Buying a new home is usually quite an exciting process. You review numerous homes and try to figure out which one will suit your lifestyle best. And amongst all that excitement, it is not uncommon for people to forgo several essential steps. In this article, we will go over the facts of why you must get an HVAC inspection when buying a home.
Why you should consider getting an HVAC inspection when buying a homeFor most people, buying a home is the biggest purchase of their lives. As such, they tend to give it due diligence and perform ample research into real estate trends, housing factors, and neighborhood history. Unfortunately, no home is perfect. And people usually have to make compromises and put aside more minor issues to find a home they deem worthy. Let us set things straight and note that an HVAC system is not a tiny issue, nor is it something you should ignore. A subpar HVAC system should be a significant concern for a potential home purchase, if not a complete deal breaker. Neglecting HVAC issues could be a considerable expense, not to mention a danger to your health and safety.
The seller may not be aware of any HVAC issuesWhen someone sells a home, they must fill out the "sellers disclosure report." There they will outline all the defects and problems they are aware of. But, if the seller didn't care much about HVAC maintenance, they are likely unaware of any issues. This, unfortunately, can cause you to buy a home with a poor HVAC system. The seller didn't technically lie to you or deceive you. They weren't aware of any issues, so it wasn't even a lie by omission. And if you don't perform an HVAC inspection, you likely won't be aware either, at least for the time being.
A standard inspection doesn't include HVACArguably, the most common reason people skip HVAC inspection when buying a home is that they think a standard home inspection will cover it; however, it will not. The home inspector might turn on the HVAC to ensure it works. But imagine if a car mechanic did the same with your car before you bought it. A simple "work or doesn't work" check hardly covers the complexity and the potential issues you might face with an HVAC system.
The HVAC system is the most expensive applianceA complete HVAC system replacement can cost between $5000 and $10000. As such, it will likely be your most expensive appliance. If you have money to burn, then sure - go ahead and purchase a home without an HVAC inspection. But, if you value your money, you'd be wise to inspect it to the best of your capabilities. Like most other complex systems, the sooner you notice an issue, the cheaper and easier it is to fix. Therefore, even if there are only minor issues with the HVAC, you'd be wise to try and catch them as soon as possible.
Consider the energy billHalf of your energy bill will go to heating and cooling. Therefore, it certainly does pay off to have an efficient HVAC system, especially in the long run. Unfortunately, you cannot know if your HVAC system is efficient without inspecting it. All systems can function seemingly well and still have underlying issues that hamper their performance. Therefore, regardless of whether or not your HVAC does the job, you still need to ensure that it is problem free.
HVAC inspection tipsA full-fledged HVAC inspection is something only a professional can perform. There are certain aspects you can check on your own while visiting a new home. If it turns out that you need to have the HVAC system repaired, the best time would be after the purchase and before you move in. The house will be empty, and the repairs won't bother you. Remember that if you are planning a long-distance move to California, your best course of action is to hire professional movers and let pros assist you. Most moving companies will also offer additional services such as storage. This can prove to be extremely valuable if you have major HVAC system problems and need to schedule unplanned repairs.
Determine the age of the systemThe average HVAC lifespan is around 15 years. If the system is older, you should consider replacing it or at least schedule major repairs. Most HVAC providers will advise you to schedule an inspection every 10 years. If the seller is unwilling to replace or upgrade their HVAC, you should try to negotiate and lower their asking price for the property.
Check duct workLeaky ductwork is a sign of an inefficient HVAC system. This is because every bit of air that leaks out necessitates your HVAC to work harder. So, make sure that you check for gaps, torn sections, loose connections, etc. You can hire professionals to tackle duct issues. But it would be best if you made a note of them as soon as possible.
Take note of the comfort levelA well-running HVAC system will make a home feel comfortable. So, once you go around to visit it, make sure to take note of the comfort level. If there is any notable stuffiness, sudden changes in temperature, or drafts, know that they can be a cause for concern.
ConclusionBy now, you should have a reasonably good idea of why it is necessary to get an HVAC inspection when buying a home. From the financial standpoint alone, consider that it will be your most expensive appliance and your most significant energy bill contributor. Therefore, ensuring that your HVAC is in good condition only makes sense.
If you put your faith in the seller or the standard home inspection, know that you are putting yourself at needless risk. The seller may not be aware of any issues. And the home inspection most likely won't cover your HVAC with due care. A licensed professional is the only person who deserves trust with your HVAC inspection when buying a home. The tips in this article should help determine whether an HVAC system is suspicious. And even if everything seems ok, we would still advise you to hire a professional for a thorough inspection.
After years in the HVAC industry working for both small and large companies, we knew we could offer customers our experience, good prices, and excellent service. So, we started our own HVAC company.