Some home improvement projects are easier to take on than others. If you want to change up the color in a room, a bucket of paint is a fairly inexpensive endeavor.
But when it comes time to replace major systems in your home, it can take a significant amount of money. How do you budget for a new furnace and air conditioning system?
For most of us, we start out by Googling. And Google can be a very powerful tool to start learning overall costs. But keep in mind that Google is filled with all kinds of estimates. And if you are reading about how much someone paid for a system in Miami, you’re playing by a different set of rules here in Denver.
An even better step is to call in several HVAC contractors and get estimates for the work. Every HVAC is set up a little differently, depending on your home’s environment. A lot of things go into installing a new furnace and air conditioner. A technician will have to figure load factor, take into account the total number of rooms, including finished and unfinished space, and the layout of your rooms, which direction your home faces and how much sunlight is let in.
Reputable HVAC companies will give free estimates and answer any questions you may have before you sign on the dotted line to have the work completed. This is your chance to find out what is needed to make your home as comfortable as possible, and also discover if there is wiggle room in what equipment you install.
Would more efficient equipment be the best bet for your situation? The only way to find out is to ask.
You should also factor into your budget how you will pay for the project once you say yes. Will you set aside cash to pay for it? Will you put it on a credit card - factor in interest rates and fees. Will you take out a home improvement loan? Again, fees and interest rates should be calculated to determine the full cost.
And don’t forget about the complexity of the project. Will additional costs arise because of a new install? If you’re simply replacing old equipment with new, it may be different than if it’s a part of a remodel. If you’re adding rooms - new bedrooms, expanding the kitchen, or finishing a basement - it might require an entirely different level of efficiency and load calculation.
What questions do you have about budgeting for a new furnace and air conditioning system?