One of the items on your homeownership “must-haves” might be an outdoor swimming pool. But should you buy a house with a pool? Here are some factors to consider when it comes to owning a pool:
What region of the country do you live in? If you live in an area where it is cold for most of the year, you might find that you keep your outdoor pool closed most of the year. If you keep the pool open when it’s cold, expect to pay extra to heat it. Also, expect to spend extra time cleaning it during the Fall. Consider that if you own a pool and live in a climate where it is often cold most of the year, you most likely won’t get your money back when it’s time to sell, as there is little demand for pools in these regions.
Houses with pools are most suitable in warm climates such as the South and some Western states. Although it can still be costly to own a pool in these regions, you may find that you will use it enough to be worth the cost. Also, pools in warm regions can significantly add to your resale value.
There is a lot of maintenance required to keep a pool clean, heated, and working properly. Some pool owners don’t mind the maintenance at all. The pH balance of the pool needs to be checked daily. If it is a concrete pool, it may be more prone to cloudy water and algae. Depending on what kind of filter you have, you may need to clean it a few times each season. If you can justify the costs, some pool owners find it beneficial to hire pool service maintenance companies.
Other costs to consider: the water itself, heating the pool and utility costs, fencing required by your local safety codes, any resurfacing, replacement of parts, pool equipment, toys, flotation devices, pool deck furniture, a pool cover, and liability insurance.
The cost of heating your pool varies by climate, regional utility fees, and how warm you prefer it to be.
The possibility of accidents
It’s something you don’t want to think about but need to if you own a pool. There always needs to be an adult present if children are going to be around a pool. Statistics show that drowning is the leading cause of death between the ages of 1 and 4. You will likely need to set enforceable rules, have a child-proof gate that surrounds the pool and remains locked when no one is swimming, and possibly purchase a pool alarm so neighborhood children don’t wander into your pool.
Owning a pool can affect your homeowners insurance. Because of drowning risks and water-related injuries, some insurance companies consider a swimming pool a big liability. Most standard homeowners insurance policies include a minimum liability coverage limit of $100,000. However, some insurance companies recommend increasing your limit to at least $300,000 or obtaining an umbrella policy to increase your liability coverage.
Make sure you research any additional cost you may incur. Generally, you can shop around for the best deal on insurance depending on your home, location, and other circumstances.