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Getting An HVAC System Quotation – What Separates A Good Quotation From One That Is Just “Okay”?

April 22, 2020
Posted in: Homeowner Tips

So you are considering making changes to your existing HVAC system.  Perhaps you are looking to upgrade, perhaps something more energy efficient, and something that will be supported by a parts and labour warranty?

You’ve likely also heard that you should get at least 2 to 3 quotes in order to have something comparative to look at.

Another great resource to consider reading on this topic would be our blog “What questions should the salesperson be asking you to make sure you get the best value from your new HVAC system?

Back to the topic at hand…

So you contact 3 local companies and arrange to have a sales person from each come out to your home.  You notice almost immediately that all 3 have a very different approach.  See our future blog on “What questions should your HVAC sales consultant be asking you?” for more insight on this topic.

However when it’s all said and done, you have 3 different prices, all provided in differing formats.  How do you intelligently dissect the differences to insure you make the right decision when it comes time to part with your hard earned dollars?

How is the quote presented?

1 . In this scenario, the salesperson left you with some brochures for the furnace and AC system you discussed. He scribbled a few numbers on each of the brochures and gave you verbal assurance that this included everything necessary for a complete job.

This is not a quote! This is an ill attempt at simply giving you some pricing and lacks the type of effort that should be put into creating a detailed quotation for you to weigh against your other options.  Chances are that this salespersons price will be the lowest.  There’s a reason for that.  There has been no investment on the part of the company they represent to develop a sales system and procedure, or proper documentation to be presented to the customer.  If a company can’t put sufficient effort into acquiring your business, just how well do you think they will do the work?

2 . In this example, the salesperson has a nice branded folder that they have taken the time to place some product information into along with some information about the company they represent. This is referred to as a sales presentation folder. When it comes time to create the quotation, a carbonless copy/duplicate form is pulled from the folder and the salesperson has to hand write in the models of the various system components you have discussed for your proposed replacement, along with their associated prices.  This document has the company’s logo and contact information on it, and there is some handwritten information stating that “the quoted price includes complete installation” but that is it.  A copy is left for you with the presentation folder for you to go over, and the salesperson arranges to follow up with you in a day or so.  It is hand written so depending on the salespersons penmanship, it may be difficult to read.

While this is certainly light years ahead of the example in scenario #1, it is lacking some key details that, you as a person who is not familiar with the industry, may not even be the slightest bit aware of.  They have done a good, and important job of identifying the exact models of the units that you should expect to have installed in your home, however some very key aspects of the information surrounding that installation process have been omitted.  Not necessarily because they have anything to hide, but because who wants to sit there and write all those details out for every quote they do.  If they don’t, how do you, the customer, know for sure what is and is not included?

3 . In this final example, this salesperson also has a presentation folder that is branded with the company’s logo and information about their services. They too have made sure that it is complete with the product flyers and information that is relevant to your request.

As an additional portion of their service, the salesperson has a very thorough checklist that they use to gather important details about the work you are looking to get done and about your home.

When it comes time to put the quotation together, this sales person uses that checklist as a reference tool to make sure that their quote covers all the bases.  Instead of a hand written quote though, the salesperson pulls out a tablet and opens the company’s software that they use to create their quotes, schedule their work, collect important details about you as the client, and where the job will eventually get invoiced.  They seamlessly choose the various options and job related details that are necessary to make sure that nothing gets left out of your job, or your quote; and when they are through with creating this quote, it gets emailed to you in a PDF format that is easy to read and understand.

It includes important (yet often overlooked) details such as a line item that clearly describes what you as the client can expect with your installation:

“Includes sheet metal supply air transition, 1″ filter rack and pleated filter, return air boot, maximum 20 feet each (intake and exhaust) 636 PVC vent piping, 3/4″ PVC drain line to a local floor drain, connection to existing electrical power/gas piping/control wiring,. Complete set up and commissioning of the furnace as per the manufacturer’s instructions.”

There is a very good chance that company #3 will have a slightly higher price point than that of #2 and certainly #1, however once you consider the added value that their investment in systems provided for you, your decision to spend a little more to get a whole lot more, should be very easily made!

This salesperson will not only follow up with an email in a day or so, they will also call and offer to make sure that you have the clearest understanding of what they have proposed to you.  Their company values the importance of making sure that you, as the customer, get all your questioned answered.  However, it is highly likely that you will have very few unanswered questions based on how thorough their quotation was right out of the gate!

If you haven’t figured it out already, company #3 is Taunton Trades Ltd.  This is our process, and we take great pride in it.

If you are in the market for a new furnace, air conditioning system, indoor air quality product, or any other HVAC related service, then please let Taunton Trades Ltd. have an opportunity to display the difference our approach makes to the whole experience of buying HVAC systems.

Gladly serving the communities of Durham Region (Pickering, Ajax, Whitby, Oshawa, Courtice, Bowmanville, Newcastle, Port Perry and Uxbridge) for the last decade!

We keep you cool when it’s hot, and warm when it’s not!

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