- 4 plans with optional add-ons
- Build-Your-Own home warranty plans available
- Coverage for accessories like pools, spas, and guest units
- Generous coverage caps
- 48 years in the home warranty industry
It’s likely that your home in Alabama is one of the most valuable assets you own, if not the largest. Virtually every new, costly product sold today, from cars to electronics, comes with a warranty that protects the buyer against major problems for a specific period of time. But what about your home?
Buying a house is an expensive proposition and its maintenance costs are, too. In fact, U.S. homeowners can pay more than $9,000 in home maintenance bills every year. A home warranty, otherwise known as home appliance insurance or home repair insurance, is a service contract that protects you—and your wallet—from the unexpected costs of repairs to your home’s systems, appliances, and more.
If you’re looking for a home warranty in Alabama, keep reading to learn about the best home warranty companies in the state, common home maintenance issues faced by Alabama homeowners, and important home warranty buying tips.
Alabama is located in the southeastern region of the United States, otherwise known as the Deep South. It’s bordered by Tennessee, Georgia, and Florida and the Gulf of Mexico to the north, east, and south, respectively. It’s the 30th largest state by area and the 24th most populous.
Alabama’s nickname, the Yellowhammer State, comes from the state bird, but Alabama has other pseudonyms such as the “Heart of Dixie” and the “Cotton State.” The state tree is the longleaf pine and the state flower is the camellia. The largest city in Alabama by population is Birmingham, which is also the most industrialized city in the state. The oldest city is Mobile, Alabama, which was originally founded by French colonists as the capital of French Louisiana in 1702.
It’s not uncommon to see Alabama homes, which feature iconic architectural elements such as wrap-around porches, in well-known home and living publications like Southern Living and Traditional Home. Alabama homes are generally designed to handle the South’s hot, humid weather, and the front porches foster a sense of community that’s quintessential to the American South. According to Zillow, the median home value in Alabama is $133,800, up 4.8% year-over-year, making a home warranty in Alabama all the more important for such serious investments.
Whether your home was built last month or 30 years ago, Alabama homeowners tend to experience a common set of issues and home maintenance-related problems thanks to statewide factors like humidity, hot weather, the frequency of hurricanes, and more. Here are some of the most common home repairs in Alabama:
As you can see, home warranties aren’t just for aging homes. They’re an essential purchase for all homeowners who want to protect themselves from expensive repairs and replacements.
Some new homes come with a builder’s warranty or a third-party warranty. For example, the Federal Housing Authority and the Department of Veterans Affairs require builders to buy a third-party warranty as a way to protect buyers of newly built homes bought with FHA or VA loans. But what about other types of homes?
Most single-family homes are eligible for coverage from a wide variety of third-party warranty companies, but alternative homes like mobile homes, duplexes, condos, and RVs may not be eligible for coverage from all providers. If you own an alternative style home, research whether or not the Alabama home warranty provider you’re interested in provides plan options for the housing type you own.
Home warranties typically cover appliances that fail or have issues due to certain causes. In general, the majority of home warranties provide coverage for:
Similar to providers of other warranty types, home warranty companies that provide coverage to Alabama homes typically offer their plans in clear, understandable tiers. For example:
Select Home Warranty, one of our preferred Alabama providers, offers three tiers of plans: Platinum Care, Gold Care, and Bronze Care. Platinum covers the broadest mix of components and appliances, ranging from the A/C to the washing machine and plumbing system. Gold Care covers slightly less, and Bronze Care covers the most essential appliances in your home, including the refrigerator, washing machine, dishwasher, stove, and oven.
Some Alabama home warranty providers will offer a customizable option that allows homeowners to pick and choose the appliances they want coverage for. American Home Shield is known for this, as they provide the option for customers to “build their own” plan customized to their specific needs. With this plan, customers can choose up to 21 systems and appliances for their personalized coverage.
The average cost of basic home warranty coverage can range from $350–$600 annually, but more comprehensive plans can cost over $1,000. The cost of your plan will depend on the coverage you select as well as other factors, like the year your home was built, whether you live in Birmingham, Mobile, or another Alabama city, and your home’s square footage. The best way to determine the price of a home warranty for your house is to contact a few home warranty providers for customized quotes via phone or online.
Keep in mind that the quote you receive won’t include additional costs, like built-in service fees and deductibles. Home warranty companies typically require an additional fee of $50–$100 for each service call, and the deductible cost will depend on the company and plan you select. If your coverage includes a reasonable deductible and has high coverage caps, it could pay for itself after just one major repair or appliance replacement.
The specific process for receiving coverage from your Alabama home warranty varies from provider to provider, but most companies operate in a similar manner.
When you notice a home system or appliance that’s broken or not functioning correctly, you’ll call the home warranty company. The company will then contact a provider with which it has a business arrangement and the provider will contact you to make an appointment at a time that’s convenient to your schedule.
The provider will then diagnose the problem and determine if you need a repair or replacement. They might contact the home warranty company to ensure the claim is covered under your home warranty plan. If it is covered, the provider will fix the problem, and the home warranty company will pay to replace and install the appliance if it can’t be repaired, depending on your contract’s coverage.
At the end of the process, you’ll be required to pay a service fee for the visit, the price of which can be negotiated at the time you sign up for your home warranty.
For example, if your A/C goes out on a hot summer day, you’d call your provider, schedule the technician’s visit, and hopefully have a repair within a few days. The details of the payment structure, such as whether you’ll be required to pay the air conditioning technician upfront and be later reimbursed by your home warranty company, as well as other out-of-pocket fees such as the deductible and service fee, will depend on your plan.
As we’ve mentioned, it’s important to comb through the fine print of the home warranty plans you’re considering. Many home warranty terms exclude common situations from coverage, often unbeknownst to the consumer at the time the contract is signed.
For example, some policies exclude tankless water heaters, plumbing blockages due to tree roots, humidifiers, window air conditioners, and other home appliances and systems. If the policy is full of exclusions or requires extensive, almost impractical, documentation of your attention to detail with regard to home maintenance in order for coverage to apply, it’s a red flag.
In addition to lowering the impact of costs to common Alabama home appliance replacements and repairs, like the air conditioning, plumbing, and structural issues related to humidity, home warranties offer other benefits that often go overlooked.
A home warranty plan will save you time and effort and prevent you from researching different service providers and scheduling their visits, as you’ll be outsourcing this process to your home warranty company. Additionally, you’ll experience lower out-of-pocket costs for emergency services and unexpected homeownership costs. Home warranties also shine when they’re used to cover repairs and replacements of expensive appliances that aren’t covered by the appliance manufacturer’s warranty.
For busy families who don’t have time to complete DIY repairs or single homeowners who aren’t handy, a home warranty can offer peace of mind. Lastly, if you plan to sell your home within the period that the home’s covered, the warranty is enticing to homebuyers, acting like a seller-paid closing cost.
Below is a review from a customer who has a home warranty in Alabama:
“I think it is awesome that I can put in a ticket at anytime online. They sent an email with the contractor information right away, and in the following two days I got a call from the contractor to come look at my unit (HVAC). I did not like the fact that I have to pay $75 just to get a technician to see my issues (the $55 for every extra pound of refrigerant they charge to my unit, because of EPA regulations) but I am overall very satisfied with the service rendered.” — Angelica Velez, on American Home Shield
While the right home warranty company in Alabama will take some of the stress out of owning a home, the market has become flooded with companies selling all kinds of plans. This can make it confusing for Alabama residents to find quality coverage from a home warranty company that will follow through on its promises. In general, all good home warranty suppliers have the same qualities. Here’s what to consider when shopping for a plan.
A long-standing positive reputation is key.
Perform research on the providers you’re considering by looking into their Better Business Bureau (BBB) ratings, BBB accreditation status, and customer comments on review websites like TrustPilot and Google Reviews. The number of years the company has been in business and any endorsements or partnerships it has with trusted industry leaders are other positive indicators of a solid reputation of quality plans and customer service in the space.
Look at the plans your provider offers.
Some home warranty companies offer just a handful of coverage options, and if you don’t fit comfortably into one of those buckets, you’ll end up with either more or less coverage than you need. The best home warranty companies in Alabama will provide clearly tiered plans with customizable term lengths and add-ons.
Review the coverage caps, deductible costs, exclusions, ongoing maintenance requirements and documentation to qualify for coverage, and other fine print in each plan. Reading through the details ahead of time can save you from a situation where you’re stuck filing a claim for an expensive repair and then having it denied because it’s not covered.
Take a look at unexpected or hidden costs that are woven into the contract.
Most home warranty plans don’t provide blanket protection, meaning that you’ll encounter some out-of-pocket expenses in addition to your monthly payment. For example, some home warranty companies charge per-visit service fees in addition to deductibles. Also, review whether the company requires customers to pay upfront for repairs and wait for reimbursement or pays repair costs directly on your behalf.
Determine if the company states a time frame for repairs and backs it.
This can help you avoid the frustration of signing on with a company that handles repairs excruciatingly slow, leaving you without a day-to-day appliance for weeks or months at a time.
Investigate the pricing of the plans you’re interested in.
Some companies provide sample contracts with accompanying price ranges online. For others, you’ll need to either reach out via phone or type information, like your address, state, and home’s square footage, into an online quote generator.
Additionally, see whether each company allows you to pick coverage by appliance. Plans with this structure can make your coverage more customized because you have the option to cover what’s most important to you. For example, you may choose to cover old appliances with a higher risk of breakdown and forego coverage for newer, lower-risk appliances. In general, the best Alabama home warranty plans will provide customization and flexibility.
To help you keep these factors in mind, here’s a shortlist of what to assess when considering coverage from a home warranty provider:
The best home warranty company in Alabama will depend on your unique needs, budget, and even your address. Use the chart included in this guide as a starting point to research the best provider for your home, considering plan options, quotes, and fine print along the way.
An Alabama home warranty can protect one of the most serious investments of your lifetime. In Alabama, where high, year-round temperatures and humidity can cause water damage, A/C failure, and electrical issues, a home warranty can provide protection for your property and your wallet from costly appliance repairs and breakdowns.
From Birmingham to Montgomery, Mobile, Tuscaloosa, and Auburn, Alabama homes for sale that include home warranty plans tend to sell faster. Most real estate agents in Alabama know this, and they may encourage their clients to include a home warranty with the sale of the home in order to improve the likelihood of an accelerated sale. The main reason for this is that new homeowners enjoy the peace of mind that, if something inside the home breaks after purchase, they’re covered.
Purchasing a warranty for your Alabama home can be an excellent savings and home protection tool, but it’s recommended that you study what each company has to offer based on the criteria covered in this article. Carefully examine each plan to learn about coverage, exclusions, additional costs, and limitations. By knowing the exact parameters of the contract and the reputation of the provider you select, whether American Home Shield, Choice Home Warranty, Select Home Warranty, or another top provider, you’ll avoid unpleasant surprises down the line.
Select Home Warranty reviews tout its comprehensive coverage at an affordable price. Learn more about Select's plans, low prices, and fast claims process here.
2-10 Home Buyers Warranty does what most home warranty companies don't—keep their promise. It could be the most trustworthy home warranty company on the market today. Read our review for the full scoop.
Natalie is a writer based in Raleigh, North Carolina. She enjoys all things creative, from design and decorating to cooking, photography, and gardening, and writes for a variety of digital publications, including her lifestyle blog.