Missoula Heating Contractors Talk About Navigating HVAC Choices for Existing Homes and New Builds

When it comes to purchasing a home, whether it’s an existing property or a new construction, the HVAC system plays a critical role in ensuring comfort, energy efficiency, and indoor air quality. Understanding the considerations specific to HVAC systems can help you make an informed decision that meets your needs and budget. Let’s explore the key factors to keep in mind when comparing HVAC options for buying an existing home versus building a new home. 

20 Questions: New Home Build vs Renovating a Pre-Existing Home

1. Is the up-front cost less for a new build or a pre-existing structure?

There are obviously many variables to consider, including the type of HVAC system, the condition of the preexisting home, etc. Generally, you can expect initial heating costs to be lower with a renovation. 

Missoula heating contractors give the point to renovating a pre-existing structure.

2. Will the maintenance costs of the HVAC system be less for a new build or a pre-existing structure over the first 5 years?

Because a new build will have all new parts including the heating unit, ductwork or piping, etc., it will have fewer needed repairs requiring less maintenance costs than doing a renovation.  

Missoula heating contractors give this point to a new home build.

3. Will a new home build or renovation be more energy efficient, according to Missoula heating contractors?

In general, a new home will have a more energy-efficient HVAC system. This is because the latest, most efficient model can be installed in the home.  

Missoula heating contractors give this point to a new home build.

4. Will I have a quieter heating system in my Missoula home if I build a new home or renovate a pre-existing one?

Because the new home will have brand new walls, insulation, components, ductwork, and a heating unit, it will run quieter than a renovation. If you renovate a home, how much of the structure you gut and replace, as well as whether you use the existing heater or get a new one as part of the renovation, will determine how quiet your HVAC system will seem to be. 

Overall, Missoula heating contractors give this point to a new home build.

5. Are there better tax incentives for HVAC systems in a new build or in a renovation?

There are a number of tax incentives for energy-efficient HVAC systems that can be earned in both a new build and a renovation. However, a new build can likely achieve more tax breaks and rebates due to the ability to design the most efficient HVAC system possible. 

Missoula heating contractors give this point to a new home build.

6. Will I have more options for customizing my HVAC system when I build a new home or renovate an existing one?

In building a new home, you have the ability to plan and design exactly what you choose, so the house can be built with those specifications included from the beginning.  Renovations can include a large amount of HVAC upgrades and customizations but are limited by the basic structure of the home.  

Missoula heating contractors give this point to building a new home.

7. Is there a better long-term value in the HVAC system I put in a new home build or in renovating a pre-existing home?

A new home build will typically give you better value in performance as it will have all new components that have not worn down at all before you move in.  In a renovation, any components that you do not replace will already have some wear and tear. 

Missoula heating contractors give this point to a new home build.

8. Will I have fewer disruptions in the construction schedule with a new build or a renovation?

Due to technologies like BIM and CAD, new-build construction schedules can be streamlined extremely efficiently across various types of contractors, including HVAC, plumbing, electrical, etc. If pre-existing homes have CAD or BIM files, similar efficiency can be achieved among various contractors. However, many pre-existing homes do not have these available or up to date.  

Missoula heating contractors give this point to new home builds.

9. Will a new build or a renovation create a smaller environmental impact?

A new build will create a smaller environmental impact over time because you can install the most efficient options available, but a renovation will create a smaller environmental impact during the rebuild process.  

Overall, Missoula heating contractors give this point to a new build.

10. Will I have better indoor air quality if I build a new home or renovate an existing home?

The brand-new ductwork that you will have in building a new home and installing a completely new HVAC system will have zero dust or mold buildup. Meanwhile, a renovation will have effects that simply come with time, like dust and aging parts.  

Missoula heating contractors give this point to a new home build. 

11. Will a new build or a renovation be able to provide an HVAC system with more efficient energy consumption?

The answer to this question lies in the details.  If you purchase a brand new, high-efficiency heating unit for your renovation, it could achieve a similar level of energy efficiency as a new build.  However, if you leave the old heating unit in the home, expecting to get years more life out of it, you will probably have noticeably less efficiency than a new build with a brand-new heating unit with the latest efficiency capabilities. While this question can vary depending on what you decide to do with the heating system in your renovation, a new build will likely win out due to having all new components throughout the HVAC system.  

Missoula heating contractors give this point to a new home build.

12. Will a new home build or a renovation be able to have more advanced zoning capabilities?

A new home can have more advanced zone capabilities built right into the basic structure of the home. A renovation can be adapted to have advanced zoning capabilities, but if this requires rearranging ductwork or hydronic tubing, it can be extremely time-consuming and expensive. In general, more advanced zoning capabilities will be achieved with a new home build. 

Missoula heating contractors give this point to building a new home.

13. Which option between a new home build and a renovation will more effectively support integration with smart home technology?

Building a new home can provide complete integration with smart home technology from the design stages, allowing the home to be built around the exact specifications desired. A renovation project can redesign a home in many ways, but there are limitations based on the basic structure of the home.  

For this reason, Missoula heating contractors give this point to a new home build.

14. Will a new home build or a renovation have a more efficient layout of ductwork?

Typically, when a home is built, and a heating system is installed, a system of ducts is designed to be effective and efficient. Whether you are buying a new home or renovating, there should be an efficient network of ducts. 

Missoula heating contractors are going to call this question a tie.

15. Will a new home build or renovation of a pre-existing home have a more reliable HVAC system?

Because every component will be brand new in a new build, it will be more reliable than a renovation. Even if you replace components of an HVAC system in a renovation, there are still a number of components that have aged and worn out.  

Missoula heating contractors give this point to a new home build.

16. Will a new home build and a renovation allow for easier future upgrades?

If you are building a new home, you can design space for future upgrades. If you are doing a renovation, you will be limited in what space you can leave for the future. Furthermore, you are likely going to take up extra space that was originally left for future upgrades when the home was originally built.  

Missoula heating contractors give this point to a new home build.

17. Will I be able to have a better warranty if I undertake a new home build or renovate a pre-existing home?

Because the whole system is brand new, a new home build will be able to have better coverage than a renovation project.  Additionally, new home builds often come with comprehensive builder coverage.  

Missoula heating contractors give this point to building a new home.

18. Will a new home build or a renovation project have fewer insulation challenges?

Because insulation can be installed before the drywall has gone up, a new home builder will be able to do insulation without any challenges posed by the structure of the home. With a renovation project, there will be a large number of challenges when installing or replacing insulation. Drywall or sheetrock can be torn out to expedite insulation installation, and there are other methods for replacing insulation that can expedite this process. It is important to remember that effective and efficient HVAC systems rely heavily on a home’s insulation system.  

Missoula heating contractors give this point to a new home build. 

19. Which option ensures better compliance with the latest HVAC codes and standards?

Because a new home build has an entirely new system, all of the parts will have been produced with the latest technology and adhere to the latest codes.  A renovation will have dated parts that can be replaced, but most people will not replace every single component of the HVAC system. 

 Missoula heating contractors give this point to a new home build.

20. Will a new home build or renovation of a pre-existing home have better overall system performance?

Because a new home build will have all new components that have the latest technology holding to the latest efficiency standards, with no dust or mold build-up, with better warranty options, designed and installed to your specific desired specifications, you will undoubtedly have better overall system performance building a new home.  

Missoula heating contractors give this point to a new home build.

Contact the HVAC Pros When Choosing Between Existing and New Homes

Ultimately, whether you choose to buy an existing home or build a new home, prioritizing HVAC considerations is essential to creating a comfortable and energy-efficient living environment. By evaluating the condition, efficiency, customization options, and long-term maintenance of the HVAC system, you can make a well-informed decision that enhances the overall comfort and value of your home for years to come.

If you are considering a home renovation, contact Garden City Plumbing & Heating for information or to schedule an inspection. If you are interested in building a home, Garden City Plumbing and Heating has licensed BIM and CAD engineers to help you create the home of your dreams.  Either way, we can help you get there!  Call us at (406) 728-5550 or contact us online today!