First American Home Warranty
Caption: First American Home Warranty

First American Home Warranty Review

As discussed in our Home Warranties Buyer’s Guide, home warranties are intended to provide peace of mind to homeowners who want protection for home-related costs that go beyond homeowner’s insurance. First American Home Warranty offers warranty plans to cover household items such as major appliances and electrical and plumbing systems.

Appliances and systems fail as they age. If the appliance or system is out of manufacturer’s warranty, the homeowner may be looking at hefty repair bills. Homeowner’s insurance covers the structure of the home itself but does not cover the repair or replacement of big-ticket items in your home unless destroyed in an insurable event like a fire or high-wind storm. This lack of coverage can create a large hole in a homeowner’s budget when a home system fails unexpectedly. Home warranties are designed to try to fill these financial holes.

First American Home Warranty serves over 550,000 customers and has 24/7 claims assistance available online and via telephone. They offer plans for homeowners as well as real estate professionals wanting to cover homes they have listed on the market. For homeowners, they provide a Basic and a Premier plan. Plans for real estate professionals have basic and optional coverage but vary based on whether they cover the seller or the buyer of the listing.

Pros
  • Coverage options give flexibility in choosing the coverage that best suits the consumer’s needs
  • Replacement of some covered items that are too damaged to repair
  • Monthly and yearly payment plans
  • Warranty allows the consumer to budget for repairs based on service call fees
Cons
  • Coverage exclusions can be confusing to average consumers due to technical jargon
  • Customers must use the contractor selected by First American Home Warranty

First American Home Warranty Costs

First American Home Warranty plans range in price from $288 to $468 per year. Instead of a deductible per claim as is standard with homeowners insurance, home warranties require a service fee before a contractor investigates a claim. You pay the required fee when the service repair person comes to the property to inspect the situation and make a diagnosis of the problem with the system or appliance. The service fee is charged to cover this home visit. First American Home Warranty has a $75 service call fee although there may be some variation in this amount based on the location of the home, the home size, or the warranty chosen.

First American Home Warranty Products

First American Home Warranty offers two main types of home warranties to consumers. They also have a real estate professional option. For consumer options, First American Home Warranty offers a Basic and a Premier plan. While prices vary based on home size and location, sample quotes we received were $41 per month for the Premier plan and $25 per month for the Basic program. The Basic program covers common appliances while the Premier plan adds in coverage for some home systems such as plumbing, electrical, and heating.

First American Home Warranty also offers add-on coverage for specific items that include pool or spa equipment, well pumps, and central air conditioning at additional costs. They also offer a First Class Upgrade with coverage for accompanying accessories and parts like knobs and interior lighting on microwaves, or faucets attached to plumbing. They also extend add-on coverage for additional types of refrigeration units such as freestanding ice makers or wine refrigerators.

A sample policy is available for review before your purchase a plan. Consumers are encouraged to ask questions about coverage before purchasing.

First American Home Warranty Fast Facts

Coverage Length Cancellation Policy Required Maintenance Pricing
– 12 months
– Coverage begins on the contract effective date
Non-cancelable by
consumer except in agreement with the
company after first
30 days or once a
claim has been made.
The company may cancel
under certain conditions.
A clause in coverage
requires proper maintenance
of covered systems
and appliances.
– Premium $288-$468 per year
– Deductible $75-95

First American Home Warranty Coverage Limitations

While exclusions vary based on the exact plan purchased, some common exclusions are worth noting here. In general, there is no coverage on parts of an appliance or system that do not affect the actual function of the appliance or system. For example, knobs on a stove or shelves in a refrigerator. Also, if a covered system fails, items that are secondary to the system or that are easily movable may not be covered.

Computers, doorbells, televisions, and alarm systems are examples of this type of exclusion should the electrical system fail. Specific causes of failures can result in exclusions as well. For example, there is no coverage for damage due to pests, caused by lack of maintenance, or inappropriate usage of the appliance or system. Also, events such as power surges, smoke, theft, accidents, riot, vandalism, and acts of God are examples of non-covered events. In some cases, these exclusions exist because homeowner’s insurance provides coverage.

first american screenshot

First American Home Warranty Screenshot. Source: First American Home Warranty Homepage

First American Home Warranty Claims

The first step in filing a claim with First American Home Warranty is to review your warranty to determine if you have a covered issue. Once you have done this, call the toll free service number on your warranty or fill out the online service request form on the company’s website. The online form is the better option because you will have documentation of your claim from the start.

From that point, First American Home Warranty will select an appropriate service contractor in your area and assign them to the claim. The service contractor will then contact you directly to schedule an appointment based on their schedule and your availability. The service fee is payable when the contractor arrives at your home. The service contractor will inspect the system or item in question and make a diagnosis as to the cause of the problem.

Once coverage is confirmed, the service contractor will begin repairs, which may require more than one visit. If the system or item in question cannot be repaired, it may replaced. The replacement procedure will vary depending on item or system involved, and details will be discussed with the homeowner by a First American Home Warranty representative.

First American Home Warranty Complaints

First American Home Warranty currently has a 3 ½ star rating on ConsumerAffairs and a “B” rating with the Better Business Bureau. The majority of consumers who report concerns report confusion or issues with understanding what is covered or excluded by the policy. Some were confused about coverage limits as well.

First American Home Warranty Q&A

  • How long do I have to wait before requesting service?
    If you’re a new First American customer, you must wait 30 days before requesting service.

    first american screenshot

  • Can I choose my own contractor?
    No, First American Home Warranty maintains a list of service contractors that they dispatch based on the type of problem and location.

  • What happens if local or state codes have changed since the home system installation?
    First American Home Warranty states they are not liable for upgrades, repairs, inspections, or other costs due to any laws or building codes.

  • What if my covered item breaks beyond repair?
    First American Home Warranty may replace the item. Replacement coverage varies by system, appliance, and plan selected.

  • What if I disagree with a First American Home Warranty decision?
    Try to reach an agreement with the company, as you would with any other product or service. Contact the company, explain why you disagree and have information to support your opinion. Get any promises of resolving the problem in writing. If an agreement is not possible, First American Home Warranty’s policies include an individual arbitration agreement waving class action rights, but you can still have the matter settled in small claims court.

  • Does First American Home Warranty do business in all states?
    No. First American Home Warranty offers coverage in 38 states and the District of Columbia.

Conclusion

First American Home Warranty has been providing home warranties for over 30 years. Their plans include many exclusions, but they do offer add-on coverage that adjusts or eliminates some of these exclusions, which allows the consumer to tailor the warranty to fit their needs. As with any warranty or insurance product, is it vital to understand the terms and conditions of the coverage you are purchasing.

To check a quote from First American, call 877-755-6974 or start a quote online.

First American Home Warranty Reviews

Recent Reviews

July 18 2020 6:36PM

I am having home warranty almost close to a year now, but I am very disappointed so far with service and warranty provided by the FAHW. All my services are either incomplete or I had problems reoccurring again.

The service providers FAH is associated are ok and depends on your luck to get a good one. Technicians are not able to troubleshoot problems and just prefer to replace parts on trial and error mode without understanding root cause of the problem.

No follow-up by FAH after service on the quality of the fix. Perhaps they know about it. Still I have a broken dishwasher and 3 technician changed and still it is not resolved and I don't see FAH even cares to follow up.

Saravanan S.
Pleasanton, CA
July 18 2020 12:11AM

I've been with this company the last 12 and 1/2 years. This is the second time I make a claim. My water heater broke and they told me they will fix it in 24 hours. It has been 4 weeks. I haven't heard anything from them.

I called 10 times. Get the same result. I purchase the water heater at Home Depot have them installed it on my own expense. American Home Warranty they promised to send me a check of $375.

If I know I wouldn't be with this company. This is a joke. I would not recommend it for anybody. I don't want anybody to go through what I go through.

Michael G.
Las Vegas, NV
July 13 2020 10:15PM

I had the company for one year before I ever needed to make a claim. My first claim was for a fan motor for my AC!

I was told they would order the parts and that it would take up to 3 days to come in and that the contractor would be able to pick them up and schedule me another appointment I’m five days shy of a whole month later!

I can’t get any response to this issue! Literally no one will call me back or respond to any emails!! Nothing! I want to scream to tell everyone this company should be sued! They have very illegal business practices. Avoid them at all cost!

Tasha T.
Killeen, TX
July 12 2020 6:33PM

We have been with them for 4 yrs. Never made a claim. Recently there was some electrical issues where half the house was without power. No AC, stove to cook etc. This was an emergency problem because I have health issues with respiratory dz.

It was End of June/early July. So so we had to call an electrician. They came out and said the outside box was fried. He showed me the box with a melted piece of whatever. He first showed me that the box was sparking. He said we were lucky the box didn’t catch the house on fire.

He looked at the inside box and said half of the box had a massive surge. Then noted that the box should have separate fuses to prevent overloading.

So we needed to have the city come out to replace whatever they had to do and inspected the damage and replaced something. Then they gave permission to get a permit for the work.

They told me it was lucky because they also looked at the box. So we had no choice for safety and health issues. This company took care of everything, calling the city, getting the permit and two inspections to be sure all was safe and up to code.

We had to get a window unit until everything was finished. It took 3 days. Very professional. They even put in a whole house surge protector and had to replace a basic in ground rods and wire (lighting rod)? Once all was done the city re-inspected and said all was great.

Of course we were so non-pulsed with the whole situation. I called after everything was completed.

Meanwhile I had called and got the auto system. It couldn’t grasp the situation. While at it I went ahead and set up a claim for the dryer to be repaired and have a ceiling fan looked at. The website said they’re get in touch within 24-48 hours.

After a week I called. My note regarding the electrical situation was gone and the other two requests were ‘in process’. I called again and waited for a human.

Finally I spoke to Vernon. I explained everything. He said he saw nothing on the electrical and that a company was just assigned to fix the dryer. Then I asked about the ceiling fan. Now going on second week. He said he would process immediately.

Then I brought up the electrical note. He said he saw nothing and since a claim wasn’t made they wouldn’t cover anything for this. I explained that we didn’t have time to make a formal claim. I asked, "Why?"

I explained the urgency of the situation and that we were lucky about the possibility of a fire and my health. He kept referring to page 6. Online doesn’t have a page 6. He told me to refer to the booklet. Said we didn’t have a booklet.

I asked what standards were set for emergency contingency. None. Refer to page 6. We went around in circles. Have the guy for the dryer coming tomorrow and according to website the guy for the Ceiling Fan was scheduled for the same day and time.

They haven’t called me to confirm after me calling and sending a message to confirm. Went back to website now say this was processing?

I’m not at all pleased. I’ve tried to find another number to no avail. I’m going to have to send a letter and probably go through mediation. Ridiculous.

David H.
Atlanta, GA
July 08 2020 10:46PM

They try their best to dig into the contractor's report, and find the very word that turn against you. And they refuse to share the exact information from the report, keep that totally confidential to them.

These representatives don't know anything about the systems in the warranty. It's such a horrible experience.

Since they have everything on their side, so the only thing you can do would be wasting the 75 dollars requesting services again and again. What a great business! AVOID IT. DON'T RENEW IT!

Bing B.
Cathedral City, CA
June 05 2020 11:32PM

Boiler issues? I’ve lived through them. Having a broken boiler in the middle of winter isn’t an awesome experience. Good thing my house came with a warranty from First American. They sent someone over to fix my boiler within a few days of my call.

Lilybeth G.
Phoenix, AZ
May 29 2020 6:41PM

We had a saga with our fridge for the last couple of months. We opened a claim with First American that send a technician that barley opened the fridge, said "it is a known issue with LG - you should call them", took his $75 and left.

We called LG and they said that if we have home warranty, the home warranty company should send one of their licensed technician and we could get a new fridge! But this was after our contract was expired and First American said they can send another technician for free - if we renew of course.

Our fridge is ding for the last couple of months, food was thrown many times. We brought another technician that said it is hopeless. So we now had to spent $1,600 + tax (after memorial day discounts) because First American DO NOT look after their customers it seems so.

Nisan B.
San Diego, CA
May 21 2020 10:18PM

When it’s the middle of the winter and your boiler is broken, you need someone who can get there right away. I had a few bad experiences with previous warranty providers but was pleasantly surprised with First American. I called them on Sunday and had my boiler fixed on Tuesday morning.

Julia E.
Mesa, AZ
May 21 2020 5:35AM

This is a company that can't communicate. I have been trying to resolve an issue and their assigned Representative does not respond. All we want is a resolution to our problem, but to no avail. They hire people that know nothing about Customer Service or Satisfaction. The contractor's that they authorize fall into either the cheapest and/or technically limited. I would rate them terrible a (0) but that's not available.

Steve S.
Las Vegas, NV
May 19 2020 2:07AM

They chose the lowest level and cheapest contractors to service your needs. They are extremely difficult to contact and communicate with. They then assign a Representative to handle your issues. The person we were assigned is also next to impossible to communicate with and has no knowledge of your problem.

They offer a minimal buy out and you can never get a competent person to follow-up. We had just suffered a deplorable air conditioning situation when the temperature was 100 degrees and I have a medical condition that requires Air Conditioning. Whether you have been a long time customer or not their efforts to assist you are a zero.

Steve S.
Las Vegas, NV
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