Another N. VA new construction install

Discussion in 'Quotes and Proposals' started by DITBOY, Jun 3, 2011.


    DITBOY New Member

    Ok, I'm new to this and have been reading every relevant thread I can find on here as well as every other web site on the subject.

    I also have a 3000 ft2 house, energy star new construction. I don't have a breakdown of each floor at present, but my initial feeling is my only choice of a contractor (one of the limitations of building new, but not "custom" as those can't be had for less than a $1M in my area) is planning to take me foe a ride.

    We will have a sit-down soon, but our initial discussion was driving toward a system that would cost $72k installed. Given what I've read here and elsewhere a system should cost roughly 1/3 more than a standard high efficiency HVAC system, which in this case is probably around $30k.

    As we get further into this I'd love to use the experts here as a sounding board. Hope you can help.

    Thanks in advance
  2. Mark Custis

    Mark Custis Not soon. Industry Professional Forum Leader

    It depends

    on where you are and what you want. Your numbers about additional costs may be true, but you do not give us enough to help or debunk your cause. One usually gets what one pays for. I am never the lowest bid, but my customers/partners are never unhappy.....

    DITBOY New Member

    Yes, it depends...

    ...and I'll provide more detail if I can get the contractor to respond to my reader for a sit-down. I've spent way too much time in the past trying to get contractors who may be good at their particular technical skill do do basic project management...scheduling, cost forecasting, and follow thru.

    Unfortunately, you may get what you pay for, but sometimes you get a lot less. So far, an inauspicious start.
  4. waterpirate

    waterpirate Well-Known Member Industry Professional Forum Leader

    Your mental capacity for realising these facts puts you at the advantage. Just because the space shuttle cost billions does not mean that the hammer and toilet seat have to cost hundreds of thousands. Common sense and monetarY dillagence will prevent money being sepperated from a fool. Keep us posted as we can help you sort out the bull.
  5. Palace GeoThermal

    Palace GeoThermal Well-Known Member Industry Professional Forum Leader

    The cost of the heat pump alone is probably 1/3 more than a standard system, then you have to add the cost of the ground loop.

    DITBOY New Member

    Updated Information

    Ok, a little more information on my general contractor rep isn't great about email, so I just got the data below tonight. I have a sitdown with the HVAC contractor tomorrow so I hope to have more info then. No news yet on Man J calcs.

    The house is two-story new construction, energy star with a partially finished basement. Wrapped, R-38 ceilings, R-13 (i think?) walls. Finished square footage is 1800 on main floor including 190 sq ft sun room. Finished second floor is 1612 sq ft and finished basement is 770 sq ft with another 850 sq ft unfinished (about 2/3 of which will probably be finished someday). Basement is a walkout, so perhaps 2/3 of it is below grade...almost all of what is unfinished is.

    Average high temp is approx 90 degrees, average low temp is 22 degrees. Avg heating degree days is 4419, avg cooling degree days is 1100. I don't know how accurate some of this data is as it seems to vary from the number of sites I pulled it from.

    So I was off by over 1000 sq ft on my swag...not trying to buy the biggest house, just a nice one to settle down in after uncle sam stops sending me all over the world.

    BTW, I had a conversation with a relative of mine who I found worked at a company that installs lots of GSHPs out in SD, IA and MN and she just about choked when I told her what my first swag from the contractor was. I know, cost of living is significantly different, but it was triple what they charge.

    In any case, any last minute advice before tomorrow?
  7. AMI Contracting

    AMI Contracting A nice Van Morrison song Industry Professional Forum Leader

    I have a problem with your premise that geo "should" be about 1/3 more.
    There are many things that influence price.

    Multiple estimates will help you arrive at what is a fair price in your area.

  8. docjenser

    docjenser Well-Known Member Industry Professional Forum Leader

    Get a heatloss done, that will determine system size. Then describe a bit more what you have for an loop design (closed, open, drilled, horizontal etc) and what kind of distribution system (radiant, forced air for A/C, designated hot water) etc. Things can vary between 30K and 72K, depending on what you want.

Share This Page