Home Canada Real Estate The Pros and Cons of Buying a House with a Pool
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The Pros and Cons of Buying a House with a Pool

by Andra Hopulele
5 min. read

When looking for a house, many people have a wishlist and ideally, you want to tick off as many things as possible. A swimming pool may well be on your list, and at first glance, why not? There’s a lot to love about having your own private pool in the backyard. 

However, it’s good to take a look at the other side of the coin. Owning a pool means taking care of it, and that’s no small task. If you’re wondering whether to buy a house with a swimming pool, check out the pros and cons below!

The advantages of buying a house with a pool

From exercise to socializing, a pool in your yard can make you the envy of the neighborhood.

It’s great for body and soul

Swimming is an excellent, low impact exercise, and as such it’s the ideal sport for those looking to ease into getting in shape. It’s also great for cooling off after a long day at work, or the ideal wake up treatment. You don’t necessarily have to swim for exercise either. Relaxing by the pool with a cold drink and a good book is a great way to spend a luxurious, lazy afternoon.

Ideal for socializing

But why keep it to yourself? Poolside is the best place for socializing on those warm summer days. Gather a few friends and enjoy relaxing or partying in the tranquil waters. For younger kids, a swimming pool is a great place to hang out with their friends, and it can be the focal point of many parties and playdates, especially if yours is the only pool in the neighborhood.

It can be a good look

There’s no doubt that a well-designed pool can look amazing. Working with the design of the rest of your home, the pool can act as either backdrop or focal point, adding a whole new dimension.

It can add value in the right market

If you’re buying a home in an area where there’s a high demand for pools, i.e. sunnier areas, it could be worth thinking ahead. When the time comes to sell, your home will probably demand a higher price because it has a swimming pool.

The disadvantages of buying a house with a pool

While there are lots of things to love about having a swimming pool, it’s well worth considering the following disadvantages. These somewhat outweigh the advantages, and you may be surprised at how cumbersome a pool can become.

Maintenance woes

In ads, pools look stunning. In reality, however, it takes a continuous effort to get your pool looking its best. You can hire a company to take care of it, but this will typically cost around $500 a month. If you plan to maintain it yourself, you’ll need to become well versed in the necessary chemicals and other cleaning products. You’ll also need to spend a fair amount of time each week cleaning filters, fishing debris off the surface, and ensuring the PH level is safe for use.

Expensive to repair

Keeping a pool rolling along is expensive enough, but fixing it if something goes wrong can cost you far more. Most pools have a protective vinyl lining in place, to prevent mold growth. Fixing a tear in this lining can cost around $200, while replacing it outright can cost a minimum of $1,700. Leaks need professional care as well, and can cost between $350 for a slow leak, to more than $1000 for a more major issue.

Safety risks

The risk of drowning is a major concern, primarily for children, but also pets, wild animals, and adults who have perhaps had a little too much party punch. Diving boards are another risky element, with many children and adults sustaining diving-related injuries on poorly placed boards. Another, perhaps less obvious risk, is getting sick from dirty or contaminated water. Ear infections, diarrhea, rashes, and respiratory infections are all common sicknesses caused by exposure to contaminated pool water.

Added insurance

With additional risks, your insurance premium is sure to go up, as you’ll need to cover pool accidents and other safety issues. You can take measures to reduce your premium, such as fitting a gated fence around your pool — indeed, in some areas, this is required by law.

Higher energy bills

Pools, especially heated ones, consume a fairly large amount of energy, so you can expect your energy bills to rise while the pool is in use. The pool pump alone will typically add around $300 a year, while running a pool heater can cost anywhere between $100 and $600 a month, depending on the type.

Difficult to market

When considering selling your home in the future, the fact that it has a pool can be a huge turn-off for some buyers. This is mostly down to location. For example, if the climate in your area only allows a couple of months of pool usage, many people would rather avoid it in the first place.

Takes up space

If you have other plans for your yard, you might find that a pool takes up valuable space. This is especially true for those with pets or children who are into sports.

Extra inspection fees

Buying a home with a pool is likely to cost you more even before you’ve moved in! During a home inspection, most inspectors aren’t qualified to check the pool, so you’ll need to hire a specialist. A certified pool inspector will normally cost around $300, on top of what you’re already paying for the home inspector.

Buying a home with a pool often comes down to location and personal preference. If the weather is suitable and demand is high for a pool, and there are a number of affordable maintenance companies out there, it can be a great way to enjoy the sunshine. On the other hand, if you’d only use it a few times a year, the extra work and extra costs may not be worth it for you.

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