Sears Home Warranty Review

Expensive, responsive home warranties

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Sears Home Warranty

Sears Home Warranty

Investopedia’s Rating
3.6

Our Take

Sears is one the most recognizable brands in America. Or rather, it was until 2018, when the company filed for bankruptcy and was acquired by Transformco. At that point, Sears had been offering home warranties for more than 20 years (since 1999), and the company’s new owners continue to use the brand name to do so.

Sears home warranties aren’t great. Though the company offers wide coverage across the US (48 states) and fast response times (a claimed 2 hours), they don’t let you choose your own repair person and don’t offer policies for buyers and sellers. Worst of all, their policies are significantly more expensive than their competitors.

  • Pros & Cons
  • specifications
Pros & Cons
Pros
  • Fast response times: as little as 2 hours

  • High payout caps: up to $50,000

  • Wide coverage: 48 states across the US

Cons
  • Significantly more expensive than the average home warranty

  • Recent acquisition by Transformco makes it difficult to assess customer satisfaction

  • You cannot choose your own repair person

specifications
Website
https://www.searshomeservices.com/home-warranty
Year Founded
N/A
Average Annual Cost
$719.88
Service Fees
$75 - $100
Response Time
2 - 24 hours
Payout Cap
$50,000 Annual
Coverage Area
AL, AR, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DE, DC, FL, GA, IA, ID, IL, IN, KS, KY, LA, MA, MD, ME, MI, MN, MO, MS, MT, NC, ND, NE, NH, NJ, NM, NV, NY, OH, OK, OR, PA, RI, SC, SD, TN, TX, UT, VA, WA, WI, WV, WY
Out of Network Technician
No
Pricing Available Online
No
Sample Contract Available
Yes
Waiting Period
No
Why Trust Us
38
Providers reviewed
35
Criteria considered
875
Data points analyzed
59
Primary data sources used
Investopedia collected key data points from several home warranty providers to identify the most important factors to customers. We used this data to review each provider for cost, availability, coverage options, and other features to provide unbiased, comprehensive reviews to ensure our readers make the right decision for their needs.

Sears filed for bankruptcy in 2018, and was acquired by Transformco. The company continued to offer home warranties throughout this period.Sears Home Warranty has a slightly higher-than-average monthly cost when matched to its competitors. However, plans include some extras such as a free heating and cooling maintenance check every year. We reviewed Sears Home Warranty based on cost, coverage, caps, and reviews. 

According to our research, the most important feature to consumers when choosing a plan is its cost, with 74% of respondents naming this as the most important factor. Other important factors include service fees (63%), speed of response (48%), and pricing information being available online (46%). Our reviews thoroughly consider all these factors, as well as exclusions and payout caps, to help you make an informed decision when choosing a home warranty company.

States Covered

Sears offers home warranties in 48 states across the country. You can get a Sears home warranty for a property in any of the following states:

  • AL
  • AR
  • AZ
  • CA
  • CO
  • CT
  • DE
  • DC
  • FL
  • GA
  • IA
  • ID
  • IL
  • IN
  • KS
  • KY
  • LA
  • MA
  • MD
  • ME
  • MI
  • MN
  • MO
  • MS
  • MT
  • NC
  • ND
  • NE
  • NH
  • NJ
  • NM
  • NV
  • NY
  • OH
  • OK
  • OR
  • PA
  • RI
  • SC
  • SD
  • TN
  • TX
  • UT
  • VA
  • WA
  • WI
  • WV
  • WY

47% of our 538 survey correspondents said that coverage and support was the most important aspect of a home warranty, so make sure a company covers your home state first, before considering other factors. Sears offers wide coverage across the US.

Available Plans

Sears Home Warranty offers a choice of three plans: one for appliances, one for systems, and a “whole home” plan which includes both.

In addition to the warranty coverage, the company offers some added benefits, such as a free yearly maintenance check on heating and air cooling systems, a discounted oil change and tire rotation, and discounts on repairs that aren’t covered under the warranty plan. 

The company also allows you to purchase additional coverage for things like well pumps and stand-alone freezers. One of the other options is that you can purchase an Appliance plan and then add additional coverage for items off of the System plan, or vice versa. As an example, you could purchase the Appliance plan and then buy coverage for your central air conditioning system, or buy the System plan and then choose to cover your refrigerator as well. 

Here is what each plan covers:

  Appliance Plan System Plan Whole Home Plan
Refrigerator with Icemaker  
Built-in Dishwasher  
Washer  
Dryer  
Range  
Cooktop  
Oven  
Built-in Microwave  
Range Exhaust Fan  
Built-in Trash Compactor  
Central Air Conditioner  
Central Heating  
Plumbing System  
Water Heater  
Water Softener  
Faucets & Toilets  
Garbage Disposal  
Plumbing Stoppages  
Electrical System  
Ceiling Fans  
Garage Door Opener  
One Heating and One Cooling Preventive Maintenance Check Every Year Included Included Included
Discounts on Appliance Repairs N/A 25% N/A
Discounts on HVAC and Water Heater Repairs Save 25% N/A N/A
Discounts on Appliance, HVAC and Water Heater Repairs during 30-Day Waiting Period Save 25% Save 25% Save 25%
Discounted Oil Changes at Sears Auto Centers Included Included Included

This coverage is standard for home warranty plans, neither much more extensive nor less so than most of Sears’ competitors. The ability to mix and match these plans is a welcome addition that may suit some homeowners, but as we will see this comes at a cost.

Real Estate Plans

Some home warranty companies offers plans specifically designed for real estate professionals, or those aimed at people who are buying or selling property. Sears offers neither. While that won’t matter if you are just looking for standard homeowner warranties, it does limit the flexibility of these policies.

Plan Pricing

During our research, we found that home warranty customers really value transparent pricing information. Unfortunately, though Sears provides a sample contract for potential customers, they do not allow you to see pricing information without contacting the company for a quote.

For this review, we contacted Sears and asked them for a quote for all three of their plans for four of the most populous states in the nation: California, Florida, New York, and Texas. Here are the prices that Sears provided:

  Appliance Plan Systems Plan  Whole Home Plan 
California $599.88 $719.88 $839.88
Florida  $599.88  $719.88  $839.88 
New York  $599.88  $719.88  $839.88 
Texas  $599.88  $719.88  $839.88 

These prices are high. Very high, in fact, compared to other home warranty companies. During our research, we found that the average cost for a home warranty in the US is about $574. This makes Sears’ most basic plan more expensive than the average, and their “whole home” plan more than $250 more expensive than comparable plans offered by other companies.

There are some other costs involved with this type of policy, as well. All home warranty providers charge a service fee, and the industry-wide average service fee is about $82. This is due each time you call out a technician to fix an appliance. Sears allows you to choose between a $75 per service call, or one of $100. Neither of these options represents particularly good value, especially considering the high monthly cost of these home warranties.

51% of our survey correspondents said that pricing information was the most important piece of information they need when choosing a home warranty policy, and 70% of survey correspondents said that the monthly or annual cost of a plan was more important to them than service fees. Sears home warranties are some of the most expensive we’ve seen.

Optional Coverage 

Once you have enrolled in the plan of your choice, Sears Home Warranty allows you to add additional coverage. Prices are not available until after enrollment, but the company were able to provide us with the following quotes:

Optional Coverage Annual Price 
Pool or Spa with Heater $190
Septic Tank with Pumping  $60 
Stand-alone Freezer  $36
Sump Pump  $60 
Well Pump  $90 

Plan Exclusions

Sears Home Warranty covers appliances and systems regardless of age, brand, or where you bought them. These plans cover most breakdowns that may occur, however, there is a long list of exclusions on both appliances and major home systems, so you should thoroughly read your policy to understand what is not covered. 

For example, electric baseboard units are covered, but only if they are your primary heat source. The valve on your refrigerator that leads to your ice maker and water dispenser is covered, but the line to the refrigerator is not; neither is the actual ice maker or water dispenser. These exclusions are not unusual and are considered standard for the home warranty industry.

Payout Caps

Sears Home Warranty offers a generous payout cap of $10,000 per claim and an annual payout claim of $50,000. These are relatively generous payout caps in comparison to other home warranty policies, and provide a good level of coverage for most homeowners.

However, there are specific caps on specialized or commercial-grade items. This limit includes $1,000 per appliance per term for items that are “commercial-like or ultra-premium” and $1,500 per term for “systems that have been converted from coal-to-oil, coal-to-gas, or oil-to-gas; or for hot water or steam heating systems including radiators, vent pipes/lines, or oil-fired forced air systems.” 

We recommend reading over the payout caps carefully to ensure that you understand the limits for your appliances and systems. 

27% of our survey correspondents said that getting the maximum payout cap is important to them when choosing a home warranty policy. Sears home warranties have relatively generous payout caps.

Claim Response Times

Sears told us that they have very fast response times: they said that you are typically referred to a service technician within two hours when your claim is made during business hours. 

Requests made after business hours, on weekends, or holidays have a 24-hour response time. This is a faster turnaround time when compared with the industry standard of 24 to 48 hours. 

All repairs and replacements require approval in advance and Sears Home Warranty reserves the right to select the service provider that will make the repairs. The company does not specifically state that you cannot use your own service provider, although it does state in the contract that they will not pay for repairs unless you receive their prior express consent. If you wish to use someone outside of their network, it is advised that you discuss this option with them first to ensure that you will have coverage.

34% of our survey correspondents said that choosing their own technician was important to them when choosing a home warranty policy. Most home warranty companies have started offering this in recent years, but Sears does not.

Customer Service and Claims

Support is available 24/7 and filing a claim is a relatively easy process. You can do that: 

  • By calling 855-256-2467 
  • By submitting a claim through their website at Sears' preferred vendor, Cinch Home Services

Once the claim is made, expect authorization in as little as two hours during regular business hours or within 24 hours if made during non-business hours.

Complaints and Third-Party Assessments

When it comes to customer satisfaction, the recent history of Sears makes it difficult to asses how well they are serving their customers. 

When we last reviewed the company in 2019, they were not doing very well. At that time, we found that the majority of customer reviews of the company were negative. Complaints ranged from issues with customer service representatives to service providers not showing up or taking too long to make repairs.

Since then, the company has been acquired by Transformco. The BBB rating for Sears is therefore now that of their parent company. For what it is worth, this rating is very high (an A+, the best possible rating). However, it’s unlikely that this is an accurate representation of the service offered to home warranty customers. In other words, proceed with caution.

Sears Home Warranty vs. American Home Shield Warranty

Let’s compare the service offered by Sears with that provided by American Home Shield Warranty. American Home Shield, having been founded in 1971 and with more than 9,000 BBB reviews to their name, are well established in the industry. 

Here’s how the two companies compare:

  American Home Shield Sears Home Warranty
Average Cost of Plan $579.88 $719.88
# of Plans Available Three Three
Customer Satisfaction, BBB score (and number of reviews) 2.42 / 5
(9,668)
1.03 / 5
(1,215)
Service Fee (average) $100 $100
States covered 49 (excludes AK) 48

As is evident from this table, the main difference between Sears and the competition is price. The company seems to offer fairly standard home warranties in most ways, with the exception that it is significantly more expensive than its competitors. In the absence of a compelling reason for this higher price, it makes it difficult to recommend Sears above the competition.

Final Verdict

Sears is one the most recognizable brands in America, and this name recognition might help these home warranties to attract customers despite their shortcomings. However, in our research we found that Sears home warranties aren’t great. 

Though the company offers wide coverage across the US (48 states) and fast response times (a claimed 2 hours), they don’t let you choose your own repair person and don’t offer policies for buyers and sellers. Worst of all, their policies are significantly more expensive than their competitors. When it comes to customer service, the recent history of the company (bankruptcy, followed by acquisition) makes it difficult to judge how well it is performing.

Overall, we don’t recommend Search home warranty. 

Frequently Asked Questions

How Much Does a Sears Home Warranty Warranty Cost?

Our research found the average cost of an Sears Home Warranty warranty to be $719.88. Individual plan pricing can depend on your coverage options and where you live. But that’s very high for a home warranty – almost $150 more than the average cost.

What Do Sears Home Warranty Plans Cover?

Sears Home Warranty plans cover most major appliances, home systems or a combination of both. You can choose various levels of coverage for your appliances, or a systems package which covers AC and plumbing.

What Does Sears Home Warranty Not Cover?

Sears Home Warranty policies, like those of other home warranty companies, do not cover damages resulting from misuse or from natural events. Damages caused by natural events may still be covered by your homeowners insurance policy.

How Much Is Sears Home Warranty's Service Fee?

It depends. You can choose policies with service fees of $75 or $100. Your annual payment will be adjusted accordingly.

Can You Cancel a Sears Home Warranty Plan for Free?

Yes. Sears Home Warranty told us that you can cancel any of their policies for free. 

How Do You File a Claim With Sears Home Warranty?

Support is available 24/7 and filing a claim is a relatively easy process. You can do that: 

  • By calling 855-256-2467 
  • By submitting a claim through their website at Sears' preferred vendor, Cinch Home Services

Once the claim is made, expect authorization in as little as two hours during regular business hours or within 24 hours if made during non-business hours. 

What Is the Response Time After Filing a Claim With Sears Home Warranty?

The response time after filing a claim is 2 hours. That’s very fast for a home warranty company.

Are There Customer Service Complaints Against Sears Home Warranty?

When it comes to customer satisfaction, the recent history of Sears makes it difficult to asses how well they are serving their customers. When we last reviewed the company in 2019, they were not doing very well. At that time, we found that the majority of customer reviews of the company were negative. 

Methodology

There are several aspects to consider when evaluating a home warranty company and its coverages. To assist in your decision process, our methodology for reviewing home warranties includes a quantified scoring system that evaluates four major categories - total plan cost, coverage and support, customizability and transparency. Within those four major evaluation categories we look at 18 core features that include annual plan fees and service fees, claim response times, payout caps, states available, contract length range, customizable coverages, ability to use own repair person, free cancelation, plan pricing, plan exclusions and other plan provisions available online. We assign fractional score values ranging from 0.00 to 1.00 points for each feature and then weight those feature values according to subject matter expert advice and consumer survey importance ranking.  We also compare features for each company to industry average values determined from our data collection for the top 25 home warranty providers. Third-party ratings and customer satisfaction scores are factored in to help assess a home warranty company’s overall quality, suitability and value.

Article Sources
Investopedia requires writers to use primary sources to support their work. These include white papers, government data, original reporting, and interviews with industry experts. We also reference original research from other reputable publishers where appropriate. You can learn more about the standards we follow in producing accurate, unbiased content in our editorial policy.
  1. Better Business Bureau. "Transformco."