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Choice Home Warranty vs. American Home Shield

Compare coverage to make the best choice for your home

Profile picture of Michele Lerner
by Michele Lerner Mortgage & Real Estate Contributing Editor
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Choice Home Warranty and American Home Shield (AHS) are two nationally recognized home warranty companies. They both provide round-the-clock service in multiple states and are affiliated with licensed local vendors nationwide.

Choice Home Warranty vs. AHS comparison

 Choice home warrantyAmerican home shield
Average yearly cost$450$600
Plans availableBasic plan
Total plan
Appliances plan
Systems Plan
Combo Plan
Build-your-own plan
Service recall period90-days on parts
30-days on labor
60-days on parts
60-days on labor
AvailablityAll states except California and WashingtonAll states except Alaska
Support24-hour call center for claims24-hour online claim system
Customer satisfactionChoice Home Warranty reviewsAmerican Home Shield reviews
 Average yearly costPlans availableSupportService recall periodAvailablityCustomer satisfaction
Choice home warranty$450Basic plan
Total plan
90-days on parts
30-days on labor
All states except California and Washington24-hour call center for claimsChoice Home Warranty reviews
American home shield$600Appliances plan
Systems Plan
Combo Plan
Build-your-own plan
60-days on parts
60-days on labor
All states except Hawaii24-hour online claim systemAmerican Home Shield reviews

Compare coverage

To compare coverage, we chose Choice Home Warranty’s “Total Plan” and American Home Shield’s “Combo Plan.”

With these plans, both Choice Home Warranty and American Home Shield provide coverage for major home systems including heating and cooling, ductwork, electrical, plumbing, and major appliances including refrigerators, ranges/ovens/cooktops, dishwashers, built-in microwaves, garbage disposals, washer/dryers, water heaters, garage door openers and ceiling fans. Both provide optional, add-on coverage for items like pools and spas, well pumps and septic systems.

Choice Home Warranty coverage: Choice Home Warranty’s total plan covers a few items that American Home Shield’s combo plan does not, including whirlpool bath and exhaust fans. Additionally, Choice offers optional coverage not available via American Home Shield for the following items: second refrigerators, stand-alone freezers and limited roof leak coverage.

American Home Shield coverage: Overall, American Home Shield has the edge with total items covered. Their combo plan covers the following items not listed under Choice Home Warranty’s total plan: doorbells, smoke detectors, re-key services, instant hot and cold water dispensers, freestanding ice makers and built-in food centers. Also worth noting, American Home Shield offers optional coverage for guest units under 750 square feet.

Compare cost

While yearly fees do vary by plan, on average, Choice Home Warranty costs $450 and American Home Shield costs $600. Both companies have service call fees starting at $75 per visit. American Home Shield also provides the option to pay a higher service call fee (between $100 and $125 per visit) in exchange for a lower annual cost, while Choice Home Warranty has an overall lower cost.

 Choice Home WarrantyAmerican Home Shield
Average yearly cost$450$600
Service call fees$75 per call$75, $100 or $125 per call
Appliance benefit limitUp to $1,500$3,000
Systems benefit limitUp to $1,500$1,500

Compare contract policies

Replacement policy

If an item cannot reasonably be repaired, most home warranty providers will provide a replacement of the item in an amount up to the policies coverage limit.

Choice Home Warranty replacement policy: Choice Home Warranty’s user agreement also states they will provide replacements that have similar features, capacity and efficiency, but do not guarantee dimensions, brand or color. However, they state they will provide a builder’s grade replacement for items like toilets and ceiling fans. Choice Home Warranty will provide a cash payout in the amount of the average cost of replacement or repair for items where parts or replacements are no longer available. While they state their cash payout terms are similar to AHS’s in regard to having a payout capped at a maximum coverage limit, their user agreement also states that they reserve the right to offer cash back in the amount of what their cost would be to repair or replace the item, which is often below retail value.

American Home Shield replacement policy: American Home Shield’s sample contract states they will provide replacements with comparable features, capacity and efficiency, but makes no guarantee on matching dimensions, brand or color. A cash payout may be provided in lieu of replacement if the cost of the repair or replacement exceeds your policy’s coverage dollar limit. In that situation, you would receive a payout in the amount the coverage cap and be responsible for covering the rest of the cost of the replacement. You’ll also be required to provide AHS documentation that proves you used their payout to replace the item in question. If a replacement fails within 60 days, AHS will pay for the repair and no service fee will be charged.

Coverage limit

The coverage limit on your policy refers to the maximum dollar amount the home warranty company is willing to pay out to repair or replace item. These maximums can vary between appliances and systems or per item covered.

Choice Home Warranty coverage limit: $500–$1500 per item

American Home Shield coverage limit: $1000–$1500 per item

Waiting period

A waiting period is the amount of time between purchasing a plan and the policy going into effect. The industry’s average waiting period is 30 days, which both companies adhere to.

Choice Home Warranty waiting period: 30 days

American Home Shield waiting period: 30 days

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Best Price(732) 765-6416 Get a Free Quote Visit website
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Best Coverage Options(888) 395-0952 Get a Free Quote Visit website

Bottom line: Choice Home Warranty or AHS?

Both providers offer a comprehensive home warranty plan that aims to provide hassle-free coverage for all major systems and appliances in the home. Both Choice Home Warranty and American Home Shield have positive reviews from homeowners, who appreciate the companies’ customer service and coverage. When it comes to which home warranty you should choose, it depends on what factors matter most to you.

Choice Home Warranty is best for homeowners who want the lowest price: You can save an average of $100 a year with a comprehensive plan from Choice Home Warranty. The plan also provides some unique coverage options like limited roof leak coverage, which is not offered by many providers.

American Home Shield is best for homeowners who want complete coverage: American Home Shield has more in-depth coverage. Their plans are available in most states, and their unique build-your-own plan really sets them apart.

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Profile picture of Michele Lerner
by Michele Lerner Mortgage & Real Estate Contributing Editor

Michele Lerner, author of “HOMEBUYING: Tough Times, First Time, Any Time”, has been writing about personal finance and real estate for more than two decades. Michele writes for regional, national and international publications in print and online for a variety of audiences including consumers, real estate investors, business owners and real estate professionals.