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Complete Appliance Protection Program


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Got something in the mail the other day from CAP; Complete Appliance Protection. It offers:

(Quote from the letter) "A 90-Day Guarantee for Home Inspectors, which protects the home buyer from having problems with the major mechanical systems in the home: Furnace, A/C, Water Heater, Stove, & Dishwasher."

Does anyone know about this company or policy? I have attached a link to the site, where the brochure they sent me is viewable.


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I have enough responsibility (and dignity) to not offer to be the Maytag man. Besides that the plan is scam with a gazillion loopholes in the "what's not covered section" and even if the appliance was installed perfectly to code and wasn't abused or damaged by an animal and isn't posing safety concern for the workman, the values of insurance are only about 1/4 actual cost. It's a bunch of crap.

Tell me the truth, you couldn't be bothered to read it and figured you'd get some patsy over at TIJ to read it for you. I feel cheap and used.

A nice Omaha steak certificate would make me feel a little better.

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No, I wouldn't do that to anybody. The whole thing looked weak to me in the first place. I just wanted to post it to let other people know about it. I always state up front to my customers, that the info I provide in no ways render any kind of quarantee, or warranty.

As for feeling cheap and used; well that's just a personal fight for all of us...



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Back on topic,

I take a very blunt and hard line approach to the whole issue of appliances and such. I think that if you do otherwise, people get the impression that we are somehow warranty providers anyway - when we're anything but.

I tell folks up-front, before the inspection, that the only thing I do with appliances is turn them on to see if they work.

I tell them that I don't have any food to grind up in the disposal - if it spins up and doesn't leak, I'm happy with it.

I tell them that I don't have any dirty dishes to wash in the dishwasher - if it fills, cycles properly and then empties itself without leaking all over the place, I'm happy with it.

I tell them that I don't have any clothing to wash/dry in the washing machine and dryer - if the washer fills with water and then spins out without flooding the house and the dryer heats up I'm happy.

I tell them I don't have any unbaked cake to stick in the oven and wait an hour to see if it will bake properly, or any food to cook in the microwave, and I'm not going to boil any water to ensure that the stove burners reach any temperature that is hotter than is too hot for me to touch - if the oven and stove burners get too hot to touch and the microwave will make a wad of damp paper towel heat up in about 10 seconds, I'm happy.

I also tell them that I'm not going to guaranty the longevity of any furnaces, boilers or water heaters. I'll test them to see whether they work and examine them to see whether they're installed correctly, but I don't have x-ray vision and am not a swami, so I have no way to know how long they'll last.

I emphasize the fact that there is no guaranty on anything by saying that, if any of those items breaks down before my truck reaches the end of the driveway, I'll feel sorry for them, but don't expect me to pay for any of it.

Everyone gets it. Everyone, that is, except for one lady who didn't seem to understand that "already beyond the end of it's useful service life and should be replaced now, before it springs a leak and damages something" meant that she should have the water heater under her kitchen counter replaced before my truck reached the end of the driveway. She bought the home without having it replaced and it failed two weeks after she moved in. She wanted a refund plus the cost of the labor to completely disassemble her kitchen counter to remove and replace the danged thing and reconstruct the counters. I shouldn't have, but I gave her a refund (25% of the cost of the new one plus the work) and had her sign over a hold harmless before I handed over the check, because I could just sense that if I didn't I was going to hear from her when a 40-year old lockset stuck or whenever one of the appliances reached end of it's service life.

When I was with the franchise outfit, they tried selling warranty's for a while. I sold the first, and, I think, only one ever sold. A year or so later they dropped the program. Most consumers would read through the long list of disclaimers and rules in the brochure and were smart enough to see that it was all a bunch of malarkey designed to rope them in and give them some perception of having a valuable added service tacked onto the inspection when it was anything but.

Concentrate on doing an exemplary and extremely thorough inspection that won't ever come back to bite you. Do that and be firm up-front about what you'll do for the client, what you won't do for them, and what avenues they have open to them in the event they think you didn't perform. Do that, and you won't have to charge ridiculously low fees to garner work, can charge more than the other guy for your services, and people will happily pay it, and you won't waste your time chasing your tail to process rinky-dink little complaints or process claims, only to see them turned down and then have to waste more time explaining to the client why the warranty company won't pay out when the furnace that's 125% of its expected service life craps out.

(I'm feeling particularly sanctimonious today. Can't you tell? [:-smile_g



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  • 3 weeks later...

Mike that sounds so cold. Are you telling us you don't wanta be their "Cradle to Grave Insurance policy"???

What Mike said is good. Over 28 years I've found that the BEST thing I can do for clients is to get their EXPECTATION LEVEL down to where I can really have a chance of acheiving it.

To do that, I do exactly what Mike does.

Folks I'm good but I don't have X-ray Vision and I can't see behind the furniture or wall coverings any better than you can.

If there's a hole in the floor under the refrigerator that the seller didn't tell you about - it will still be there when you move in because I'm not a furniture mover.

I give the same warranty that my Doctor does - Here's what you look like right now. Could you fall tomorrow and break your leg - Yep. Could you have a stroke or heart attack next week - absolutely. Many things (including people) can be older and worn BUT are working just fine one minute and then quit working completely 5 minutes later with no advance warning.

I don't have a Crystal Ball and I can't predict the future, so your guess as to how long something will last is probably as good as mine.

I'm not a Warranty Company, but if you want a warranty - I recommend that you BUY ONE.

Some agents or even clients may think your being cold blooded, but in my mind you're just giving them the strait-skinney right up front.

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