If you maintain your home appliances, it should follow that they will perform efficiently and last as long as you need them. Unfortunately, it does not always work that way. Appliances break down at some point, some sooner than others, and require expensive repairs. Often, the cost of the repair will be nearly the same as the price tag for a new one. This is where home appliance maintenance plans become useful. You can purchase a plan so that the insurance will cover the cost of repairing your appliances if they break down. The premiums are low and often well worth it as compared to high repair costs.

If you decide to purchase a maintenance plan, you will want to find out some key information before settling on one. Consider asking the following critical questions:

  • How long does the appliance manufacturer’s plan last? – Most manufacturers offer warranties on their products. They may range from 90 days to up to several years. Find out when your manufacturer’s warranty expires before you purchase your own maintenance plan.
  • Who performs the service? – Most maintenance plans provide their own repair technicians. In some rare cases, maintenance plans will allow you to have a say in the choice of technicians. Find out who will provide service and check the company’s credentials and reviews.
  • What appliances and services are covered? – You should know just what you are getting when you purchase a plan. Learn the amount of the deductible and find out what will be covered by the service. Some providers cover only routine maintenance but will charge you for major repairs. Also, find out who shoulders the cost of the parts.
  • What is the cancellation policy? – While you will likely be very happy with your maintenance plan, anything could happen. Understand the policy for cancelling your plan should the need arise.
  • What is the standard price? –The cost of repair for the first years is generally cheaper than the repairs done in the third or fourth years. Clarify the particulars of the prices over time.
  • How long will the repair take? – Find out how quickly a provider will respond to your repair needs. Some may guarantee a 24-hour response; others may come later.

In order to settle on the best plan for your needs, shop around and ask plenty of specific questions.