While choosing a heating system may not be the decision that you’re most excited about making when building your new home, it’s an important one.

Costs are always increasing when it comes to the hydro needed to run your furnace.

Fortunately, heating systems have become more energy efficient to compensate for the rising cost in hydro. The most difficult part of choosing a heating and cooling system is evaluating the ratio of up front costs, to the costs that you will incur later on.

In some cases, your options will be limited depending on where your property is located. Many properties are not serviced with natural gas. In some cottage country areas, geothermal can be extremely costly to install depending on ground conditions.

For certain properties, an electric furnace may be the only option. If this is the case, and you are keen on energy savings, there are other upgrades you can do to save on heating and cooling costs. For more on this check out our post on insulation

Here are some common types of heating systems we put in new homes and cottages.

Electric Furnace

Electric furnaces are one of the most common choices. They are economical to install but slightly more expensive to run in Manitoba right now. Most people will use this when natural gas is not an available option. With this option, you would need a separate air conditioner (A/C) cooling unit.

Natural gas

Right now in Manitoba, natural gas furnaces are cheaper to run than electric furnaces. Most people choose this over electric if they have the option. One added costs of this can be bringing the natural gas from the road to the house.

On smaller lots, this wouldn’t be a huge cost consideration. However, on a large country lot, where the home is located at the back of a large property, it can get expensive, as it’s a long distance from the road, which can require more installation costs.

With this option, you would need a separate air conditioner (A/C) cooling unit.



Geothermal is by far the cheapest system to run. It is substantially more expensive to install at the beginning, but has huge long-term savings potential. Depending on the statistics you read, a geothermal set up can pay for itself from anywhere between 9 to 15 years.

If you truly want an energy efficient heating system, geothermal heating and cooling is the way to go. Geothermal also has the additional advantage of not needing a cooling unit as it is designed to both heat and cool your house.

To help in the cost of geothermal there may also be grants offered Manitoba Hydro, the provincial government, and the federal government.

In Floor Heating

In floor heating is fantastic. It feels great on your feet and is extremely efficient because it rises evenly throughout the room from the bottom up.  It is an extra cost at the beginning but definitely has immediate and long-term benefits. Usually, in floor heating is used in addition to another primary heat source. It can be a great addition to areas where you spend a lot of time standing in our home.

Regardless of the types of heating systems that suit your needs, wants or property we can help you sort through the options to find the solution that is right for you.

In floor heating garage

In floor heating being installed in a garage.

Alternative Heating Sources

Solar power

In many provinces, solar power heating can be a huge advantage over the other heating choices. However, in Manitoba, the price of electricity is lower than many other places making the cost of solar power installation cost prohibitive.  

Installing solar power on a standard home can be the cost of a second mortgage. However, the option is available and may be a great solution for you depending on your circumstances and location of your property.

These systems are popular on island locations found in Lake of The Woods, as getting electricity there can be extremely expensive if it’s even possible and hydro in Ontario is more expensive than Manitoba.

Wood heat

While we don’t have a lot of requests for people wanting to heat their home or cottage entirely with wood stoves, it is very popular as an auxiliary heat source.

It can definitely help with your heating costs on our long Manitoba winters. Plus, who doesn’t love the heat of a good fire!


Pine Creek Homes

Whatever your choice of heating you decide to use, Pine Creek Homes and their team has experience installing the system and can make sure you are kept warm in the winter, and cool in the summer. We’ve been a Winnipeg custom home builder for over 40 years.  Contact us today with any questions you have about heating your dream home.


One last thing…

If you want to learn more about what’s involved in building your dream home I suggest that you sign up for our Home Builder Walkthrough, it’s a once a week email series that walk you through all the stages of building a house, and will answer a lot of questions you may not have thought of yet.

If you're ready to take the next step toward building your dream home or cottage, click the link below to set up a time to speak with us.

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And, if you haven’t yet signed up for our email series, make sure to do so below. These emails will take you through a step-by-step guide of the building process, so you can be fully informed and prepared for your upcoming build.

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