Scoping the market for the best warranty for your home? We’re to help you out. If you’ve heard about the Fidelity National Home Warranty and want to learn some more information, or you’re simply exploring your options, you’ve found yourself reading the right article!Today, we’re going to be providing you with an honest and unbiased review of Fidelity National’s plans, coverages and prices in order to help you make the best decision for you, your family and your home. Ready? Let’s dive straight into it.
National Fidelity Company Overview
For starters, the Fidelity National Home Warranty was founded in 1974 and is based in Concord, California. In 1996, the company was bought by Fidelity National Financial, which was (and still is) the nation’s largest title insurance company. From that point onwards, the company has also purchased other companies including BGP Holdings and HISCO Home Warranty.
The company offers up to four different home warranty plans across 17 states. These are:
According to multiple reports, Fidelity Nation Home Warranty is one of the fastest-growing home warranty companies in America. Though this company frequently advertises itself as a preferred service provider network (which essentially means they work with providers who will have a contract with your home insurer/plan to provide services to you at a discount), no information is available on the size of their providers or whether or not they are reputable.
The home protection coverage from Fidelity National competes with price points of its competitors and starts at around $265 per year. Though they’re reasonably priced and this is attractive to many homeowners, this company does have many complaints and poor customer reviews on the internet, particularly with regards to claims processing handling and general customer service.
A plus point here, however, is that Fidelity National’s home warranty programs cover many things that aren’t typically covered by homeowners’ insurance, including appliances and household systems that tend to go unfeatured in competitor’s warranties, such as your AC system.
What are the Available Plans?
If you’re a homeowner and you want to purchase a home warranty from Fidelity National, you have the opportunity to take your pick from up to four plans, though the availability of these plans does very much depend on which state you are living in. Even though home warranties from Fidelity National can only be purchased when you’re buying a home (not renting), each plan will last you for 12 months and will be effective immediately upon purchase.
In addition to the four standard plans, Fidelity National also has plenty of optional coverages that can be available to you for an additional cost. Thanks to this, Fidelity Nation allows you to customize your coverage according to your budget, family, and home type. For example, though Fidelity National’s standard price is geared towards single-family houses only, they do offer coverage for other homes including condos, mobile homes, and townhouse complexes, too.
What are the Advantages and Disadvantages?
- They are known for their affordability, with coverage starting at just $265 per year
- There are four plans available for you to choose from, including multiple additional coverage options for an additional price
- All service providers that Fidelity National work with are insured
- Out of the 50 states in America, Fidelity National only provides its services to 17 of them
- Across the internet, there are hundreds of complaints of poor response times, poor customer service and low complaints handling satisfactory rate
- The number of service providers isn’t disclosed, nor is whether they are trustworthy
What do the Plans Exclude?
There are many items excluded from Fidelity National home warranties. Each plan will only cover the appliances and systems specifically named in the provisional plan or documents, which will be made explicitly clear to you before accepting.
How Much will it Cost?
The prices of Fidelity National’s warranty plans do vary from state to state, which is something you need to be aware of. In general, each state offers different prices for different homes, including detached single-family homes, townhouses, condos, and mobile homes. The prices of each plan start at $265 per year, with the more comprehensive plans for single-family homes across most states costing you around $420 per year. Still, this is pretty affordable and places Fidelity National towards the lower end with regards to the price point, making it an ideal choice for families on a budget. However, if you request a service or callout, you will also be responsible for paying out a $75 service fee.
Important side-note: after just a quick scan on BBB (an organization that helps consumers find a company that you can trust) many customers have reported to the BBB that, when they filed claims, they were charged for hidden costs that they were not aware of prior.
Payout Caps and Limitations:
Payout caps and limitations will vary depending on the appliance or system. These will be made clear to you when reading through the provisional documents and should be reviewed carefully to make sure that you agree, as you will be entering into a legally binding contract that will make you responsible for repair or replacement charges that exceed plan limits or are an item (s) in the excluded list.
How Long is the Repair Time?
When you file a complaint, Fidelity National will contact a third-party service person from their network within 48 hours. Even though this may seem pretty quick, Fidelity National does not specify anywhere how long the service provider has to contact you. For this reason, many customers have stated that the service or maintenance usually takes up to a week before they gain a response.
Though there can be a time delay, it is worth noting that all service providers registered with Fidelity National Home Warranty are required to be licensed contractors for the trades they service and also to be insured.
Customer Service, Claims, and Complaints Handling:
If you do have a negative experience and wish to make a complaint, you can do so by making a phone call or you can access their website to speak to an agent.
While Fidelity National pride themselves on quick customer service, BBB reviews indicate that same-day service is few and far between, with some states having to wait for up to several days before getting a response.
Fidelity National’s service agreement also claims that the company will attempt to make emergency service requests priority and ensure they are dealt with in a timely manner, but it does not define what ‘emergency service’ includes, or offer guidance on what customers should expect.
Also, even though Fidelity National Home Warranty has an A+ rating from the BBB, there are hundreds and hundreds of complaints from customers.
Does Fidelity National offer Warranties to Real Estate Agents?
Fidelity National has not made this explicitly clear whether or not they offer warranties to real estate professionals. However, Fidelity National does make marketing materials available to real estate professionals, but the company does not appear to offer plans that are targeted towards being tailored to real estate agents. If you own real estate and are interested in taking out a warranty plan with Fidelity National, we urge you to contact a representative directly.
An Alternative Choice: Choice Home Warranty
Keeping your options open? That’s perfectly understandable. An alternative is the Choice Home Warranty, which is also one of the largest and most established home warranty companies in the country. While Choice Home is available in about 47 states, which is more than Fidelity National, Choice has racked up plenty more complaints and bad reviews online.
If you already own your home and are looking to purchase a home warranty, Fidelity National may not be an option, as we couldn’t find any way to purchase coverage except when you're in the process of buying a home. Choice Home Warranty has protection plans for buyers, sellers, and homeowners, making it an option that is more versatile than Fidelity National.
After reading our review, we’re hoping that you feel a lot more clear on whether or not Fidelity National is a good match for you and your circumstances. To recap, if you’re buying a home warranty to protect appliances and systems that aren’t usually covered by the standard homeowner insurance, Fidelity National is an ideal choice for you to consider. However, if you’re already a homeowner, we recommend taking a look at alternatives such as Choice, as they offer warranties and plans to those who have already purchased a home (Fidelity National only offers warranties to about-to-be homeowners making a close).
It’s also important to take into consideration that many customers have been pulled in by the initial affordability of Fidelity National, only to be left dumbfounded after being charged for hidden costs they weren’t made aware of.
Regardless, each home insurance company will come with their advantages and drawbacks. To ensure you make the wisest choice, no matter what company you decide to purchase a warranty from, we strongly suggest making sure to take the time to read the fine print for limits, exclusions, and potential hidden strings.