Is Guardsman furniture protection worth it?
January 17, 2010 7:30 AM   Subscribe

Is the Guardsman furniture protection insurance worth it?

Business has been surprisingly good for Mrs. Thorzdad, and she has declared that we can finally afford to replace our nasty, 22-year-old couch. So, I get dragged to furniture stores for the past three weeks. Joy, unbounded...

Anyway, one constant at the stores seems to be that everyone is pushing this Guardsman furniture protection plan. Basically, the store sprays-down your furniture with some protectant and you get a 5-year warranty that supposedly covers any and all stains and damages. This for the sum of, approximately, 9% of the price of the furniture being covered (or $60 minimum.) Not a princely sum, but we are not eager to spend cash foolishly, either.

In my Googling, I have, of course, found quite a bit to concern me. Ripoff Report has a small handful of reports that seem to imply Guardsman uses any and all excuses to refuse coverage. And, if the reports are to be believed, they insist on your using snailmail to make your claims and communicate with them. Of course, RR is not going to feature positive reviews, since it's a bitch-n-moan site.

My question, of course, is whether any of my fellow MeFites have any experience with this Guardsman plan? Or, whether you happen to sell furniture and push the plan? Opinions?

I'm solidly opposed to extended warranties, myself. OTOH, what warranty furniture comes with is usually limited to defects in workmanship, whereas the Guardsman plan claims to cover accidental stains and damage, so it seems to be more like car insurance, rather than an extended warranty.

What say you?

As an aside, I cannot believe that, in this day and age, furniture doesn't come from the factory with some sort of fabric protection already. Someone get a memo to North Carolina, asap.
posted by Thorzdad to Home & Garden (9 answers total)
 
Gack, I'd skip it. Plus, wouldn't this sort of damage be covered by your homeowner's or renter's insurance?
posted by Admiral Haddock at 7:37 AM on January 17, 2010


I used to work in a furniture store and had to put this stuff on the furniture.

It works well enough - it's basically like a light waterproofing that will keep most stains from setting before you can clean them up. You could buy a couple cans of scotchguard at Menards and do the same thing yourself.

Like any insurance, they have an incentive to not pay out, but odds are small that you would make a claim anyway. The store I worked at refused some claims and paid others depending on their determination - I don't recall the exact criteria, but I do recall thinking it wasn't totally unfair.

At the store I worked at, they would usually pick up the piece and reupholster/recover it or otherwise repair the defect at the place of their choosing.

In my opinion, I wouldn't bother with it. I just don't see the value - I don't care much if my furniture gets stained or dirty, and anything that did happen wouldn't be worth the hassle of calling them up, having it inspected, picked up, repaired, and returned.

But (and local stores will vary) it's not a scam, and if you feel it's worth it it could be useful to you.
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 7:51 AM on January 17, 2010


wouldn't this sort of damage be covered by your homeowner's or renter's insurance?

Stains and tears to furniture? I would doubt it. Homeowner's insurance covers large-scale damage caused by things like fires, burst pipes, vandalism, etc. not spilling nail polish on a couch or the cat scratching a tear in a seat cushion. At least, I don't think it would. There's also a deductible involved with homeowner's insurance that would probably be more than the cost of the repair.
posted by Thorzdad at 7:52 AM on January 17, 2010


It's basically like a light waterproofing that will keep most stains from setting before you can clean them up. You could buy a couple cans of scotchguard at Menards and do the same thing yourself.

I wondered about this. Whether their protectant was any better than good old Scotchguard.
posted by Thorzdad at 8:10 AM on January 17, 2010


I wondered about this. Whether their protectant was any better than good old Scotchguard.

I couldn't speak to that very well. I suspect it's about the same.
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 10:08 AM on January 17, 2010


Pretty pricey. Scotchguard it yourself, and be careful. My couch was re-upholstered @10 years ago. It's no longer pristine, but it's in very good condition. Make sure the seat covers can be washed. Train cats not to ruin furniture, which probably wouldn't be covered anyway.
posted by theora55 at 10:44 AM on January 17, 2010


And, save that money for slipcovers in the future. Better value, in my book.
posted by theora55 at 10:45 AM on January 17, 2010


Thanks, all. You're all thinking along the same lines as we are.
posted by Thorzdad at 11:56 AM on January 17, 2010


I say no:

Common Stain Repellent Linked to Thyroid Disease.
posted by jamjam at 5:38 PM on January 22, 2010


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