Adding a swimming pool to your home is not a project you should undertake lightly.
We’re not here to put you off installing a pool, we’re here to help you get this right, and that starts with close and careful planning before launching in and ending up with unsuitable or unsustainable pool.
So, rather than getting carried away with the moment and committing to a swimming pool project that doesn’t make the right fit, explore our guide to things to consider when building a pool first.
I. 15 Things to Think About Before Building a Swimming Pool at Home
- Think about why you really want a pool
- Consider your intended usage
- Research the different types of swimming pool
- Size matters
- Assess the suitability of the site
- What materials will you use for construction?
- Think about financing your pool
- When do you need your swimming pool?
- Safety first
- Do you want your pool to make a striking visual statement?
- Do you need any special features?
- Are you considering any backyard amenities poolside?
- How will you maintain your swimming pool?
- Will a swimming pool raise the value of your home?
- Do you plan to stay in your home?
1) Think about why you really want a pool
Get the whole family together so you can all pitch in why you do or don’t want a swimming pool.
You can discuss whether you prefer the idea of a hot tub or spa, or whether you’re looking for a full-scale pool experience.
Take everyone’s views into account and understand that installing a pool could mean months of disruption for the whole family. Only you know whether that’s worth it.
2) Consider your intended usage
Are you fond of swimming laps? If so, you’ll find special lap pools to make this easier.
If you’re looking to undertake any kind of hydrotherapy sessions, a hot tub or spa makes the smoothest fit.
For anyone with the budget and the real estate, a recreational pool is perfect for entertaining guests of all ages.
Think also about how many people will be using the pool. Are kids liable to use the pool? If so, will they be having friends over, and will you be hosting pool parties?
By taking some time out to closely consider your intended usage, you’ll be better placed to navigate tge different types of swimming pool.
3) Research the different types of swimming pool
Swimming pools come in more types than you might imagine.
The first broad division comes between in-ground pools and above-ground pools. An in-ground swimming pool costs from $28,000 to $55,000 in the United States. Annual running costs come to anywhere from $2000 to $5000+ so installing an in-ground pool isn’t cheap.
Above-ground pools, by contrast, are much cheaper, more portable, and in most ways more versatile.
You’ll also find swimming pool in many shapes and sizes, as well as pools dedicated to fitness, relaxation, and hydrotherapy.
If you’re stuck for ideas, check out our guide to the different types of swimming pool.
4) Size matters
You need to consider how much space you have at your disposal for a swimming pool, and you’ll also need to think about your budget.
You will also need to consider any local zoning laws and ordinances before breaking ground. Consult with your contractor for advice.
5) Assess the suitability of the site
You should think about getting an engineering report before constructing your swimming pool.
Soil tests are essential to determine the suitability of the site. The soil needs the right conditions for long-term sustainability.
6) What materials will you use for construction?
Swimming pools are typically made from the following materials:
- Fiberglass composite
These pools are usually fixed to a steel or aluminum wall frame.
In many ways, the landscaping of your yard will influence what materials would work best for your swimming pool.
7) Think about financing your pool
You can go about financing a home swimming pool just like any other addition to your home. Common options include:
- Home loans
- Lines of credit
- Home equity accounts
Bear in mind before you get started that you are likely to spend more than you budgeted, so ensure you have a buffer zone in place to defray any unexpected expenses.
8) When do you need your swimming pool?
If you like the idea of in-ground pool for a wedding in three months from now, you should rethink that.
You should speak with the contractor to get an accurate estimate of the expected timeline. Building a pool from start to finish could take months, so make sure you keep your expectations reasonable.
An above-ground pool can easily be in place the same day you decide to get one, so all that counts is finding what’s right for you.
9) Safety first
Are you likely to have children using the swimming pool? How about non-swimmers?
Pools safety should be uppermost in your mind, from the planning stage on through construction and into daily use.
10) Do you want your pool to make a striking visual statement?
If you’re lucky enough to have a larger home and garden, you may want an architectural pool or an infinity pool. Both of these will make a strong and commanding statement.
For anyone more limited by real estate in the yard, you may need to get creative with design and placement to bring out the best in the space without compromising on your pool.
11) Do you need any special features?
Lighting will enhance the ambiance poolside, while pool furniture is ideal for allowing you to relax poolside.
You could also think about water features and a mini bar area.
Play areas liven up any pool, while there are also plenty of options for underwater seating.
The right pool cover will also keep safety first while streamlining the process of covering your pool.
12) Are you considering any backyard amenities poolside?
From a full swim-up bar and outdoor kitchen to a firepit and outdoor shower area, you have almost limitless options when it comes to kitting out your poolside with those things that will improve your overall experience.
13) How will you maintain your swimming pool?
All pools come with a fairly heavy degree of maintenance.
Beyond this, you’ll also need to stay on top of the water chemistry levels. This involves using test kits.
Ask yourself whether you are prepared for the commitment and costs of this maintenance or whether you prefer the idea of hiring a pool maintenance service. If so, you should research how much this will cost in your area before committing to a new pool.
14) Will a swimming pool raise the value of your home?
Years ago, a swimming pool would almost always add value to your home.
Over the years, though, many people discovered that owning and maintaining a pool may be an awesome experience, but it’s also costly and challenging.
You should also set off the costs of building your pool against any potential increase in value.
While there is every chance you could increase the value of your home by adding a swimming pool, this should not be your primary reason for getting one.
15) Do you plan to stay in your home?
Unless you own your home and plan to stay there for some time, it probably doesn’t make sense to install an in-ground pool.
While you can never be certain what the future holds, you likely have some idea how long you plan to stay in your home. This should be reflected in the type of pool you install.
There is no doubt that having a swimming pool at home can be a rewarding addition to your yard, but it also comes with a great deal of upkeep and running costs to consider.
Rather than rushing in blindly, take the time to assess whether you really need a pool, and if so, whether you have the commitment to follow through on maintenance (or the budget to hire in a pool crew).
It might be that you decide using the community pool is the best option overall, and if so you have saved yourself from making a costly mistake. If you decide to go ahead and install a pool, let us know how you get on!
Before you go today, take a moment to bookmark Wild River Country. As always, we have a very busy content calendar for the coming months. We’ll be bringing you plenty more guides to swimming pool ownership as well as helping you to choose all the right pool gear at the best prices. See you soon!