What does a pool do to the value of my house? THE TRUTH.
Originally posted on: 03/18/2016
Updated on: 03/28/2018
I am told by clients "I understand that a pool will devalue my house and I will not get any money back out of it." I find this fascinating because usually the customer will go on to say that they are currently looking for houses with pools but can’t find anything they like. I also hear that customers bought their current home because they wanted a pool and couldn't find any houses that had pools they felt comfortable with. Despite making those statements the housing industry fails to see the connection.
First let's acknowledge a fact: People want homes with pools, and even more important a pool that is already built and done. Another Fact: If you ask most realtors what a pool does to the value of a home they will typically say it devalues it and "you'll never get your money back." One more fact: though they are usually right, they are not right for the right reasons.
Gunite pool in repair
Approximately half of the Luxury Pools we build are for customers that are currently building a new home, buying their home and want us to start right away, OR have been in their home less than two years and are now ready for a pool. What does that mean? It means people want pools. Most of the time when we interview our clients they tell us they would have settled on a house that they didn't like to have a pool they loved and were comfortable with. A vinyl pool or concrete pool with no history and a lot of guaranteed maintenance to come, didn’t feel right.
The first reason that realtors are often right about pools devaluing property (even though they don't understand) is because of the type of pool. Concrete (or gunite) pools as well as vinyl pools are huge financial liabilities. They require constant maintenance and upkeep. Both types of pools will require $800 to $1,000 minimum in chemical upkeep each year. They will both also require a major renovation (liner replacement or concrete resurfacing) to the tune of $5,000 to $10,000 every 5-7 years. That makes the ownership of a concrete or vinyl pool a liability to the property thereby making it worth less, no different than if it were to need a new roof installed immediately upon you purchasing a home.
Vinyl pool failure
The second reason that pools can be liabilities to real estate is that when a vinyl or concrete pool is built in the back yard, it's exactly that, built in the back yard. The final pool product is the sum of the materials used, the mood and experience of the crew installing it, and the site conditions in the back yard at the time. Very little means for quality control exist in the back yard. All of these factors are unknown when you are looking at buying a home with an existing vinyl or concrete pool and there is almost no way to evaluate the quality of construction once a pool is done.
Fiberglass will always look the same with no repairs
A fiberglass pool on the other hand is a manufactured product. It is built in a factory, in a controlled environment with quality control procedures in place, and just like the appliances and cabinets in the house, a fiberglass pool comes with a warranty backed by the manufacturer. Luxury Pools offers a full 35 year structural warranty that is even TRANSFERABLE to the next owner of the home! Fiberglass pools, unlike a vinyl and concrete pool require no renovation work. No liner will ever need swapped, no resurfacing and painting will ever be needed. Once a fiberglass pool is in, it's done. Meaning no future work and much lower cost of ownership and financial liability.
From an ownership standpoint clearly this lack of major renovation is a very attractive reason to have a fiberglass pool. From a RESALE standpoint it is just as huge. If the time ever comes to sell your home image how nice it will be to tell a prospective buyer that there is still 20 or 30 years left on the manufacturer’s warranty! That’s pretty powerful! Over the years a few of our pools have changed hands through home sales. These homes have sold VERY quickly and the new owners have told us that they were specifically looking for homes with pools and were attracted to the TRANSFERABLE factory warranty and the history of the team that put it in.