The “coming soon” for sale property sign has competition with the “swimming soon” pool contractors sign in the yard. The COVID-19 pandemic has brought a huge wave of interest and increased desirability for stay-at-home entertainment, but with demand up for pools be prepared for costs to follow the trend.
Realtors are reporting seeing homes with pools sell for $50,000 to $100,000 more than those without, coupled with the homes selling now for a higher price due to the current market conditions. Many buyers now paying more for the homes have new expectations to see a pool in the yard.
Many pool contractors are booked out as far as a year, and the customer will also have to pay more since prices have skyrocketed. Contractors booked far out in advance will not even bother to come out to give a quote.
If you are considering installing an inground pool, here are some points and trends you should consider.
Size. Size varies depending on use and budget, but a typical pool averages 15 feet wide by 30 to 35 feet long. For those who want a pool for laps, its width may be narrowed to 10 feet and length extended to 50 feet.
Depth of water. This typically varies depending on use, which may mean 3½ feet at each end and 5½ to 6 feet deep at center. Other pools may have a shallow depth throughout since fewer people use pools for diving. Others will have a wide shallow step called a “Baja Shelf” to allow an in-water seating area.
Style. Long gone are the kidney-shaped pools of years past. What is in now is a classic, elegant rectangle. Also using big squares of tile on the pool deck with space between for faux grass to create a resort feel.
Heated or not. Due to the cost of heating a pool, many homeowners are using solar. Solar panels are usually installed on the roof of the residence, guest house, or pool house. A homeowner can then install an electric heater that operates on the solar energy panels on the roof to heat the pool. An electric heat pump instead of propane is more expensive up front but will save money in the long run.
Saltwater vs. chlorine. A few years back, having a saltwater pool became popular to avoid chemicals that irritate skin, eyes, and hair, but now some homeowners are finding that saltwater can damage the valve actuators used to open and close the pool pump.
Safety. To keep young children safe, an alarm that senses movement in the water can be installed in the pool. Many homeowners are also forgoing a diving board, opting for a design with a slide instead.