If you are buying a new home in California, there is a good chance it is under builder warranty. While this may sound great, it is important to understand the limitations of this type of warranty, such as what it covers and the length of the warranty.
According to Realtor.com, a builder warranty is different from a home warranty. The home buyer is the one who purchases a home warranty, and it covers not only new homes but also older ones. This is the type of warranty that covers household systems and appliances, while a builder warranty covers the workmanship and materials of the home. A warranty will vary from one builder to another, but common coverages include:
- Foundation, floors, siding and roofing
- HVAC, plumbing, electrical and septic systems
- Windows, doors and glass
While a builder warranty covers a lot of things, it is not responsible for everything. Before signing it, it is a good idea to consult with an attorney and negotiate for better terms if necessary. It is also important to know that a warranty does not last forever. Some only cover defects for six months after buildout is complete, while some may have provisions for a longer warranty on certain structures.
The Federal Trade Commission discusses a home owner should make a warranty claim as soon as possible, as there are time limitations. This should always be in writing, although one can also call to make a complaint. A reputable company will honor the terms of the warranty, but it is a good idea to have documentation of all communications in the event a dispute arises.