Do I Really Want a Swimming Pool?

May 1, 2013

Having your own pool sounds like a dream come true for many people. No more driving to the community pool that must be shared with hundreds of other people. However, not everything about owning a pool is fun or easy. It is important that homeowners consider all of the pros and cons before deciding whether or not to add a pool to their custom home.

Return on Investment

Putting in a pool is a considerable financial investment. In most cases, you will not receive a great financial return on this investment. Nationwide, the return on investment for a pool is about 40-60 percent. Of course, this varies depending on how desirable having a pool is in your area.

Again, depending on where you live, a pool can be an asset or a burden when it comes time to sell. In some areas, most homebuyers will see a pool as a drawback and it may make it harder to sell. In other areas, people will be actively looking for a home with a pool to buy.

The bottom line is that a pool is not a very good financial investment. If you want it for other reasons, that’s great. If not, make a different choice.

Personal Enjoyment

The enjoyment and use that you and your family get out of owning a pool is the real thing it has going for it. If you want a pool because you will use it a lot, it is more likely to be worth it. Pools are a great place for kids to play, adults to exercise and everyone to escape the hot sun. If you don’t anticipate getting a lot of good use out of your pool, it probably isn’t a worthwhile investment. If you do, it may be the best investment you make in your home.

No matter how much you love the pool, consider how much use you will realistically be able to get out of it. In southern areas, the swimming season may extend from March to October or even all year-round for hardy folks. In northern states, there may only be a few months of suitable weather. If you will only be able to use the pool once a week, two or three months out of the year, the cost may not be worthwhile.

Insurance and Maintenance Costs

Owning a pool does create some additional costs even beyond the actual installation. Statistically, pools are a safety hazard and your homeowner’s insurance rates will probably go up accordingly. Good fencing and locks are also required if you have a pool because you can be held responsible for people who injure themselves in it.

Pools require chemicals and equipment in order to remain usable, which are ongoing expenses. Utility bills can also be expected to rise. Electricity is necessary to power the pumps on the filter and some cleaning attachments, and water must be replaced regularly to compensate for evaporation. The price of these utilities may affect your decision as to whether a pool is worthwhile.