Any thoughts on the relative merits of a propane furnace vs. heat pump with respect to installation cost, reliability, efficiency? We're building on a ridge in central Maryland. Probably will have 30-40 (??) days per year when the temperature stays below 32.
Without knowing all the details about your specific needs and conditions, my best guess is that propane makes more sense than a heat pump. Here is why:
(1) A propane forced air furnace will likely cost less than 50% of the cost of a heat pump.
(2) With the high number of very low temp. days in your area, the heat pump will have to operate on the 'back up' mode a large part of the time. This will reduce the cost benefit of a heat pump system.