Money is always going to be an issue with an air conditioning service job, especially if you are the average home owner and you are operating on a budget.
So in contacting an AC service company, consider asking the following questions so you'll have a clearer idea on what to expect:
1. Do you offer in-house financing for my purchase?
-- Okay, this is something that a lot of the more reputable HVAC dealers are very good about doing. If can really make the process that much easier for a home owner who is on the fence about what kind of system to install, or whether to install one at all, given that it might be an "elective" decision. many AC dealers can arrange for low interest rates and very fair payments, and of course it is in their interests to do that, because they want to put you into one of their systems.
2. Will the person installing the system be bringing an estimate for my approval?
-- What you want to know is that the estimate will be presented to you in writing, and you will have to sign off on it before any work takes place. You want to be in a position where only the work you authorize is done, and that at some point in the process it is put before you. If they do it afterward, anything can happen, and usually does.
3. Is there the possibility of there being a number of hidden costs involved?
-- You could phrase this question any way you want, but you want to know that when the estimate is put before you, it is exactly what you are going to pay. Don't settle for "Oh, around X amount of dollars," because that leaves wiggle room. If you want to leave wiggle room, fine. Most folks don't do that. Instead, they want t know that at the end of the job they aren't hit with all kinds of costs, incidental or not, that they never counted on. Getting this straight up front is the best way to go.
4. Who do I pay - you or the installer?
-- It would be a nice thing to know when to have the check or credit card ready, and how the payment procedure is going to work. In many situations, you'll just write the check out to the company and give it to the installer. You may do this before the job, or after the job. Find out, if there is an issue of getting money ready or positioned in the right account.