Air conditioning is a crucial part of life for many people who live in super heated climates like Arizona. It’s also important for many other areas of the country where temperatures may reach uncomfortable highs in the summer. Air conditioners are also large, expensive purchases that must be carefully planned for, often years in advance. So if you suddenly find yourself in need of a new AC unit, without any financial forethought, how do you obtain the financing you need to replace it? Luckily, there are several different ways you can go about it without worry. Precision Air and Heating offers some great financing plans with $0 down, 0% interest and no payments for 18 months, but there are many other options available to you as well.
Often the company that sells or installs your air conditioning offers a loan or financing package to help you make the purchase easier. These loans are often the easiest to get, because these people want your business. They are also in the business of air conditioning, unlike a bank that may only be interested in larger loans like cars and houses.
You may find that the company offers several different types of financing, and that you can often get approved the same day. Keep in mind that the loan may be through a third party, it may only cover new units (not repairs), and that it may come with interest rates between 13 and 15%.
Depending upon where you live, you may be able to get a state subsidized loan to help offset the purchase of your new air conditioner. You can contact your city council, or the company you’re purchasing from to see what may be available.
Rates from state subsidized loans vary depending on the state, but can be anywhere from 6 to 12%, so do your homework first.
This may be tricky in today’s market with so many borrowers underwater, but if you have enough equity in your home, you may be able to borrow against it to get your new air conditioner. Home equity loans are often the cheapest option, and the interest is tax deductible. You could pay anywhere from 4% to 5%, or 8% to 9%, depending on your credit and the amount of equity you have in the home. Keep in mind that while often the least expensive, home equity loans take the longest to close – about 60 days – so this may not be the best option if your AC unit suddenly stops working in July.
If you need to, you can always put the cost of the air conditioner on a credit card. Interest rates may end up digging you in deeper than you would prefer, unless you are able to find a balance transfer offer that can give you up to a year to pay it off interest free. If you are able to make the monthly payments in a timely way, this could be one of the least costly ways to pay for your new air conditioner.
If you have a low income, you may qualify for a Federal grant program aimed at helping homeowners who live with low or fixed incomes with heating and cooling expenses. The Federal Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program is designed to help with small grants that can help keep the power on. Some local offices can also help you find the resources you need to replace your air conditioner or HVAC unit.
If you are active in your local church, you may want to see if you are eligible for funds that some churches put aside to help parishioners with major costs like new air conditioners, particularly if you have low income or live in an area where air conditioning is vital to your health.
If you purchase a high efficiency air conditioning unit, you may want to find out if it qualifies for any green rebates from EnergyStar.gov or other programs. Some units with high SEER ratings qualify for tax credits and rebates that can offset the cost.
Keep in mind that the best time to buy a new air conditioner is when you don’t actually need one. Try to start planning for your new unit before the old one reaches its end so you don’t find yourself in an emergency situation — and paying more than you need to. Get creative and explore the different ways you can finance a new air conditioner and stay cool this summer.
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