At times, he said, it wasn't clear what company was taking his calls. The warranty was marketed as a Sears Home Warranty, and Sears partners with a warranty company named HMS National for the warranty. Some of the reps Torine spoke to identified themselves as Sears, others said they were HMS, and still others said they worked for Cross Country Home Services CCHS. Finally, a repair company was located. "The company made four appointments to come to my house on four different days. They never called or showed up," Torine said. By now it was May 14. Torine called the warranty company again and was given a new repair guy to call. "I called immediately," Torine said. "He said, 'Why does Sears keep giving out my number?I'm not licensed for air conditioners. '" Curious, Torine did a quick search to see how many air conditioner repair companies he could find in Morris County: more than 75 during a three minute Google search, he said.
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This all matters because a company's reputation is linked to its name. Name changes and corporate layers, like in this case, make it hard for consumers to research a company. The Better Business Bureau shows more than 2,300 complaints against HomeSure. Better Business Bureau Among the items we found: The Better Business Bureau BBB received more than 2,300 complaints about HomeSure nationwide in the past three years. That sounds like a lot, but as past Bamboozled columns have shown, it's impossible to tell whether a complaint number is high or low without having the perspective of knowing how much business a company does. We asked CCHS, but a spokeswoman refused to say how many warranties it has.