1. First American Home Warranty vs American Home Shield

First American Home Warranty vs American Home Shield

Top providers in the industry, First American Home Warranty and American Home Shield are currently both featured in our Top 10 Best Home Warranty Companies of 2019. 

American Home Shield is known as the founder of the home warranty industry with more than four decades of experience. Although First American Home Warranty has less experience, the company is still well known with more than three decades in the home warranty business.  

The home warranty providers are similar in that they offer a $75 service fee (depending on the plan you choose), a one-year contract, a basic plan and combo package, as well as add-on options you can purchase a la carte. Both companies also only cover normal wear and tear of appliances, meaning they do not offer coverage for pre-existing conditions. Both companies have licensed contractors and a 24/7 claims service. 

However, American Home Shield and First American Home Warranty differ in many areas. If you want to learn more about how to decide between First American Home Warranty vs. American Home Shield, keep reading below. We'll tell you which company has a cheaper cost, better coverage options, positive customer feedback, and more. 
First American Home Warranty logo verified_user
#4 First American Home Warranty
7.7 Overall Score
3.7
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(1,864)
American Home Shield logo verified_user
#2 American Home Shield
8.3 Overall Score
3.7
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(5,154)

Overview

First American Home Warranty

American Home Shield

Average Cost Per Year
Average Cost Per Year
$399.00
Varies by Location
Average Service Fee
Average Service Fee
$75.00
$100
Contract Length
Contract Length
1 Year
None
Time In Business
Time In Business
36 Years
49 Years

Ratings

First American Home Warranty

American Home Shield

Overall Score
Overall Score
7.7 of 10
8.3 of 10
Review Score
Review Score
3.7
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3.7
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Value for Money
Value for Money
3.5
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3.6
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Quality of Product or Service
Quality of Product or Service
3.5
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3.6
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Customer Service
Customer Service
3.6
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3.6
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Company Trustworthiness
Company Trustworthiness
3.6
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3.6
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Likely to Recommend
Likely to Recommend
6.6 of 10
6.7 of 10

Reviews

First American Home Warranty

American Home Shield

Number of Reviews
Number of Reviews
1,864
5,154
Review Breakdown
Review Breakdown
3.7
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5 star
54%
4 star
14%
3 star
5%
2 star
3%
1 star
24%
3.7
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5 star
55%
4 star
11%
3 star
6%
2 star
4%
1 star
24%

Reviews for First American Home Warranty

Helpful Favorable Review

Verified Customer

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Mark

August 14th, 2020 Toano, VA DETAILS arrow_drop_down
Value for your money
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Quality of product or service
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Customer service
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Company trustworthiness
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Solid coverage, however their customer support is sometimes hard to work and hard to understand. They also don't seem to track dispatched contractors leaving it to he homeowner to deal with contractors who don't show up or change their appointment at the last minute after the customer has had to wait for more than a week.


Helpful Critical Review

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Amy Simonsen

August 14th, 2020 Corpus Christi, TX DETAILS arrow_drop_down
Value for your money
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They hire contractors who charge more than the market rate for plumbing or electrical services for out of pocket costs. And most so called "covered items" have out of pocket costs. So I ended up having to pay the $75 service call fee and find my own contractors for AC, water heater, plumbing, etc. It is better not using them at all. In addition, when I want cash out option, they put me on hold for over an hour, then came back on the phone to tell me that to replace the water heater, the cash out is only about $200, which is not enough to cover half of the cost of the water heater!


Reviews for American Home Shield

Helpful Favorable Review

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Azahel Flores

August 14th, 2020 Houston, TX DETAILS arrow_drop_down
Value for your money
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Quality of product or service
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Customer service
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Company trustworthiness
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Very satisfied!! It was a quick response on AHS part made the device request next day tech wasn't my home and fixed the issue in no time.. it's great to count on a sevice that is their when you need it the most especially in moments that your not even expecting


Helpful Critical Review

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Theresa G

August 14th, 2020 Exton, PA DETAILS arrow_drop_down
Value for your money
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American Home Shield charged me $100 for a service charge and never refunded me when we canceled service. I have reached out multiple times and you can not get someone on the phone. I have also emailed them. I finally got someone on the phone today and the connection is so bad on their end, it ended my call and they have not called me back. Is this business serious or a scam?????


The Final Word

Service Fee (Winner: American Home Shield and First American Home Warranty)
American Home Shield has a customizable service fee that can either be $75, $100, or $125. The service fee will directly affect your monthly cost; if you choose the cheaper service fee, you'll pay more in your monthly bill, whereas if you select the more expensive service fee, your monthly fee will be less.

First American Home Warranty has a set service fee of $75. Although it is not customizable, the service fee is on the cheaper end when compared to other service providers.

Home Warranty Cost (Winner: First American Home Warranty)
First American Home Warranty has American Home Shield beat in monthly/yearly cost. Although AHS has the convenience of a flexible trade service fee, when you compare the two companies and their pricing, First American Home Warranty comes out on top. If you select AHS's $75 service fee, First American Home Warranty's cost is cheaper.

First American Home Warranty's basic plan starts at $28 per month or $336 per year (pricing based on a $75 service fee). American Home Shield's two basic plans are both $49.99 per month or $599.88 per year (pricing based on a $75 service fee). Pricing may vary by location.

Contract (Winner: American Home Shield)
Both First American Home Warranty and American Home Shield require one-year warranty contracts. However, American Home Shield offers a month-to-month contract option after the first year of service. If you plan to have warranty coverage for more than one year and want flexible terms, American Home Shield is the better option.

Basic Coverage (Price Winner: First American Home Warranty; Coverage Options Winner: American Home Shield)
  • American Home Shield's Basic Plan: $599.88 per year (based on a $75 service fee)
  • First American Home Warranty's Basic Plan: $336 per year (based on a $75 service fee)
 
American Home Shield and First American Home Warranty differ in pricing as well as in what major appliances and systems their warranty covers. American Home Shield separates its basic coverage into two separate packages: an Appliances Plan and a Systems Plan. First American Home Warranty, on the other hand, offers one basic plan that includes both systems and appliances. 

First American Home Warranty's Basic Plan ($336 per year) includes the following:
  • Washer and dryer
  • Refrigerator
  • Dishwasher
  • Oven range
  • Cooktop
  • Microwave
  • Garbage disposal
  • Trash compactor

American Home Shield's Appliances Plan ($599.88 per year) includes coverage for the following appliances:
  • Refrigerator
  • Range/oven/cooktop
  • Clothes washer
  • Clothes dryer
  • Dishwasher
  • Built-in microwave oven
  • Trash compactor
  • Freestanding ice maker
  • Garage door opener
  • Built-in food center
 
The following systems are covered under American Home Shield's Systems Plan ($599.88 per year):
  • Air conditioner and ductwork
  • Heating and ductwork
  • Electrical
  • Doorbells 
  • Smoke detectors
  • Ceiling fans
  • Plumbing (including stoppages)
  • Water heater
  • Garbage disposal
  • Instant hot/cold water dispenser
  • Central vacuum

Combo Coverage (Winner: American Home Shield)
  • American Home Shield's Combo Plan: $659.88 per year (based on a $75 service fee)
  • First American Home Warranty's Combo Plan: $510 per year (based on a $75 service fee)

Although First American Home Warranty offers cheaper combo coverage, the company does not provide as robust of coverage as American Home Shield does. AHS's combo plan covers every system and appliance that First American Home Warranty's plan does, in addition to multiple other items:
  • Air Conditioning 
  • Doorbells 
  • Smoke Detectors 
  • Ceiling Fans 
  • Instant Hot/Cold Water Disp. 
  • Free-standing Ice Makers 
  • Built-in Food Centers

First American Home Warranty does not offer coverage for any of the above items, except for air conditioning. For air conditioning coverage, First American charges an additional $108 per year. If you want air conditioning included in your coverage, this bumps its yearly cost up to $618, and this doesn't include the additional major appliances and systems that AHS offers for a total of $659.88 per year.

Add-On Coverage Options (Winner: First American Home Warranty and American Home Shield)
First American Home Warranty offers five items that you can select individually for add-on coverage: electric central air conditioning ($108 per year), additional refrigeration ($48 per year), pool and spa equipment ($180 per year), and a first class upgrade ($108 per year and includes coverage for cranes, refrigerant recapture, reclaim and disposal, and a $250 reimbursement for each building permit).

American Home Shield also has additional offerings you can purchase a la carte: Electronics Plan by Asurion ($240 per year), coverage for guest unit ($179.88 per year for a unit less than 750 square feet), pool and in-ground spa coverage ($167.88 per year for pool only, $167.88 per year for in-ground spa only, $167.88 per year for pool and in-ground spa equipment, and $80.04 per year for additional in-ground spa), sump pump coverage ($30 per year but only available first year of warranty), and well pump coverage ($84.96 per year).

Both companies have robust add-on coverage, but their offered products differ. The company who has the best add-on coverage will depend on systems and appliances you're looking for as a homeowner.

Build-Your-Own Coverage (Winner: American Home Shield)
Many homeowners want the option to build their own home warranty packages as this provides more customization and ensures they don't have to pay for coverage they don't need. American Home Shield offers build-your-own coverage that lets you pick and choose each individual system or appliance you want coverage for. 

American Home Shield's build-your-own package is $659.88 per year based on a $75 service fee. The warranty plan covers your choice of 10 systems and appliances. If you select more than 10, it's $2 for each added product per month or $24 for each added product per year. 

First American Home Warranty does not offer a build-your-own home warranty package. The company only has a basic plan and a combo plan with additional add-on items.
 
Waiting Period (Winner: American Home Shield and First American Home Warranty)
Both American Home Shield and First American have 30-day waiting periods outlined in their warranty plans. This is a common feature in a warranty policy, stating that customers must wait 30 days for their coverage to become effective, and it ensures that warranty companies are not covering items that the consumer knew would need repair or replacement due before finding warranty coverage. Thirty days is the industry average.

Licensed Contractors (Winner: American Home Shield and First American Home Warranty)
First American Home Warranty and American Home Shield provide licensed contractors to respond to your service repair and replacement claims. This means homeowners don't have to worry about doing additional research to find their own service technicians. Both home warranty companies have a trusted network of technicians.

24/7 Claims Service (Winner: American Home Shield and First American Home Warranty)
First American Home Warranty and American Home shield both have a 24/7 claims service. You can contact the service providers through their service requests hotline or you can submit a claim on their websites through your customer login. These are convenient features for customers whose items need immediate repair.

Time in Business (Winner: American Home Shield)

American Home Shield has been one of the most well-known home warranty companies since its founding in 1971. The company is a market leader with more than 1.7 million customers.

First American Home Warranty has also been in business for decades and has extensive experience in the home warranty industry. Although AHS has been in business longer, First American Home Warranty has also proved itself as a trusted home warranty company with saving homeowners more than $180 million in system and appliance repairs and replacements since its opening.

Customer Reviews (Winner: First American Home Warranty)
First American Home Warranty has hundreds of positive reviews with the majority of consumers giving the company 3.5/5 stars in regards to the company's value for money, quality of service, customer service, and company trustworthiness.

American Home Shield has more negative reviews, giving the company an overall customer score under three stars. Customer satisfaction is a bit lower when it comes to quality of service, customer service, and company trustworthiness.

First American Home Warranty vs. American Home Shield: Which is the better option?
American Home Shield and First American Home Warranty are both popular brands in the home warranty industry. The companies offer robust home warranty plans with a variety of plans to choose from.

Which company is best for you depends on a variety of factors.

First American Home Warranty and American Home Shield are similar in their 24/7 claims process, quality of contractors, and add-on coverage options. Here is where the companies differ:

First American Home Warranty wins in the following areas: overall home warranty cost, basic coverage pricing, and customer satisfaction from customer reviews.

American Home Shield wins in these areas: service fee customization, contract flexibility, combo coverage, build-your-own coverage, and time in business.

top choice

American Home Shield
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