For many people, one of the biggest barriers to education can be tuition. And even though enrolling in a vocational program (such as HVAC) can often provide a career-building education at a comparatively low cost, making that initial investment can still be daunting. So, how much does HVAC training cost, and what are some options for how to pay for it? Below, we have a breakdown of paying for your program.
HVAC training cost
While the cost of an associate’s degree in HVAC technology typically ranges from $15,000–$35,000, an HVAC certification only costs on average between $1,200–$15,000 and can be found at many technical schools and community colleges. For both of these programs, however, you’ll also want to consider additional costs that may be required:
- Books and supplies can vary from $500–$1,000.
- Depending on your state, you may have to sit for a licensing exam, which can cost between $50–$150.
- And, you may need to include housing and food into your cost equation as well.
Whether you attend a degree program or a certificate program will also affect how much time you’ll invest. An associate’s degree takes two years to complete. On the other hand, a certificate program takes considerably less — on average, it takes 6–12 weeks to get your certification. For both types of programs, the length can be impacted by factors that include time spent in the classroom, obtaining field experience, or completing internships and apprenticeships.
While it takes 2 years to get an associate's degree,
a certificate program takes 6–12 months!
How can I pay for HVAC training?
Upfront, in full
If you have enough money saved up to cover your program’s tuition, any necessary supplies, and living expenses such as rent and groceries, paying out of pocket is your best option. While this method does require the highest upfront cost, you won’t owe any money in interest, there’s no credit check, and you won’t have to worry about remembering to make monthly payments. Since HVAC programs can cost up to $15,000 for a certification and $35,000 for a degree, look around to see if there are any scholarships or grants available that can help ease the tuition amount!
You may also want to look into programs, such as the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act (WIOA), that are sponsored by the government to provide grants and scholarships for technical schools. With these, you may be able to cover the partial or full tuition amount for your HVAC course! To find out if these are available for your program, you’ll need to contact your school directly.
Pay-as-you-go payment plan
For those who are unable to pay the full tuition cost upfront and aren’t using a scholarship, grant, or employer reimbursement, some schools also offer payment plan options. This allows students to make several smaller payments over the duration of the program, in order to lessen the upfront cost. It includes no credit check and no interest — so you’ll ultimately pay less than you would with a loan. However, payments are spread over a much shorter period of time than other financing options, so although you’ll pay less overall, your monthly payments will be higher.
A student loan can be a good choice for students who need to make the smallest monthly payments, rather than larger payments or all upfront. While not all HVAC schools offer federal student loans, private student loans may still be available. Depending on the loan terms available for your program, you may have the option of full deferral, interest-only deferral, or immediate full repayment.
Climb partners with several HVAC programs for financing, and we only perform a hard credit pull once a loan is funded. So, you can submit an application to check out our options with no impact to your credit score!
There are some things you’ll want to keep in mind, though. Most loans come with an interest rate, which means you’ll ultimately end up paying more than the tuition amount. Your credit will also be pulled once loan funds are sent, so your credit score may be impacted. At the end of the day, you’ll need to consider what works best for your situation — smaller monthly payments while paying more overall, or higher monthly payments while paying less overall.