Cost of Owning A Pool ~ There are a ton of things that come into play when considering the costs of owning a pool. It goes beyond just pool size, installation, and the materials used for it.
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Is it an in-ground pool or above-ground? Will it be indoors or outdoors? Unless you’re eyeing on some Intex blow-up pools, getting your own pool takes a lot of planning, commitment, and budget.
Now, the question is: how much do swimming pools really cost?
Let’s break down each factor and its costs.
These are costs that you encounter during your initial purchase. Basically, if you don’t have the pool built yet, you’d have to pay for the supplies first.
Below are the usual upfront costs for your swimming pool.
Type of Pool Build
The easiest way to get an estimate of your expenses is to decide between an in-ground pool or an above-ground pool.
Changing times call for adaptation. Since the current world is obsessed with convenience, mobility, and affordability, above-ground pools rose to popularity. This is the younger hybrid of the in-ground pool.
Given their name, above-ground pools do not require deep soil excavation for installation. Instead, they are built from the ground up and can be mounted directly on top of soil or ground, not in it.
Conversely, in-ground pools must be installed in-ground where the soil has to be dug up. This type of pool has been popular for millenniums, dating back to as early as 2500 B.C.
Deciding on your pool build from the get-go will determine everything else—from budget down to maintenance—with more ease.
Average costs for building an in-ground and above-ground pool:
They come in a variety of shapes and sizes. Technically, inflatable pools are also located above-ground but let’s cross them out of the list first.
Above-ground pools usually come in kits to be assembled on a large enough area. It can be on your backyard, front yard, inside your house, you name it.
You can either DIY your pool kit or have a professional help you with it.
Generally, they can be a bit challenging to set-up for first-timers but the process is rather simple. How you assemble your pool kit varies depending on the materials used for the pool or your manufacturer.
Above-ground pools can be built in different materials but these are the main ones:
Steel is the sturdiest of them all because it’s resistant to weather and accidental bumps. They cost anywhere from $750 – $4500.
On the other hand, resin lasts the longest but requires hefty maintenance. Resin pools usually incorporate steel as well for sturdier hold. However, the more resin, the more expensive it is. Resin and hybrid pools cost $1,200 – $7,000.
Aluminum is also a lot like steel but is resistant to rust. It’s also lightweight unlike steel but is more expensive. They range from $1,000 – $5,000.
Prepare for a large estimation because these pools vary immensely in all aspects—size, shape, material, and even depth.
But what’s good about that is their customisability. You can design your pool however you want it, allowing you to get the pool you’re longing for.
In-ground pools are classed into three groups according to the material: fiberglass, vinyl, and concrete.
Among the three, fiberglass wins in all aspects. It’s durable, low-maintenance, and all-around stylish. A fiberglass installation can cost you at least $35,000 – $85,000 upfront. It’s the perfect middle-ground between concrete and vinyl.
Concrete is the most expensive but also the most versatile. You can shape it into whatever form you want with ease. Expect to shell out at least $50,000 – $100,000 upfront.
Vinyl, on the other hand, is the least expensive, appealing to consumers who follow a tight budget. The downside? It’s the least durable. Vinyl costs around $27,000 – $40,000.
Above-ground pools have more straightforward pricing according to size than in-ground pools are.
The larger the dimensions you have for an above-ground pool, the more expensive it gets. That’s not always the case for in-ground pools.
Contractors usually have their base fees. They have a set price for construction fees which include excavation, power installation, trimming, contouring, and so on.
Their base price may stay the same for differently-sized pools as long as it fits the contractor’s base budget. However, if the pool becomes too large for its base budget, the contractor will then charge you for an additional sum.
On average, installations for an above-ground pool can cost you at least $1,000 to $7,000 and sometimes even more. Most contractors charge per sq. ft.
The same concept also applies to install an in-ground pool. Contractors will give you the base price then you can work it from there.
Installing an in-ground pool is comparatively costly than an above-ground pool. Wondering how much? A whopping $30,000 – $60,000 which is heaps heftier than installing above-ground.
Price also varies depending on your in-ground pool finish.
The number one mistake pool owners commit is failing to include the hidden expenses in their calculations. These are costs that don’t really pop up until you’ve built your pool.
Most do not really anticipate how impactful these expenses can get overtime. Did you know a concrete in-ground pool can cost you around $30,000 in just a decade? That’s $3,000 a year!
It’s important to consider factors like that before you commit to building your pool.
To avoid the same mistake, here’s a rundown on some hidden costs you should or might consider.
If you see yourself utilizing your pool long-term, then you have to estimate upkeep expenses. The costs typically apply the same across all kinds of pools.
Owning a pool comes with monthly, weekly, even daily tasks if you want your pool spick and span. Check out this chart for a rundown on maintenance costs and how often you should do them:
In addition, you’d also need to pay for electric costs that run your filter. If you leave it running for about 5-24 hours a day, your average cost would be around $25 to $75 a month.
You’d be surprised by the types of pool chemicals in the market. Pool owners know how overwhelming it can be to browse when you’re new to it.
The good news? You don’t have to get every single one of them. Your job is to know which pool chemicals to get.
Here’s a breakdown of the essential chemicals to put in your pool:
Sometimes, nobody has the time to dedicate a few hours on the regular just to clean their pool. This is where paid labor comes in.
You can contact your local company to do the work for you. Most pool maintenance professionals work on a weekly or monthly basis with a rate ranging from $100 – $200.
Their tasks include but are not limited to:
- Checking chemical levels
- Cleaning the pool
- Emptying filter basket
Some also work on a one-time service for an average rate of $75 per hour.
Depending on your material, your pool won’t last a lifetime. If you want your pool to look fresh as the day you installed it, you’ll eventually need a revamp.
You’d also need to adjust to the seasons. There’s a process called winterizing wherein you prep your pool for the coming winter. You can either do this yourself or hire a professional for an affordable sum of $150.
Filling Pool With Water
One common misconception with pool maintenance is pool cleaning. Contrary to what many think, you don’t have to drain a pool every time you clean it.
In fact, you’re only required to replace the water every 5-7 years. Just imagine replacing water on the daily. That would be a waste of money and resources. If everyone did that, the whole globe would be out of water in no time.
So how much does filling the pool with water cost?
It depends on your source how many gallons your pool requires. Usually, most pools need 18,000-20,000 gallons of water to be filled up.
You can either do it yourself with a hose or hire a company for their services. Filling up the pool using your water can cost you about $100 per 15,000 to 20,000 gallons. That’s pretty cheap considering you only have to fill your water for every 5 years.
On the other hand, you can also hire a water company to deliver to you. Just expect to pay a lot higher, around $400.
Note that both come with pros and cons. While cheaper, filling a pool with a garden hose can take you 12-24 hours. That’s not really a viable solution if you’re a busy person. Doing so can also drain your well so be aware of that as well.
Unlike hidden costs and upfront ones, there are some expenses that you don’t necessarily have to go through.
However, it’ll be helpful to know what else you might need to pay for.
Definitely not a requirement, but it’d be nice to have a diving board hanging by the edge in case you get bored.
If you’re a fan of night swimming, you can customize your pool by getting lights as well. These will cost you around $20 – $300.
Slides are also the ultimate pool accessory, especially for kids. If you’re willing to splurge on them, prepare to spend at least $750 – $14,000.
On average, the cost for pool removal ranges from $3,000 – $7,000 for small and medium-sized pools no larger than 15′ x 30′.
If your pool size hits the 20′ x 40′ mark, expect to spend a little more, roughly $10,000 or above.
Most contractors charge on a per-project basis, while there are some who also charge by the hour.
In some cities, they require you to seek assistance from an engineer. They will either give you the green light or not after the filling stage of the pool. Protocols like this exist to ensure the safety of anyone on top of the concrete-filled pool.
Engineers will be the one checking if the newly-filled ground will be stable enough to hold human activity.
Take note that pool services can vary depending on the state you live in so take these computations as mere estimates only.
Knowing the totality of your expenses is key to successfully building your pool. That way, you can plan ahead of time what you can really afford to get.
It’s all part of the process, but a well-planned pool will surely give you positive results.