Does Installing Central Air Increase the Value of a Home?

If you want to add both value and comfort to your home, you may consider upgrading to a central air conditioning system. While the absence of window units may seem like a no-brainer, it's important to consider a few crucial factors before you hire a contractor. You should first weigh the cost of installation, how much a buyer would pay for it and other considerations.

TL;DR (Too Long; Didn't Read)

Depending on your home's location and the cost to install a central air conditioning system, it may or may not increase the value of your home.

Cost Considerations

Before you can decide if a new central air system is worth the investment, you must know how much it will set you back. Home Advisor users report spending between $3,745 and $7,222 to get such a unit installed. The time of year in which you decide to make this upgrade may impact your price. In the dead of winter, air conditioning companies aren't busy and may offer significant discounts. You could save up to 20 percent if you wait for the right time.

The state of your home will also change your final price. Homes with forced air or an old air conditioning system are more manageable for installing a new A/C. For that reason, your costs will be significantly lower for either of those factors. The size of your home will significantly affect the price of the new system as well. It's vital to get the right system for the size of your home.

Can You Sell It?

Air conditioning is often called an "invisible upgrade." While it's certainly valuable, it's not as exciting to homebuyers as a pool or new countertops. If buyers simply expect central air, they will not see your new system as a bonus that warrants a higher price tag. However, if most homes in your area don't have such a feature, it could add extra value to your home. Your location and potential buyers may affect just how much value the system adds to your home.

While 60 percent of buyers say that central air is "very important," they aren't willing to cough up the full price of a new system. On average, these buyers will pay an additional $2,520 for central air. That won't cover the $3,745 or more that it will cost to put in the system. However, if you don't want to sell right away, the added comfort to your life may be worthwhile.

Go Green

If you decide to purchase a new central air system, think eco-friendly first. Many states offer incentives for systems that use less energy for operations. These incentives typically come in the form of a tax break. These efficient systems may also save you a bundle on your energy bill each month.

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