The credit card extended warranty coverage is one of the least used benefits, but it has a lot of potential value. You may have heard your parents or grandparents lament that things aren’t made as well as they used to be. Certainly we have all seen electronics and other products that live up to this warning. Televisions that cost hundreds, even thousands of dollars blow smoke after a month. Or, you drop your brand new cell phone in a puddle and that’s the end of your social media life.
But it doesn’t have to be that way – that’s what warranties are for, right?
Sadly, many warranties on products today are about as flimsy and long lived as the products themselves. Maybe it’s a conspiracy. But the good news is that if you use the right credit card you can be protected better than those other poor schmucks standing in line with you waiting to buy the latest goodies in cash. That’s because some credit cards offer nationwide credit card appliance warranty extensions that can save you big time.
When you buy something today very often the cashier checking you out will ask if you’d like to buy the extended warranty. Forget about it. Not only does Clark Howard, financial advisor on CNN, recommend against this, but if you pay with the right credit card it is not necessary because you may have credit card extended warranty coverage.
Most things these days come with a 3 month to 12 month warranty. And you usually have 30 days to return a product to the store easily. While you may have a frustrating memory of a time when you were burned with an appliance “dying” just outside the warranty period, the truth is that most products that work on day one continue to work fine beyond the first year and the original warranty.
In addition, many credit card companies today (including Visa, MasterCard, Discover and American Express) offer an automatic extension of your warranty when you make the purchase using that credit card.
Of course, the credit card company is not really “extending your warranty”. That is, they are not going to have the product fixed. They are in essence offering to pay you back if a product fails in the covered period.
But there are some things you need to do to take advantage of extended warranty credit card benefits:
When you properly plan it out and prepare, credit card extended warranty coverage of an electronic or appliance can be a wonderful thing. But to truly reap the benefits of this credit card feature you need to be organized, keeping your product receipt and warranty information and being informed about your company’s policies.
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