If your newspaper doesn't carry a column called American Energy, this may bring you up to date. as of early this year, air conditioning companies are no longer allowed to produce units with a seer less than 13. That's the energy efficiency rating. It used to be that you paid more (and you probably still do) for an air conditioner of 13 or 14 seer. now that's standard.
The article states that if the homeowner has an AC unit with a seer less than 10, they can save more than 50% on their electric bill by getting one of the newer 14 seer or higher units. I know this doesn't affect some areas as much as Florida, where we live in air conditioning most of the year, but I thought it was good information.
Part of the savings of the newer systems comes from a two stage system where the unit runs in a lower, quieter mode when the weather is not too hot and switches into high gear during sweltering days. The article goes on to describe how different manufacturers achieve the two-stage system and recommends a model which uses ozone-friendly r410a refrigerant instead of the older r-22 coolant. this doesn't mean much to me (it's more of a guy thing), but I do understand that anything that benefits the environment is a good thing.
Just thought I'd pass that along in case you missed it. Saving electricity would certainly be a big factor in attracting buyers to a house. you also get special rebates from Florida power & light for installing newer, more efficient air conditioners.
Perhaps, the savings might be enough to offset the rise in Florida insurance this year.