Whether it’s your first time buying a home or not, Cincinnati homebuyers often have questions about a potential new home’s HVAC systems. Asking questions about the heating and cooling systems in a home you’re considering purchasing will give you a great deal of information about monthly expenses and future repair or replacement costs. Before you buy, find the answers to these HVAC questions.
What do the monthly utility bills run? Obtaining the monthly averages for utility costs at the home will give you an idea of how much it will cost you to operate heating and cooling systems in the future. This information can be quite helpful in determining your budget and if the monthly expenses of a home work within that budget. Ask for information on electricity costs as well as natural gas costs, if applicable.
How are the HVAC systems sized? Purchasing a home with an air conditioner or furnace which is too big or too small for the structure can increase utility expenses. Improperly size units also have difficulty heating and cooling the home comfortably. Compare the size of the HVAC systems to the overall square footage of the home to determine if the systems are sized appropriately – your HVAC technician can look at these factors and others, such as insulation, windows and doors, to help you determine if the systems are sized correctly, and if not, how that will impact your comfort and expenses.
What is the age of existing HVAC systems? Cincinnati furnaces can be expected to last approximately 15-20 years; heat pumps 14-15 years; air conditioners 12-15 years; geothermal systems 30 years or more. Knowing the current age of the home’s systems will give you a good idea of when you can expect to replace them, so that you may prepare for the expense.
Were the HVAC systems maintained regularly? Maintenance greatly affects service life and performance of the home’s HVAC systems. If the owner has not maintained the systems yearly, expect to invest some money into maintenance and possibly repairs, if the owner will not do so. If the home’s HVAC systems have been neglected, they likely won’t offer the service lifespans mentioned above, so prepare for earlier system replacement.
Heating and cooling a new Cincinnati home will account for about half of your yearly operating expenses – when purchasing a new home, asking these questions will give you more information about the HVAC systems so you can best determine if the home is right for your needs. If you have any questions, feel free to call Nelson Comfort for assistance.