You may have fantasized about adding a swimming pool to your home and elevating its cool factor but owning a pool requires a lot more work than just planning a fancy installation. It may be all fun and games for those who visit your house as guests and use the pool, but as a pool owner, it’s going to require you to put some serious work into planning, maintaining, and caring for it.
Buying a swimming pool is a big investment you’re making, so you want to make sure you’re getting your money’s worth. Don’t just buy the first thing you see that excites you. It may end up being the wrong choice for you and your home. Here’s a detailed guide with ten tips on what you should take into consideration before buying your swimming pool.
1. Ask Yourself Why You Want A Pool
Before going ahead and paying for a full-fledged swimming pool in your backyard, you must spend some time asking yourself why you want a pool at all. Answering this question for yourself can help you make quicker decisions with regard to swimming pool size, depth, and other features. If your plan is to just get a pool to relax, a plunge pool will be enough to satisfy your needs. If you just want to create a focal point in your backyard, smaller options may satisfy you. However, if you want to use the swimming pool to exercise and are likely to host your kids’ friends, a lap pool will be able to serve your needs better.
2. Do You Want An In-Ground Or Above Ground Pool?
Whether you opt for an in-ground or above ground pool will depend largely on the nature of the land in your backyard. In-ground swimming pools tend to offer a more rigid feel and support but they require excavation of the soil which can become an expensive affair. These are also suited to flat land so if your backyard has steep or uneven land, this isn’t the option for you. For uneven or steep lands, above ground pools are a better option. These don’t require soil excavation and can be completed with the right decking to give your backyard a wow factor.
3. Check If Your Backyard Can Handle It
Sloping and steep land in your backyard will result in higher installation costs so check if your site is suited for the type of swimming pool you want to install. Constructing a pool will be a tricky task if you have to deal with ground conditions such as a high water table or unstable, sandy, or rocky soil. Urban sites also tend to have strict requirements for where a pool can be positioned within the boundary of a property so take this into consideration. You’ll also want to check whether shading from adjacent buildings or nearby trees are limiting how much you can enjoy your pool.
4. What Material Do You Want Your Pool To Be Made Of?
Swimming pools can be fibreglass, concrete, or vinyl liner pools. While vinyl liner pools have low initial cost, maintaining them is more expensive and they wear out more easily. There’s a lot of flexibility offered with concrete pools but they’re more expensive options and involve higher lifetime costs. They also take longer to install. With fibreglass pools, installation is quick and maintenance is easy due to their gel coated surface. The advantages they offer have made them the most popular pool type used today.
5. Plan To Position It Correctly
Your pool builder needs to check where utilities like gas, water, telephone, and electrical cables are located. Regulations relating to pool fencing, site coverage allowance, and proximity to storm water drains need to be considered while deciding where to position your swimming pool. You need to consider the following when deciding where to position your pool: Keep it in view of your sightline from the house, especially if you have children.
Use screens to provide shelter form wind exposure as this will cool water and cause greater evaporation.
Keep it warm by positioning it in a place that maximizes exposure to sunlight. Large trees can not only block the sun, but also cause more leaves to fall in the water.
The pool should be easily accessible for people trying to enter and exit it. Position it in such a way that you have easy access to pool cleaner, filtration equipment, toys, and sun umbrellas.
6. Factor In The Costs Involved
When you’re deciding on buying a pool, factor in the cost of installation as well as lifetime costs of maintaining the pool as this will give you a better idea of what you’ll eventually end up spending on the pool.
7. Consider Pool Design And Features
Swimming pools are available in multiple designs, shapes, and features. Some common design options include:
- Rectangular pools
- Oval pools
- Figure 8 pools
- L shaped pools
- Roman or Grecian pools
- Kidney pools
- Freeform pools
- Geometric pools
Besides the shape of your swimming pool, you must also consider what additional features you want. There are multiple features that can make your swimming pool a more exciting place for you to be in. Some of these features include:
- LED lights
- Water fountains
- Pool seats
- Pool decking
- Smart pool upgrades
You need to pick features that you think will enhance your experience in the pool. For example, LED lights can give you colour changing options that will help you create the perfect environment and mood around your pool for any gathering.
You can even opt for smart pool upgrades that will make pool maintenance easier for you and help you save on energy bills.
8. Stay Updated About Your Area’s Fencing Laws
It’s a legal requirement for swimming pools and spa pools to be fenced. While country legislations exist, there may be some differences between states with regard to their fencing laws and permits for swimming pool owners. You need to make sure you get in touch with your local council or state consumer affairs department to stay updated about the fencing laws in your area so that you can meet your legal responsibility as a pool owner. This is another area where hiring a professional pool builder will come in handy as they will be aware of fencing laws and can guide you on the same. Still, it’s a good idea to do the research yourself and be aware of it.
9. Choose A Trusted Pool Builder
The key to having a well installed pool that functions properly is utilising the services of a trusted pool builder. With a professional builder, you’ll be able to gain permits easily, comply with building and fencing laws, and choose a pool type that will work best for the nature of your land and home. Pool installation is not an easy task and while DIY options are available, they don’t come with the same guarantee that a professional can provide. Moreover, if something goes wrong, you’re pretty much on your own if you choose a DIY option. To choose a credible pool builder, make sure you get recommendations from people you know that have had a pool installed. Also look up customer reviews online to be sure that their work is satisfactory.
10. Take Landscaping Into Consideration
You need to plan for your swimming pool keeping in mind the landscaping of the area. If you want more landscaping in your backyard, you’ll have to decide the pool size accordingly. You can also choose to have a larger pool with lesser landscaping in your backyard. Whatever you decide, it must complement one another to give your backyard a cohesive look.