Congratulations on the decision to purchase a new home here in San Tan Valley. We hope the process is as smooth as it can be for buying a house. As part of the design process you may be given the option to purchase a water softener or Reverse Osmosis through the builder as one of your options. We are often asked if this is a good idea and the answer is almost always NO. There are typically several pit falls to this plan which we will outline briefly below.
- 30 Year Payment Plan: Buying through the builder means you’ll be paying for your water treatment for the next 30 years or until you sell the house. This means that even after it is gone it will still be a payment you are making. Now with interest that equipment cost you more than it ever should have.
- One size fits all: Although the builder may have a dozen options for paint, flooring, and cabinet hardware there is usually one option for water treatment. Now of course not every family is going to have the same concerns, issues, or even usage of the equipment; however the solution often provided is the same regardless of a persons or families specific requirements. Just because the houses may all look the same does not mean they should all have the same water treatment equipment.
- Brand Exclusivity Requirement: Similar to the one size fits all some builders have agreements with appliance producers such as G.E. or Whirlpool where they will use only their appliances for the entire home. This means everyone gets the same equipment, but it also means the consumer is paying more for something they could buy the exact same model of after closing and put in for a fraction of the cost.
- Unqualified Installer: Maybe “unqualified” seems a bit harsh as the installer of your builder’s water softener will be the plumbing company contracted to plumb the house. However, we have seen these units plumbed backwards; drain lines not connected properly, and systems never even placed in service. The biggest issue though is the installer does not know how or what all the programming settings should be and assumes it was programmed at the manufacturer. The manufacturer cannot program hardness because it would depend on your water hardness. One of the most common issues we see with a brand new water softener put in by the builder is that it was never programmed correctly to start with.
- Warranty: Ask specifically what the warranty is on the product. Often the builder will only warranty it for the first year and then after that you are on your own. This could mean that when you need something after the first year you are all on your own. More importantly if they give you the manufacturer’s warranty ask who services them since the manufacturer’s warranty will cover parts, but not the trip charges or labor necessary to make any repairs. For many new homeowners who buy their water treatment through the builder they end up hitting a barrier of frustration a few years down the road trying to have work on the softener and getting bills rivaling the cost of new equipment.
In the process of buying a new home there is stress and multiple decisions to make so often it seems so much easier to purchase a softener through your builder so that you do not have to worry about it during the move in process. However, the ease of today can often cost you more down the road. If you have additional questions in regards to whether to buy through the builder or questions in regards to the treatment options they are offering feel free to call our office at 480-987-3788 and schedule some time with one of our technicians.
Water Softener solutions for home owners in the East Valley: San San Valley Queen Creek, Gilbert, Tempe, Mesa and the Chandler area. Your top rated Water Softener company!