Choosing a fireplace is a huge decision. Sometimes you have no choice in the matter, because of what is included in the home you’ve purchased. But when you have the opportunity to choose between a gas fireplace and an electric fireplace, you are undoubtedly going to carefully weigh the pros and cons of each one before making your final decision.

Electric fireplaces have become popular in recent years. The convenience of being able to go to the store and return home with a fireplace in a box is a hard temptation to resist. They are essentially a simulation of an actual fire-burning fireplace, functioning more as an elaborate space heater.

These type of fireplaces are most popular with home owners who have children or pets, as it reduces the risk of either coming close to being burned by an actual flame.

Gas fireplaces are the real deal. These are the type of fireplaces that you think of when people talk about curling up next to an open fire with a good book or a cup of hot cocoa. Ceramic logs are used to hide the burner and spread the fire, achieving the classic look of a real wood fire.

One of the knocks against gas fireplaces is that they require a chimney. Gas fireplaces burn natural or propane, producing a small of carbon monoxide that must be vented out. But the addition of a gas fireplace can also add value to your home, should you decide to sell later on down the road.

There are advantages and disadvantages to both options. Your best course of action is to decide which one best fits your own personal living situation. You should also consider your personal finances, as both require very different financial commitments with regard to the initial costs and upkeep.