
Once you pay the service fee, the plan will pay for the rest of your repair, up to the plan limit. Certain companies, like American Home Shield, give you some flexibility in what the service fee will cost. Most companies do not charge an additional service fee should you experience more issues with the same appliance or system.
Most home warranty companies offer an appliance plan, a systems plan, and some type of combo plan. There are also additional coverage options for things that may not be included as part of the typical plan.
Depending on what company you choose, the appliances or systems will be picked for you, or you can customize the options slightly to work for your needs. Most of the time, the combo plan will be considered a platinum plan and costs a bit more than the other options. Regardless of your budget, something out there should work for you.
As we mentioned, you will first have to make sure that the home warranty coverage is offered. Chances are, there are at least a few companies that you will be able to choose from in your area.
Once you submit your application and choose your plan, you will typically have about thirty days before your plan will take effect. During this time, if there are any issues with the condo, they will not be covered.
In addition, most plans are not going to cover pre-existing issues. Let’s say, for instance, that your oven is not currently functioning. Even after your 30-day wait period, you will still not be able to submit a request for a repair for that oven. All systems and appliances must be in working order at the beginning of your plan.
Keep in mind that home warranty companies will not cover issues that were your own fault. If, for instance, you put something in a microwave that causes it to be short, that won’t be covered. If the touch panel on your oven stops working at no fault of your own, you can expect full coverage.
The coverage terms for a condo and a traditionally stick-built home are very similar. The biggest difference is that when you own a condo, some of the systems don’t fall within your responsibilities as a resident to cover. Certain larger systems will sometimes be shared amongst other residents in your complex and will already be covered by your HOA if something goes wrong.
However, the plans are essentially identical when it comes to major appliances. Many condos have just as many appliances as a single-family home would have. Protecting yourself from expensive appliance repairs is vitally important, no matter where you live.
At House Method, transparency and trust are our most important values for the reader. We’ve done the homework for you and have researched over 50 home warranty companies so you can have the information you need to make the best choice for your home.
Our team spent hours on the phone speaking to representatives from each home warranty company to get information right from the source. We also dug into the fine print on each company’s service agreement to ensure no detail was left out.
To make the most of our research, we developed an objective rating system to score each home warranty company based on the following criteria:
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