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HVAC Questions to ask When Buying a House


When you’re searching for your dream home, looking for a well-maintained HVAC unit might seem like a low priority compared to hardwood floors or granite countertops. But all HVAC units are not created equally. It is important to keep the quality of the central heating and cooling system in your potential future home on your radar. At On Time Home Services, we know the difference between a well-maintained HVAC and one that lacks the efficiency you will want for your home. Here are some HVAC questions you should be asking when you are house-hunting before you plant a SOLD sign in the yard.

What type of HVAC system does the home have?

Does the HVAC unit have a gas furnace or geothermal heat pump? Does it have any additional equipment installed, such as permanent filtration features or mini-splits for various rooms? Does it have an ENERGY STAR rating? The type of HVAC equipment will impact the amount of energy it consumes and the cost of your monthly utility bills.

How old is the HVAC equipment?

The typical lifespan for heating and cooling equipment is 10-15 years. If the HVAC is old and will soon need to be replaced, that can be an important factor in establishing the value of the house and you may want to make a lower offer. If the HVAC is new, you will have additional reassurance that your unit will be more energy efficient.

What is the status of the HVAC warranty?

If the system has a limited warranty rather than a lifetime warranty, you need to find out if the warranty will transfer to you when you buy the house. Some system warranties will void as soon as ownership has transferred, while others have a set expiration date regardless of who owns the house. If the unit will not be under warranty when you purchase, take that into account and either lower the price you plan to offer for the house, or request that the previous homeowners include an aftermarket warranty in the deal.

Was the HVAC equipment maintained well?

Request the HVAC maintenance records and/or documentation of the last system evaluation to see how well the previous owners took care of the equipment. Have there been any repairs or any recommendations for repair? The HVAC should have been serviced regularly and any internal issues should have been promptly repaired or replaced. If the previous owners neglected the HVAC, it will need to be replaced sooner. All of this information can factor into the value of the home if you make an offer.

What type of thermostat controls the HVAC?

This might seem like a minor detail at first, but once you’ve experienced the convenience and money-saving abilities of a digital thermostat, you will never want to go back. If the house comes with a smart thermostat or programmable thermostat, you will have more control over the temperature of your home throughout the day.

The HVAC unit in a home can add or detract value to a potential buyer. Don’t forget to find out all this information about your future dream home before you make an offer.

If you need professional assistance evaluating an HVAC unit or you need HVAC maintenance, replacement, or repair, On Time Home Services is here to help. Give us a call at (949) 649-8777

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