Best customizable plans
- Provides generous coverage caps for consumers
- Real estate agents can save money when they buy warranty coverage for multiple properties
- Customers can receive discounts on name brand appliances
- 24/7 customer service
With almost 50 years of experience, American Home Shield (AHS) is one of the most trusted companies in the home warranty industry. They provide some of the most comprehensive coverage, protecting major home systems and appliances and allowing customers to customize their own plan.
Below you’ll find House Method’s 2020 review of American Home Shield. We compare coverage and pricing of different AHS home warranty plans, stack the company against other home warranty competitors, provide a few American Home Shield reviews, and help you determine if AHS is the best home warranty for you and your home.
|The oldest and most trusted home warranty company in the industry||Doesn’t let customers choose their own technician|
|Allows customers to build their own plans||Doesn’t provide coverage in Alaska|
|Ability to choose the service fee you want to pay|
American Home Shield offers four plans—an Appliance Plan, a Systems Plan, a Combo Plan, and a Build-Your-Own Plan—at an average cost of $50–$60 per month. AHS also offers optional coverage at an additional cost for items like septic pumps and guest units.
Appliance Plan: $49.99 per month ($599.88 per year). This plan covers 10 appliances, such as your refrigerator, oven, and cooktop.
Systems Plan: $49.99 per month ($599.88 per year). Under the Systems Plan, 12 of your home’s major systems are covered.
Combo Plan: $59.99 per month ($719.88 per year). This AHS plan covers everything in the Appliances and Systems Plan for the best price.
Build-Your-Own Plan: $54.99 per month ($659.88 per year): The cost of this plan will depend on the appliances and systems you choose. You can select up to 10 items to include in your coverage. Note: for every item over this limit, you’ll pay $2.00 extra per item.
Optional Add-Ons: AHS offers coverage for five additional items that you can add on to any plan. The prices for these add-ons vary, but you can see an estimate when receiving a quote online.
*Note: With American Home Shield, you have the power to set the trade service call fee amount when a contractor comes to assess the appliance or system in question. You have three options: you can pay $75 per service call (the cheapest option), $100 per service call, or $125 per service call (this will lower your monthly payment).
To get a better idea of what comprehensive home warranty coverage truly looks like, our team surveyed 1,000 homeowners and asked which home systems and appliances were most valuable to them. Once the results were in, we took the responses and compared them to what each home warranty provider covers.
From our findings, we gathered that the top three appliances most important to a homeowner are the refrigerator, the oven/stove/range, and the clothes washer and dryer. The top three systems that hold the most importance are the electrical, plumbing, and air conditioning.
Here’s what specific coverage looks like under an American Home Shield plan:
All parts and components of your refrigerator that break down due to normal wear and tear are covered, but freestanding freezers, multi-media centers, and wine chillers aren’t covered. Note: AHS will pay customers up to $3,000 for a refrigerator repair or replacement.
American Home Shield covers all parts and components of ovens, ranges, and cooktops. If you want coverage for these appliances, you can opt into an Appliances Plan or Combo Plan.
Clothes washer and dryer
Did you know that the average cost to repair or replace a washer and dryer without a home warranty can range anywhere between $600–$700? Lucky for you, all components and parts of a clothes washer and dryer are covered under an American Home Shield warranty.
Under AHS electrical system coverage, all components and parts including lighting fixtures and built-in exhaust/attic fans are covered. Items not covered include security wiring, telephone wiring, circuit overload, and faceplates.
For the most part, American Home Shield offers pretty extensive plumbing coverage. Leaks and breaks of water, drain, gas, waste or vent lines; toilets; showerheads; diverter valves; permanently installed sump pumps (ground water only); and built-in bathtub whirlpool motor, pump, and air switch assemblies are all covered.
Similar to Choice Home Warranty plumbing coverage, AHS doesn’t cover caulking and grouting, septic tanks, saunas, and stoppages caused by collapsed vent or sewer lines outside of the home.
All components and parts of the following air conditioning systems are covered: ducted central electric split and package units, geothermal units, wall air conditioners, and mini-splits. Window units, water towers, well pumps, and chillers are not covered.
Coverage starts 30 days after you purchase a contract with American Home Shield and lasts for exactly one year after it begins. If you acquired the plan in a real estate transaction, coverage begins the day of closing.
Before coverage ends, you’ll be notified of a plan renewal 60 days prior to the expiration of your contract. Unless you notify AHS that you don’t want to continue your plan, you’ll be charged the applicable plan fees and your contract will automatically renew.
One of the main differences between American Home Shield and their competitors is the leniency when it comes to coverage limits. AHS doesn’t place a limit on the number of covered repairs during the length of your contract and offers coverage even if an appliance or system has been improperly installed, insufficiently maintained, or mismatched.
If you read the fine print of the American Home Shield agreement, you’ll learn that if AHS is unable to repair or replace a covered item, the company may offer money for you to repair or replace the item yourself. Note: AHS is not liable for matching the brand, dimensions, or color of home systems or appliances.
Review the terms of your desired plan before you sign up for a home warranty with American Home Shield, so you know what’s covered and what’s not. A sample contract of an American Home Shield home warranty is available online.
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American Home Shield is not available in Alaska. If you live in that state, check out our reviews on the best home warranty companies in Alaska to find a home protection plan that’s right for you.
If you’re looking to customize your home warranty coverage, American Home Shield is a great choice. They’re one of the only home warranty companies in the U.S. that lets customers pick and choose what systems and appliances they want to include in their plan. Not to mention, AHS leaves it up to customers to determine the service fee they want to pay ($75, $100, or $125). A higher service fee will get you a lower monthly payment, while a low service fee will result in higher monthly premiums.
Additionally, AHS offers a 30-day workmanship guarantee, so if there’s an issue with the repair or replacement within 30 days of service, the company will send a contractor back out to your home for free—we think that’s a pretty good sign of trustworthiness.
Regarding company reputation, American Home Shield founded the home warranty industry 50 years ago and is the oldest home warranty company on record. It’s also a founding member of the National Home Service Contract Association.
Still not convinced of the company’s trustworthiness? Here are a few awards that the company has won over the years:
It’s also worth noting how efficient the AHS claims process is. Once your claim is approved, a customer service representative or contractor will get in touch with you directly. American Home Shield claims that it approves and assigns professionals to a customer’s service request within the first 24 hours 98% of the time—this is way faster than Choice’s 48–96-hour timeline.
In sum, we believe that American Home Shield has a combination of factors that make it a great choice for consumers—extensive coverage that can be personalized, excellent customer service, and years of experience.
5.0 / 5
Breadth of coverage
4.0 / 5
3.3 / 5
4.5 / 5
4.8 / 5
4.0 / 5
4.0 / 5
As a consumer, you probably don’t have the time to sit around and sift through the hundreds of reviews left by American Home Shield customers. That’s where we come in. At House Method, we go through user complaints, reviews, and ratings of each home warranty company and compile that information in a chart that’s easy for you to understand.
Below, we’ve included American Home Shield ratings compared to the industry average.
|Reviewer||American Home Shield Ratings||Industry Average Ratings|
|Average # of Reviews||Average Score||Average # of Reviews||Average Score|
With 50 years of experience, American Home Shield is the oldest and one of the most trustworthy home warranty companies on the market. They have a solid network of 15,000 professional contractors that span across the U.S. and provide coverage that’s customizable to you and your specific home coverage needs.
American Home Shield covers major home systems and appliances, like your refrigerator, electrical, and plumbing. They offer four plans:
Optional add-ons include a pool, spa, guest units up to 750 square feet, and well and septic pumps.
Plans cost $50–$60 per month. In general, coverage costs will vary based on the homeowner’s location, the plan they choose, and whether they add on any optional coverage.
Customers are also required to pay a service fee for every service request that’s approved. Trade service fees range from $75 to $125. Customers can opt for a lower service fee for a high premium or vice versa.
Like other home warranty companies, American Home Shield does not require a home inspection to grant customers coverage. The age of your home and its systems and appliances will not affect coverage either.
Although not required, a home inspection may be useful in the case that you must prove a pre-existing condition is unknown to you since the majority of home warranties do not cover pre-existing conditions.
Yes, you can cancel your AHS plan at any time. The company will refund your contract fees if you cancel within the first 30 days of coverage. If you cancel after that, the provider will refund you a prorated amount for the remaining duration of your coverage term.
You can make a service request as early as 30 days after you sign up for your warranty. If you purchased coverage during a home sale, your coverage starts on closing day.
AHS plans do not cover septic tanks. However, they offer first-year customers non-renewable coverage of the sewage ejector pump for septic systems, which includes mainline stoppages that can be cleared without excavation. The septic tank will be pumped once during the contract coverage term if the stoppage is due to backed up septic. Exclusions apply.
Yes, American Home Shield includes electrical coverage under its Systems Plan. With this plan, the company will pay $1,000–$1,500 per covered item.
Under the Systems Plan, AHS will offer a repair or replacement for your furnace. It’s up to the company to decide whether to repair, replace, or reimburse customers for any of the systems that are explicitly written into the plan.
A home warranty with American Home Shield is definitely worth it if you’re a homeowner who wants to protect your major home systems and appliances. AHS has generous coverage limits and competitively priced plans, so you could save hundreds of dollars by buying a home warranty instead of paying for repairs and replacements out of pocket.
House Method gives American Home Shield 4.28 out of 5 stars. Since AHS founded the home warranty industry, we think the company knows what it’s doing. We also appreciate the responsiveness its customer service has shown on the Better Business Bureau (BBB) and other review sites by actively responding to complaints. What’s more: you can’t beat the generous coverage caps AHS has on its services and the ability to customize your own coverage.
American Home Shield is a good choice for you if…
On the other hand, AHS might not be your first choice if…
Covers cost to dispose of broken items
First month free (promotion)
At House Method, transparency and trust are our most important values for the reader. That’s why we took the time to create an objective rating system and score each home warranty provider according to our methodology. Our team spent hours on the phone speaking to representatives from each home warranty company to get information right from the source.
Our rating system involves a weighted, 100-point scale that scores home warranty companies on plans offered, coverage, state availability, cost, trustworthiness, customer service, and unique benefits.
For more details, check out our affiliate disclosure and rating methodology.
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