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Couple say home warranty left them 'drained'

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(Source: KTVK) (Source: KTVK)
(3 ON YOUR SIDE) -

Tim Nolan and his wife, Robin, said they recently started noticing what appeared to be a leak in their master bathroom shower area.

According to the couple, the tiling on the shower floor never dries and water, they say, seems to be seeping in from the bottom.

"As you see down here on all this trim how it's eroded away, this is now kinda concaved," Nolan said. 

And Nolan said they became more concerned after seeing visible water damage.

"The hardwood floor that abuts the tile in the bathroom, there's a trim piece that was spreading because it was getting wet and it started to fray and discolor and that really caught our eye," he said.

The two say they had a little peace of mind because they just paid $800 to renew their home warranty with a company called Old Republic. They figured if there was a leak in their shower area, Old Republic would take care of it.

"Plumber came out and he had different meters for detecting moisture in your walls and things like that," Nolan said.

Nolan said the plumber detected there was some kind of moisture behind the tile, but he couldn't figure where it was coming from.

The couple said the plumber indicated he would report his findings to Old Republic and order a new faucet, which was possibly the problem.

But although the new faucet was delivered, Old Republic refused to pay to install any of the new parts.

Why? Well, Nolan said that Old Republic said the parts were under the manufacturer's warranty.

Old Republic left a voicemail for the couple:

(recording from Old Republic) "We do not cover systems that are covered under a manufacturer's warranty so we aren't covering things at this time."

3 On Your Side contacted Old Republic and, apparently, the company had a change of heart.

In an email to the Nolans, the warranty company said it would pay for the repair "as a gesture of goodwill..."

Nolan said he's satisfied the repair will be paid for, but he's disappointed he had to put up such a fight and isn’t quite sure the faucet will repair the leak.

"And the one time you need them, you know, they grab on to the first thing that looks like a loophole for them to escape and go nope, claim denied," he said.

I appreciate Old Republic reconsidering its decision, but this is a good example of why some homeowners might want to think twice about buying a home warranty.

Many experts recommend taking the money you'd spend on a warranty, in this case $800, and put that in a separate repair fund.

Copyright 2016 KTVK (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved.


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Gary HarperGary Harper is the senior consumer and investigative reporter for 3 On Your Side at KTVK-TV.

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Gary Harper
3 On Your Side

With more than 20 years of television experience, Gary has established himself as a leader in the industry when it comes to assisting viewers and resolving their consumer-related issues. His passion and enthusiasm have helped him earn an Emmy for Best Consumer Reporter from the National Academy of Television Arts and Sciences. He’s also garnered several Emmy nominations

He has negotiated resolutions with companies of all sizes, including some of the biggest corporations in the nation.

Gary has successfully recouped more than $1 million for viewers around the state, making 3 On Your Side one of the most popular segments on KTVK and the station's Web site.

He's best known for investigating and confronting unscrupulous contractors. In fact, many of his news reports have led to police investigations and jail time for those who were caught. Viewers, as well as the companies and people he investigates, regard him as consistently being thorough and fair.

Gary has been with KTVK-TV since 1997. Prior to his arrival in Phoenix, he worked for WZZM-TV in Grand Rapids, Michigan, where he was as an anchor and reporter.

Gary is from Chicago, but launched his television career in Lubbock, Texas, after earning a broadcast journalism degree from Texas Tech University. Following his graduation, he was quickly hired by KLBK-TV in Lubbock, where he enterprised and broke numerous exclusive reports. His aggressive reporting in Texas helped garner him Best Reporter by the Associated Press.

Gary has been married since 1994 and is the proud father of two sons. When he's not helping viewers, Gary is busy catching up on his favorite college and professional football teams as well as cheering on his beloved Texas Tech Red Raiders.

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