A home warranty contract can prevent you from paying hundreds or thousands of dollars on a broken refrigerator or clothes dryer and provide peace of mind that if an important item were to break down, you’d be covered. As long as you keep your home’s appliances and systems well-maintained, there’s no reason that you should have to pay full price for major repairs or replacements.

We’ve looked at the most popular home warranty companies and boiled down their plans and pricing options for easy comparison. Since home warranty costs vary by provider, we recommend getting quotes from a few different companies to help you find the best home warranty for your budget.

Home Warranty Cost Breakdown

A one-year home warranty costs about $300–$600 annually. The standard service call fee is between $75 and $125. A plan with a low monthly cost is ideal if you don’t anticipate filing many claims, while a homeowner with older systems and appliances may select a plan with a lower service fee since they might file claims frequently.

Here is what you need to know about the two main costs associated with home warranties:

  • The monthly cost is the amount you pay every month (or year) for the length of the policy, whether you use it or not.
  • The service fee is more like a co-pay. Every time you need to submit a claim and call a technician to come diagnose a problem, you pay this fee directly to the technician.

Companies like American Home Shield and America’s First Choice Home Club allow you to customize your premium and service fee payments. If you choose to pay a higher service call fee, your premium will be lower, and vice versa. You can make this decision based on the number of claims you see yourself submitting over the length of the policy.

Costs of the Top 4 Home Warranty Companies

ProviderMonthly PremiumService Fee
American Home Shield$39.99–$58.99$75–$125
AFC Home Club$43.18–$59.09$75–$125
Select Home Warranty$35.83–$37.50$60–$75
First American Home Warranty$28.00–$42.50$75

Most companies offer multiple plans with varying monthly costs depending on how comprehensive the coverage is. If you want to get more in-depth with the pricing of each home warranty company, here’s a more detailed breakdown of each company’s policies, how much they cost, and what they cover.


1. American Home Shield: Best Overall

American Home Shield plans cost on average between $39.99–$58.99 a month. AHS also offers a sliding scale service call fee ranging between $75–$125. A higher service fee means a lower monthly premium and vice versa.

Not only is American Home Shield the oldest and most established company on our list, it offers the most comprehensive and flexible coverage.

Pros & Cons of American Home Shield

✔ In business since 1971
✔ Personalized service fee/premium costs
✔ Additional benefits like discounts on appliances

✘ No coverage for standalone freezers
✘ Relatively high premiums

Systems and AppliancesShieldSilver™ShieldGold™ShieldPlatinum™
Air Conditioning
Heating System
Smoke Detectors
Ceiling Fans
Plumbing and Stoppages
Water Heaters
Water Dispensers
Central Vacuums
Ranges, Ovens, and Cooktops-
Clothes Washer-
Clothes Dryers-
Built-In Microwave-
Trash Compactors-
Freestanding Ice Maker-
Garage Door Opener-
Built-In Food Centers-
Coverage Boost --
Roof Leak Coverage --


2. AFC Home Club

AFC Home Club has four comprehensive coverage plans that range between $43–$60 a month. This company’s service call fees also range between $75–$125.

CoverageSystem PlanSilver PlanGold PlanPlatinum Plan
Monthly Premium$43.18$43.18$52.27$59.09
Air Conditioning
Heating System
Water Heater
Electrical System
Plumbing System
Clothes Washer/Dryer
Kitchen Refrigerator
Garbage Disposal
Garage Door Opener
Plumbing Stoppages
Built-In Microwave
Ice Maker


3. Select Home Warranty

Select Home Warranty has one of the cheapest options for a home warranty plan among some of the top providers in the industry. Select also offers a standard $75 service call fee. Although Select Home Warranty doesn’t offer additional coverage options for a fee, it’s the only provider on our list to provide roof coverage, and it comes at no extra cost.

We recommend Select Home Warranty for the budget shopper. This company offers its Platinum Care plan for only $37.50 a month, which works out to a little more than a dollar a day.

To get a free quote from Select Home Warranty, call 888-370-3956 or fill out this simple form.

Pros & Cons of Select Home Warranty

✔ Free roof coverage
✔ Generally offers lowest premium prices
✔ Least expensive full-coverage plan

✘ Low coverage caps
✘ Doesn’t have a mobile app
✘ Only Platinum Care covers plumbing stoppages

CoverageBronze CareGold CarePlatinum Care
Monthly Premium$35.83$35.83$37.50
Clothes Washer/Dryer
Garbage Disposal
Built-in Microwave
Garage Door Opener
Ceiling Fan
Plumbing Stoppages
Air Conditioning
Heating System
Plumbing System
Electrical System
Water Heater


4. First American Home Warranty

First American Home Warranty offers some of the most affordable coverage compared to other providers, though it leaves out key systems and appliances like electrical and ovens in its most basic plan. Both First American plans come with a service call fee of $75 to $100.

CoverageBasic PlanPremier Plan
Monthly Premium$28.00$42.50
Attic and Exhaust Fans
Ceiling Fans
Clothes Washer/Dryer
Garbage Disposal
Instant Hot Water Dispenser
Kitchen Refrigerator
Built-In Microwave
Trash Compactor
Central Vacuum System
Garage Door Opener
Plumbing Stoppage
Water Heaters


What Is a Home Warranty?

A home warranty, also called a home service contract, is a one-year contract that covers repairs or replacements to major appliances or systems in your home that malfunction due to normal wear and tear. It is separate from home insurance, which covers unexpected damage to a house from natural disasters, fire, or theft, and a manufacturer’s warranty, which covers defects in a particular product.

Essentially, a home warranty covers the damage you expect to happen when you use your heating system or refrigerator for its expected lifespan. Parts wear down over time and eventually break from normal usage, and a home warranty provider will usually cover the cost of the part and the labor to fix it. If the damage on your appliance or system is major or the parts are no longer available, the home warranty will typically cover the cost of a replacement.


What Do Home Warranties Cover?

In general, home warranties cover important home appliances and systems and offer additional coverage for outdoor items or related costs.

Appliances Covered

The list of covered appliances differs by company, but here are some of the most common:

  • Kitchen refrigerator
  • Clothes washer and dryer
  • Built-in microwave
  • Dishwasher
  • Garbage disposal
  • Ceiling fan
  • Oven/stove/range/cooktop

The following appliances may also be covered, but you may need to seek out a specialty or premium plan:

  • Standalone freezer
  • Ice maker
  • Central vacuum
  • Garage door opener
  • Smoke detector
  • Exhaust/attic fan
  • Trash compactor
  • Water dispenser
  • Whirlpool bathtub

Systems Covered

The list of systems covered by home warranties is fairly standard, but pay attention to subtleties in wording, like the difference between plumbing systems and plumbing stoppages. In most cases, important systems, like your HVAC system, plumbing, and electrical will be covered.

  • Air conditioning/cooling system
  • Heating system
  • Electrical system
  • Plumbing system
  • Plumbing stoppages
  • Ductwork
  • Water heater

Optional Add-Ons

There are a few items typically not included with standard home warranties, but if you purchase a service contract, you may be able to add them on with an additional fee.

  • Additional refrigerators
  • Pools/spas
  • Well pumps
  • Sump pumps
  • Septic pumps/tanks
  • Septic systems
  • Guest houses

Some home warranty providers may also offer coverage for miscellaneous costs that can be associated with large-scale repair work. Here are a few of those items that may be covered:

  • Building permits
  • Lifting equipment
  • Refrigerant recapture/disposal
  • Haulaway services
  • Code upgrades


What’s Not Covered Under a Home Warranty?

Some items in the home don’t fall under a typical home service contract, such as:

  • Garage doors/door tracks
  • Windows, walls, and doors
  • Sprinkler systems
  • Window air conditioning units
  • Alarm systems/wiring
  • Ornamental fountains

More importantly, there are some types of damage that a home warranty won’t cover. You’ll have to pay for damage that doesn’t fall under “normal wear and tear” yourself. Here are some types of damage or malfunction not typically covered by home warranties:

  • Damage from accidents or misuse
  • Pre-existing conditions (known or unknown)
  • Improper installation or modification
  • Insufficient maintenance

Note: There are exceptions—for example, First American Home Warranty offers an upgrade that includes coverage for improper installation.


How to Get a Quote for Home Warranties

While we’ve given you some pricing from the most popular home warranty providers, the cost of coverage for your house may differ based on the square footage of your house, which coverage plan you choose, and where you live. Contact the above companies to get an accurate price for the cost of coverage for your home.


Frequently Asked Questions

Our Rating Methodology

The This Old House Reviews Team backs up our home warranty ratings and recommendations with a detailed rating methodology to objectively score each provider. We conduct research by speaking with company representatives, requesting quotes, analyzing sample contracts from each company, and conducting focus groups and consumer surveys. We then score each provider against our review standards for coverage, value, trustworthiness and transparency, availability, and customer service to arrive at a final score out of 100.  

To share feedback or ask a question about this article, send a note to our Reviews Team at reviews@thisoldhousereviews.com.