Do You Really Need That Warranty?

It can seem like everything comes with a warranty these days. That new coffee press from Amazon? Yup, even this dumb appliance comes with the option to get a two-year warranty. 

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In a world saturated with options, it’s easy to succumb to warranty fatigue and decline every warranty offered to you today. After all, how essential can a warranty be for a $20 coffee press? In reality, it isn’t necessary. Not all warranties are created equal, and it’s up to you to identify the worthwhile ones. 

While you can safely skip the warranty on small, inexpensive items, you should consider this annual contract on big household appliances. 

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You Can Usually Skip Protection on Small Items

A warranty for a low-cost item might seem negligible in the long run, but don’t be fooled. A coffee press, a phone charger, or a pair of earphones often come with warranties that are more of a marketing ploy than a valuable protection plan. They often come with many exclusions, so you can’t even rely on this insurance if something goes wrong. 

Household Appliances Can Cost a Lot to Maintain and Repair

Large household appliances, such as refrigerators, washing machines, and ovens, are different. These items are not only more expensive but also integral to daily life.

A malfunctioning refrigerator, for example, can lead to significant financial loss due to spoiled groceries. Meanwhile, a furnace breakdown can cause a significant health and safety crisis if you live in a colder climate. 

Compare these emergencies to a broken coffee press. They are not the same! 

Unfortunately, repairing or replacing a major appliance like your fridge and furnace costs much more than buying a new coffee maker. These appliances can easily take thousands to replace. 

As long as they’re under warranty, you won’t have to cover this steep price tag. You can rely on the warranty provider to cover the costs of maintenance and repairs. For entire replacements, your annual fee is often much less expensive than the cost of a new appliance.  

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Remember to Read the Fine Print

Warranties are not a one-size-fits-all solution to all household maintenance and repairs. Each contract comes with unique terms and conditions, and you have to determine whether its coverage provides enough protection for your finances. 

Sometimes, warranties come with a string of exclusions and conditions that make them next to useless. That’s why it’s important to read the fine. You should also always have an emergency fund. These savings can save your bacon when your warranty doesn’t kick in like you think it should. 

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Without an emergency fund, you might find it difficult to pay for repairs on your own. But don’t worry — you might get help dealing with emergencies by going online. You can find an online personal loan or line of credit to get the funds you need to repair an important appliance right away. 

When warranties are available for everything, you need to think strategically. Skipping warranties for trivial items may be a smart move, but when it comes to substantial investments like household appliances, taking the time to evaluate the warranty’s terms can save you money and provide peace of mind.


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