When you're contemplating buying a house, you have a lot on your mind, so you may not think of asking questions about the HVAC system in the properties you're looking at. The condition of a home's HVAC components is an important consideration, though, because it directly affects your family's comfort, safety and well being. To help you make the best home-buying decision, it's wise to get the answers to the following HVAC-related questions:
- What kind of HVAC system is in the home? The type of heating and cooling equipment impacts your utility bills, so you need to learn whether there's a central forced-air system with a gas furnace and air conditioner, an air source or geothermal heat pump, or additional equipment installed, such as mini-splits.
- What's the age of the HVAC equipment? Knowing that a home has older equipment that will soon need replacement can influence the property's value if you decide to make an offer. In contrast, you shouldn't have to worry about excessive energy consumption in a home with fairly new equipment, and it may still be covered by a manufacturer's warranty against defects too.
- Has the equipment been well maintained? Ask to see the HVAC system maintenance records to judge if the owner has properly maintained the equipment. If it's been well cared for, you can rest easy knowing that it's operating at optimal efficiency and working reliably, so there's less chance of equipment breakdowns or unexpected failures.
- Is the HVAC equipment sized and installed correctly? When you're considering buying a house, have a trusted HVAC professional inspect the equipment and all the system components, including the ductwork. After the inspection, your HVAC pro can tell you if the system is sized and installed properly so you'll have fewer worries about humidity and temperature control issues, poor air quality or high energy consumption.