If you’ve always envisioned yourself the proud owner of a backyard pool, what will it take to make that dream a reality? Here’s a step-by-step outline of the process.
Considerations. Building a pool brings benefits and costs. Family fun, hours of relaxation and the beauty of its stone landscaping or decking are among the benefits. Add to that the increase in your home’s value, although it is unlikely to be as much as you paid for the project. Resale value will benefit most in southern states where pools are more valued than in northern, colder climates. The costs are more tangible: construction, maintenance, increased homeowner’s insurance premiums, and repairs as the pool ages. Pool repairs later on can be stiff, especially leakage, so weigh that in your decision.
Find a contractor. Choose your builder carefully. Make a sketch of your yard and where you envision the pool. Through online research and personal recommendations, find three good contractors with solid reputations and have them survey your space and your sketch. Get three design plans with bids before making your decision.
Get approved. With your contractor’s assistance, seek approval from the proper governmental authorities. You’ll need permits and intermittent inspections. If you have a homeowners association, you will need approval from it as well.
Costs. Obviously, the size of your pool is a major factor in cost. So is your choice in materials. A sprayed concrete called gunite is the best and most expensive material. The least expensive is a vinyl pool. In between is a fiberglass pool installed as one piece. Depth of the pool is another determining cost factor, with deeper pools costing more. Added features like waterfalls, fountains, poolside patios and slides also increase costs.
The construction process. Pools are built in three basic stages. Excavation is first and requires the most patience. Next is the framing and utilities, when steel reinforcing is put in place along with plumbing and electrical wiring. Finally, the pool material itself is installed and it begins to look like the final product. The decking, the pump and the filtration system are among the last items installed.
Maintenance and insurance. Regular maintenance to keep the water clear and chemically balanced is a vital part of being a pool owner. So is safety. Local ordinances will require a fence around the pool with a self-closing and locking gate with the latch a certain height to prevent small children from accessing it. Your liability insurance will most certain increase.