In our experience servicing rental properties in Phoenix, purchasing a Home Warranty Policy on your rental is a poor idea especially if you are interested in retaining your tenant for longer than the initial 12 month lease term. Home Warranty companies typically utilize sub par vendors who agree to steep discounts just to get the volume of work. As a result, the vendors typically schedule home warranty work in the last open time slot so they can fill the earlier slots with customers who are paying full price. This type of service leads to very frustrated tenants who often have to wait longer than what is really acceptable for service. Additionally, since the vendors are sub par it is not uncommon for them to need to be dispatched multiple times in an effort to actually complete the repair - this again leads to tenant frustration. If however you are still set on purchasing a home warranty we have compiled a list of the four major players in Phoenix from poor to horrendous.
1. One Guard- They are quick to respond on the phone and have the most competent vendors however frequently vendors have to be sent back out for the same problem multiple times but eventually they do get the repair completed.
2. Old Republic- This company seems to have improved a bit over the last couple of years and they have a pretty efficient online system. However vendors have to be called numerous times to actually complete repairs once approval has been received.
3. American Home Shield- If you chose this company plan on always paying more than just the service fee as each repair always has a competent that isn't covered or needs to be "updated to code". They do have a cash option for several repairs so this is the best option BUT again if you are going to use the cash option might as well not get the warranty.
4. First American Home Buyers Protection- The absolute worst! 30-45 minute wait time guarantee on all calls. Unfortunately we have had to use this company for several a/c problems this summer during high heat times (100-115 degrees) and every time, the vendor has not correctly fixed the problem on the first call out. Then when you call them to try to get a new vendor assigned they won't.
If you are interested in spending a lot of time on the phone and getting completely aggravated, then a home warranty is the way to go.