Author Topic: Home warranty for small-time rental property owners?  (Read 1204 times)

waltworks

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Home warranty for small-time rental property owners?
« on: May 09, 2014, 09:04:18 AM »
I'm hoping some of you with more experience will chime in. I have two properties that I rent out, both with long-term, excellent tenants - but the houses are older (100 years old, albeit with updates) and do require regular work. Some of this work (major electrical, plumbing, HVAC problems) is beyond my skill set but I can often diagnose simple stuff myself.

Until last month I lived within a 5 minute bike ride of both properties, so I simply took care of anything that came up by riding over and fixing (or evaluating as beyond me). Now we've moved about 20 miles away and I can't quickly/easily just wander over to fix things.

I'm considering extending the home warranty that both properties have (a service provided by the title company when we purchased for the first year) in order to essentially hedge my appliance/HVAC/electrical/plumbing costs. They charge $60 for a service call (no matter how serious or trivial) which IMO is cheaper than just my time to go take a look myself. I've used the HW a few times and been pleased with the responsiveness and service. Cost per year is approximately $350 per house.

Does anyone else use home warranties this way? I see them as a cheap way to do self-management and still get relatively cheap rates on professional work when needed. But maybe I'm throwing my money away. Any thoughts?

-W

arebelspy

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Re: Home warranty for small-time rental property owners?
« Reply #1 on: May 09, 2014, 09:09:21 AM »
It's a decent strategy, one I'd consider if I was trying to be an out of state landlord.

I personally don't use them because I'd rather call a plumber/electrician/handyman myself (I don't do any work myself).

I find it's cheaper to pay for the repairs than the home warranty, so you come out ahead (money-wise) without.

But there are certain advantages (reduces that extra bit of work).
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