Buying a house in the current inflated real estate market is a huge struggle. Renovating your home to mold it into the living space you desire it to be is even more expensive. As people spent more time in their living rooms and backyards during the pandemic quarantine periods, they desired to add a few more amenities to their properties.
Adding a swimming pool used to be a sign of luxury, and it still kind of is to an extent depending on what type of pool you own. Adding an inground pool is the most expensive option for families who want to swim at home. These pools are built underground in the yard, with the entire surface of the pool being flush with the grass.
You could decide to go with an above-ground pool or a semi-inground pool to save a little more money, but there are concerns with these pools too. You also should consider insurance for swimming pools to make sure you don’t lose a bunch of money when your pool gets damaged. We’ll talk about all of these things and more to help you budget for a pool.
#1 – Save Money Across a Long Period of Time
When you decide a swimming pool might be something you want to purchase for your home, you immediately need to decide what type of pool you want. The average price of an above-ground pool is a little over $2,500, but this varies by region. The average price of an inground pool is over $30,000. That’s a massive price difference.
Once you have decided what pool you want, start a savings account specifically for your pool purchase. You then save money in the account like you would save for any other item or you want in life. Put a little money in the account each month, and make sure you build it into your budget each month so you know you’re not spending too much.
Since a pool isn’t a necessity, consider cutting back on other entertainment since you’re going to be spending it on the pool. Cut cable TV and choose a few movie or music streaming platforms. Don’t eat out as often or go to the coffee shop multiple times a day. Take the money you’d put towards these items and add it to your pool savings account.
One warning you should listen to before making a final decision is whether your pool is just for adults, or whether your children are also going to enjoy it. Start swimming lessons with your little ones so they know whether the water is something they enjoy and to see if they have the skills to swim in the pool.
#2 – Think About Your Yard Space
Sometimes your property dictates what type of pool you can install or put up in your yard. If your house has a very small yard, like many houses in congested areas are now stuck with, you might be forced to get something very small.
You can buy a small steel pool from Home Depot, Lowe’s, or Ace Hardware for less than $1,000. Look during the end of the summer for deals when they’re closing out products for the season.
Having a small swimming pool is not only kind for your budget, it also makes sure your child is in less danger in the pool. Pool safety is one of the most important topics when kids get around the water. Drowning is one of the top causes of death for kids under 10.
If you aren’t satisfied with your yard space and what it allows in terms of pool sizes, you could always see if your neighbor or a friend will let you help pay for a pool to share in their backyard. Teamwork is always the best way to save money and have fun on a budget.
#3 – Get Insurance for a Pool
Swimming pools are a big investment, and they need to be protected by insurance like any other expensive item you own. Homeowners insurance doesn’t automatically cover your swimming pool, so you need to talk to your agent about what policy to buy to make sure the pool is covered in case of any damage.
It should be noted that you’re not going to be able to file a successful claim if the damage was caused by you ignoring the pool or not taking care of it. Mold or mildew that ruins the bottom of the pool surface is not going to be covered by any insurance policy. You’ll need to empty the pool of water and hire a professional to clean the pool with money out of your own pocket.
If you have an inground pool installed, you need to ask if your homeowners insurance pays for covered structures on your property. Comprehensive policies typically do, but it’s always important to make sure. Some insurance companies won’t cover anything related to your pool unless you have a gate or fence to protect the pool from intruders like animals or criminals.
If you find that your homeowners insurance rate will increase with the addition of a pool, look into all available insurance discounts, including the popular practice of bundling home and auto insurance.
You also need to be careful to only invite people over to play in your pool if they’re responsible and make good decisions around the water. You’ll be liable for anybody who gets hurt on your property from a swimming pool accident.
#4 – See if Pools Increase Your Home’s Value
Adding an above-ground pool is fun and affordable, but it doesn’t present any value to the overall package of your property. Adding an inground pool or a semi-inground pool can have a dramatic impact on the price of your home when it’s time to sell years down the road. This is something to think about, much like any other investment you’d make that appreciates.
Talk to your realtor about how much the price of the home will increase after installing an inground pool before you go through with the purchase. This way you won’t be spending money on something that doesn’t add the value you expected to begin with.
You can see how much thought and planning you have to do before you decide to go through with the purchase of a swimming pool. Decide whether you want an inground pool or an above-ground pool. See if everyone can swim before they go in your pool so they don’t drown or get hurt in any other way. If everyone is safe, the swimming pool experience is wonderful because there are benefits of having your own swimming pool.
Shawn Laib writes and researches for the insurance comparison site, Clearsurance.com. He wants to help people figure out how to budget for big purchases like a swimming pool.