With the warm summer months on the horizon, a swimming pool could be a much-needed addition to any home. They are, after all, a great and fun way to stay cool. However, swimming pools don’t come cheap and can certainly be challenging to maintain. For some, the cost and maintenance of a swimming pool are worth it, but others may find themselves on the fence about it. When it’s all said and done, is a swimming pool worth the money?
One of our neighbors in our community is building an inground pool in his house. It has been many weeks of construction activity with workers back and forth. It definitely looks like a lot of work and probably a lot of money. I was curious about the swimming pool topic. So, I did my research to find out if it was worth it for us.
Swimming Pool Costs
If your home didn’t already come with a swimming pool, you’d need to have one installed. This process is not just lengthy but very expensive. According to HomeAdvisor.com, building a pool costs between $16,103 and $66,500 on average.
Prices vary depending on how big you want it, whether it is inground or above-ground and what type of material is used. But building the pool is not the end of the expenses that a homeowner will face with this new home addition.
After the pool is built, there are other costs to consider. For instance, pool accessories such as a diving board or pool cover can range from the hundreds to the thousands and don’t include the cost of heating, outdoor furniture, decks, cleaning costs, and more. Even pool toys can end up putting an unexpected dent in your pocket.
Inground pools tend to be a little pricier than above-ground pools, but this isn’t to say that above-ground pools are cheap either. Again, the type of material the pool is made out of can significantly affect the overall cost. For example, an inground vinyl pool tends to be cheaper than an inground concrete pool. Additions such as stairs, a ladder, or even a fountain are also bound to hike up your bill.
Maintenance and Upkeep
Maintaining your pool is yet another chore that many swimming pool owners face. If your pool isn’t covered, you’ll find yourself constantly having to net out leaves, bugs, and even animal feces from the water. Filtration systems only work to a certain extent and may oftentimes need to be replaced.
As with most things, swimming pools are bound to have flaws and will begin to show them over the years. Many times, pools can crack, which leads to a leak. When these leaks are not fixed, the level of water in your pool will go down. As a result, you’ll have to continue filling the pool back up, which can significantly increase your water bill.
Advantages of Owning a Swimming Pool
Now that you know the cost of building a swimming pool, it’s time to go over the pros and cons of owning one. For the most part, people enjoy having a swimming pool. After all, it’s a great way to relax after a long day or cool off during a scorching day. Here are some of the advantages of owning a pool.
Many people depend on public swimming pools, lakes, and beaches to cool off. Unfortunately, these places are often crowded during the summer months. But with your own pool at home, you don’t have to share the water with strangers.
Save Money with a Staycation
If you and your family love to take vacations but are hoping to save a few extra bucks, you can always create the perfect staycation right in your own backyard. Bring out the cold drinks, snacks, and a bottle of sunscreen, and you’re set to have the perfect day off.
Convenient Low Impact Exercise
With a swimming pool in your home, you can also find new ways to exercise. If you’re not a fan of going to the gym, a swimming pool is a great alternative. Swimming is a great cardio workout and can be incredibly beneficial for your heart. Best of all, most exercises on the water are low impact, preventing injuries.
Save on Swimming Lessons for Your Kids
If you have a swimming pool and kids, you will always know where they are. You can take advantage of the opportunity, and rather than spending hundreds of dollars on swimming lessons, you can teach them yourself. Chances are, they’ll learn at a quicker rate since they’ll be more comfortable swimming in their own home.
Entertaining Made Easier
Having a swimming pool makes entertaining easier. It is the perfect way for you to entertain your family and friends. There’s nothing better than spending quality time with them by playing in or just watching others play in the water.
A swimming pool can help bring people together and create wonderful memories between families.
Disadvantages of Owning a Swimming Pool
Aside from the cost, these are other disadvantages that may come with owning a pool.
Where You Live Matters
If you live in an area where it’s only warm for a few short months out of the year, having a swimming pool may not be worth it. After all, not only will you not be able to enjoy it most of the time, but you’ll still have to maintain it regardless of whether or not you’re using it.
Kids Safety Concerns
Another issue that many people have with swimming pools is that they might not feel safe leaving their kids alone unattended in a home where there’s a pool. After all, the chances of an injury or even a fatality go up when there’s a pool involved. Unless your kids are strong swimmers, you’ll never fully be at peace having them around a swimming pool.
Homeowners Insurance Impact
Liability protection provided by home insurance policies is a great way to cover swimming pool-related incidents. For example, coverage can help pay for the medical expenses of someone who trips and falls because of the swimming pool.
A good policy will also provide you with compensation if someone is injured in your swimming pool.
However, most standard home insurance liability coverage may be insufficient if you own a swimming pool. To be adequately covered, you may have to pay more for your homeowners insurance.
Should You Buy An Above Ground Pool? Review and Costs
If your primary concern is the cost, you may be considering an above-ground pool. We can only have an inground pool because of our HOA rules in our community, but this may be an option if you don’t have any constraints. The video below from DoItYourselfDad does an excellent job going over the pros and cons of an above-ground pool. He also goes over all you need to have to enjoy it and how much an above-ground pool costs to operate.
Is a Swimming Pool A Good Investment?
Unlike some investments like kitchen and bathroom remodels, a swimming pool typically doesn’t turn out to be a good investment. That is, you don’t get back the money that you put in. According to Investopedia, having a pool will only boost the value of your home by a maximum of 7% in certain circumstances.
The Resale Conundrum
After you learn that you may not get your money back, you need to consider if you will even get more people at the door at the time of sale. This is tricky because swimming pools are a very polarizing topic. Some love them, and some hate them.
So from a resale perspective, you may be better off not having a swimming pool. Why? Because your house is more likely to get more prospects if it doesn’t have a swimming pool. People who don’t want a swimming pool will be happy. People who must have a swimming pool can always build one later on –assuming you have space in your backyard.
One of the most important things to consider is where you live. Aside from the money and investment considerations, a swimming pool will only be worth it if you get a lot of use out of it. However, if you live up north or somewhere where it rarely gets warm enough to swim, a pool may simply not be worthwhile.
On the other hand, if you live someplace where it’s warm throughout the year, then a swimming pool may be ideal for you and your family. Those who like to entertain often may also find having a pool worthwhile as it’s certainly bound to attract friends and family to your home.
To put it plainly, if you know that you can get a lot of use out of your swimming pool and it’s something you and your family will really enjoy, it will certainly be worth the money, regardless of investment returns. But if your swimming pool will only serve as a decorative piece in your backyard, you may want to consider putting that money into something else.
But don’t let the excitement of owning a pool keep you from making a decision that you’ll regret later. Think about not just the cost of installing or building the pool, but also that of maintenance and upkeep. If a swimming pool simply isn’t within your budget, consider returning to the idea when you’re more financially secure. The last thing you want is to be underwater (pun intended) thanks to a swimming pool.
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