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Ask A Realtor: Questions About Air Conditioning

I’m often asked questions pertaining to air conditioning in Colorado Springs homes, and in light of the weather for the past week, you may have some of the same questions!  Here’s some answers to commonly-asked questions about how much an air conditioner is worth for resale value, how many homes in Colorado Springs have AC, and more.

I’m often asked about air conditioning in Colorado Springs homes – In light of the weather for the past week, you may have some of the same questions!

How much is an air conditioner worth when I go to sell my home?

Be sure to check out our newest listing: 3,086 square feet in Stetson Hills!

Depending upon the value of your home, A/C will probably add about $2,500-5,000 to the value of your home, at least on paper (i.e. an appraisal).

That being said, the actual benefit of A/C when selling your home in the winter months will be fairly nominal.  If you’re selling in the summer months, you can typically get close to that “paper value” of $2,500-5,000.

The value of air conditioning at resale, even on paper, is going to be the same or slightly less than the actual cost.  So don’t look at it as an “investment” that will payoff when you sell.  You’ll likely get most of your money back out of it, but it’s not going to bring any additional return.

What percent of homes in Colorado Springs have air conditioning?

Based on a quick survey of El Paso county homes sold in June, only 31% had central air conditioning.

About 1/3 of homes in Colorado Springs have central air conditioning.

It is more likely you’ll find A/C in a newer home than an older one, however.  It was present in 38% of homes built since 2000, but only 26% of homes build prior to 2000.  Additionally, the price of the home dramatically affects the likelyhood of finding air conditioning.  Only 23% of homes that sold for less than $200,000 had A/C, while it was present in 53% of homes which sold for more than $300,000.

Do you need air conditioning in Colorado Springs?

This question comes from almost everyone moving from out of state.  Frankly, I don’t like to answer this question, because it is really a personal preference.

What do you think?  Is A/C a non-negotiable for you, or are you content without it?  Leave a comment with your thoughts!

Jeremy Isaac is a Colorado Springs Realtor, but you probably know him better as Carrie’s better half!

You can search the Colorado Springs MLS on his website, with no registration required to view homes, prices, addresses, or any other information.  Be sure to check out Jeremy’s newest listing in Stetson Hills – a beautiful 5 bedroom home in a quiet neighborhood!

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  1. I appreciate reading this analysis. We bought a spec home with no AC and didn’t think anything about it until this last week. Funny how two days after the heatwave – it’s fairly reasonable temps now. So, it still makes us wonder how beneficial AC is. We looked at houses during July last year and I don’t recall a huge negative reaction to the non-AC homes. Of course, I commented to my husband that the temperature in our house this week would be a deal breaker, if it were being shown.

  2. We have AC. We purchased our house in 2009 and we ultimately decided on this house because of the a/c. All the other homes were comparable…but did not have AC. I cant imagine not having it…i guess we are just spoiled!

  3. Desiree Whitall says:

    I am from florida, and it never ocurred to me that houses with our AC even exiisted! We just signed a lease on a new home for 2 years, and NO AC. NOt sure how this FLorida girl will make it!!

    • Close off all unused areas of the house (sheets tacked up over stairwells works well to keep air from going where you don’t want it), figure out what the air flow pattern is like in your house – it’s not always what you expect (i.e. air flow in my parents’ house does NOT create a “cross breeze” even with windows open on all sides; air moves in the top NW facing windows, down the stairs to the lower level; the SE side of the house gets almost no ventilation AND gets the most sun), put window A/C units in the room/rooms that air flows “from” and box fans to pull the cooled air into the other areas of the house. That’s how I survived when I lived in a house without central A/C – it’s pretty effective. :)

    • This made me smile because my Hubby is from Hawaii. His parents’ home does not have a furnace. At all. Never had one, ever. It never occurred to me that a house wouldn’t have a furnace!

      They don’t have air either – the cost of electricity there is rather high, and almost no one has air conditioning.

  4. A/C is a definite deal breaker for me! I won’t even consider any place to live – much less buy – without A/C. For me, it’s necessary to be able to function. Because of my health, any temps over roughly 73 degrees (interior or exterior) basically take me out of the game – mentally and physically. Whether we’re having a “heat wave” or not – my A/C is on once temps/sun outside create temps inside over 70.

  5. We built our own home, and framed the exterior with 2×6 walls. We also put it on a full basement, and put heaps of insulation in the ceiling (heaps, I tell ya!). We have ceiling fans in the bedrooms and in our living room.

    At night, we open the windows to let the warmer air out and the cool air in, which starts us in the low to mid 60′s most mornings. I go around in the morning and close the windows as needed. I also close the blinds on whatever side of the house is getting direct sun. So far this summer, the warmest we’ve had it get inside (upstairs) is 73, which is still comfortable – that was on those high-90′s days.

    Our electric bill is about $60 a month, and that’s with a $14 ‘grid fee’, so our actual charge for power is about $45. We also pump all our own water, enough for our family and a 1600 square foot garden (we have a well), so not bad!

  6. I have lived in Colorado all my life and never had A/C. The bedrooms in our current house in the Springs are upstairs. Which has made for some unbearable evenings come bedtime.

    We had a whole house attic fan installed last year and that does a wonderful job of cooling the house down at night. But, on the nights that it doesn’t cool down very much outside, the house doesn’t cool down enough to counteract the outside heat during the day. (We have old windows, so they probably don’t do a good job of keeping the hot air outside).

    I’d love to have A/C for those unbearable days/nights when it doesn’t cool down much in the evening, but my husband is way too frugal to even consider it.

  7. stephanie says:

    im from wisconsin, love the cold and hate the heat. NEED AC!!! i dont remember the last day we had our ac off :S winter WHERE ARE YOU?? (lol needless to say i didnt do well when lived in va or az)

  8. Dana M. says:

    We rent (and my husband is in the army), I chose to live on post b/c the houses have a/c and I couldnt find a rental with it. I would not consider buying a house almost ANYWHERE without a/c, or in the dryer climates, a swamp cooler.

  9. When we bought our home we didn’t care that it didn’t include A/C, because it was in such pristine, move-in condition. :D Actually, the lack of A/C tends to only be an issue in the middle of the afternoon and evening on the hottest days. And that only for a few weeks in the Summer. Having a finished basement that stays cooler is helpful too. Now, if Colorado was more humid, it would be more necessary to have A/C in my opinion!

  10. After 9 years in the Arizona desert WITHOUT A/C, I will never buy a house again without it. Unless we move to Alaska or something. LOL.

  11. We get by with a swap cooler during the day, and attic (whole house) fan at night during the dog days. I suppose if you were someone with a lot of allergies (mold, outdoors types) this wouldn’t be idea but it works for us.

    If I ever have to move, I would give extensive thought to the landscaping around the house. We have nothing that shades the sun as it goes down in the evening, so the front of the house cooks. Sure, we could plant, but at what expense to the plumbing?

  12. Adriana says:

    I remember living in Washington state and I thought it was so strange that people didn’t have A/C there. Well being from Phoenix, AZ, that’s almost unheard of! Most people have A/C or at the very least swamp coolers! Then in Hawaii we didn’t have A/C there either. But I assumed it was because we lived on post (first time ever)! Once we moved here and rented our first house, I never even thought to ask about A/C. I assumed it was naturally included! Nope! So when we built our house that was one of the first things I made sure it would have! While I normally do well in heat I still feel the need to always have and A/C unit even if I don’t use it! We have insane wind where we live and most of the time (except this summer) don’t even turn the A/C on!
    Well this summer made me appreciate our choice in having one. I am now 9 months pregnant and would be miserable if not for the A/C. I have kept the house at around 69 degrees and all of the ceiling fans going all day and night. For some reason (more than likely the pregnancy) I just can’t tolerate the heat right now!
    If we were ever to purchase another home, it MUST have A/C. I’m not sure I would even bother to look at a home without it! Maybe its the Arizona mindset still lingering in me but it just has to be a must!

  13. Tacy Melvin says:

    My hubby and I are originally from Las Vegas. His parents have a swamp cooler and no a/c and I think it’s unbearable in the summer. Mine have both and run the a/c when the cooler can’t keep up. But their cooler isn’t typical-it has an 8 inch pad instead of several 1 inch pads. We lived in a rental in Denver that had A/C and a swamp cooler. We bought our house here without any cooling system at all. I was 8 months pregnant when we moved in and by the end of our first week, I demanded a swamp cooler. We do pretty well with it. If we don’t turn it on early in the day, we notice in the late afternoon, but it’s bearable. And it blows into my kitchen, so I can bake in the summer and not melt away! I think you need something here, but not necessarily a/c.

    • Wow – no A/C in Las Vegas would be brutal, even with a swamp cooler!

      • Tacy Melvin says:

        They had a record breaking day while we were visiting earlier this month, 106 or 107. Just sitting on my MIL’s couch not moving was too much. I was dripping. Ick! No a/c in Vegas is rough. Really, really rough!

  14. Hi Carrie,

    This might seem like a strange question but where do people put up their business cards these days? I know, it’s old fashioned but I thought Jeremy might know since he’s in Real Estate and might get around more. I’ve explored a few places but it seems like sharing business cards on bulletin boards is non-existent these days. If you know or could direct the question to him, that would be great!

    Thanks much!

    Kristina Bittles

    • Hmm, I don’t think that he places business cards anywhere, except maybe at the coffee shop in Black Forest since he’s there all the time! That and Panera are the only places that I can recall seeing bulletin boards these days.

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