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Does Your Vacation Home Need Home Warranty Coverage?

Should you get home warranty coverage for your vacation home? The short answer is yes.

Just like any other home, appliances and systems in your vacation home will break down over time. Even if you’re not using your vacation home’s dishwasher or air conditioner as much as you do at your regular home, you can still run into problems with them.

That’s where a home warranty contract comes in. Using your home warranty coverage, you will be able to have your vacation home’s covered appliances and systems repaired at little cost, and often with fewer hassles than you’d face trying to have the repairs taken care of independently. Read on to learn why home warranty coverage is a smart move for vacation homes, how vacation home warranty coverage works, and how you can make the most of your home warranty coverage for your vacation home.

Why Vacation Homes Need Home Warranty Coverage

A broken appliance or system can wreck what would otherwise be a great vacation. You might visit the beach in the middle of summer — only to discover that your air conditioning has gone out and you’ll be dealing with sweltering temperatures. Or you might invite your entire family out to your cabin on the lake for a barbecue, then find out that your plumbing is on the fritz. A home warranty can protect you from these situations that can make owning a vacation home less than satisfying.

On top of potentially frustrating situations is the expense associated with repairs. Home repairs can not only leave you feeling hot or wishing you could properly flush your toilet, they can drain your vacation funds in a flash. What you might have been spending on food to stock your vacation home fridge for the week, gas, or souvenirs would be redirected to fixing appliances or systems instead. But with a home warranty, you’ll only need to pay for your contract and a service call fee to have the problem taken care of quickly — a major savings that can help you hang on to your vacation funds.

What a Home Warranty Does for Your Vacation Home

With a home warranty contract for your vacation home, you will have the assurance that if any covered item breaks when you need it most, you will be taken care of. Qualified technicians will come to your vacation home to resolve the problem, whether that means a repair or replacement of the covered item. You’ll pay a service call fee to have the technician visit, but the repair or replacement will be covered under your warranty.

Prompt, Professional Repairs for Your Vacation Home

Home warranty coverage means that you’ll have repairs and replacements of broken items taken care of whether you’re there or not. Using a home warranty, you’ll benefit from using a prescreened professional contractor — rather than spending time calling around finding a good company to use in a town you may not be familiar with.

Home warranty contracts offer convenient and prompt service that is often especially appreciated by home owners who aren’t necessarily in the home. Home warranty repairs can be performed as long as you have a representative there to meet the home warranty contractor, meaning you can have your vacation home repaired even when you’re still at home far away. Think of home warranty coverage as a handyman on demand that you can call from afar to fix problems in your vacation home.

Home Warranty Coverage Offers Protection for Your Investment

A vacation home is an investment vehicle for many owners, and with a home warranty contract, you’ll effectively protect that investment. You’ll be able to repair and replace appliances and systems at little cost.

Home warranty coverage can add up to big savings. The typical home warranty contract will cost between $350 to $500, while experts recommend spending 1% to 4% on home maintenance and repairs annually — at least $2,000 per year for a $200,000 vacation home. Compared to the cost of a home warranty contract, it’s far more expensive to take on repairs on your own for your vacation home.

Home Warranty for Vacation Home Rentals

It’s even more important to protect your investment in a vacation home if you’re using it as a rental as well. You can save yourself the headache of frustrated guests, and even catch a tax break by using a home warranty service for your vacation home.

If you’re renting out your vacation home, you might be able to deal with a broken dishwasher for a few days on vacation, but rental customers will be put off by appliances that aren’t working properly. You can avoid frustrations with a home warranty, as technicians will come out to your vacation home quickly to take care of the problem — potentially even faster than you’d be able to take care of it yourself.

A home warranty contract may also be tax deductible if you rent out your vacation home most of the year instead of using it yourself. This deduction can be claimed in addition to any maintenance and repairs you may perform on the home outside of the warranty coverage.

Making the Most of Your Vacation Home Warranty Coverage

You may not pay much attention to your vacation home warranty coverage, but you’ll want to get the most our of your contract. You can do so by taking these steps:

  • Focus on proper maintenance: Follow the manufacturer’s recommended maintenance schedule for your air conditioner, refrigerator, and any other covered appliance or system in your home. This will ensure that your claims will go through as valid and avoid maintenance related problems that can cause your items to break down.
  • Avoid damage: Repairs due to damage that’s out of the ordinary like a dog chewing on refrigerator coils or children hitting and breaking a radiator will not be covered. So be sure to take care of your covered items.
  • Be picky about technicians: If you have technicians visit your vacation home for maintenance, make sure they’re carefully researched, qualified, and reputable. Faulty workmanship can cause problems with your items.
  • Get an inspection: If your vacation home hasn’t been inspected recently, go ahead and get one. You’ll find out about items that may need repair or attention, and have documentation about the state of your items for the home warranty company to reference if you ever need a repair.

Obtaining Home Warranty Coverage for Your Vacation Home

Home warranties are offered for vacation homes. Owners of a vacation home can apply for home warranty coverage just like any other home.

The age of the home and appliances does not matter for coverage, however, you will need to show that appliances and systems of any age have been properly maintained. An inspection is recommended as a starting point for your home warranty service so that you know which systems and appliances are in good shape and well maintained, and which ones need your attention.

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