There is a certain kind of person for whom aquatic leisure is one of life’s great necessities. I am not this kind of person, but my wife is. It’s why, after two years of living in our last home, she insisted we install a pool. It’s nothing fancy, and I enjoy it, but we had to talk long and hard about the benefits and liabilities of such an investment. In the end, I’m glad we did it. I swim a lot, feel fit, and enjoy entertaining in the summer with the pool as an option for my guests. Here are the considerations we made when looking at a pool for our home.
1) Equity Value. A pool is a big investment. I believe that you should spend your money where you want, but I also want to see a return on any investment I make. For this reason, I had to do some research on how pools add value to the homes they are installed in. The answer is: it depends. It depends largely on where you live and the quality of the pool you put in. If you like in a warm sunny place where a pool is well-nigh essential to life as the culture knows it, then YES, a pool will add a lot of value to your home. In reality, they’re a hassle to install. It can take weeks to dig and install one of these, so that’s something a future buyer would love not to have to pay or wait for. Our last appraiser thought that we would see a 115% return in equity on what we spent for our pool. That’s OK with me. That’s an even better return than the bathroom renovation.
2) Safety. We’ve got a couple little kids, so I wanted to make sure the pool was safe. To make sure that it wasn’t accessible when unobserved, I had one of those clear glass pool fences built around the entire perimeter, and now I know that it’s much safer. Because it’s totally clear, our sightlines are unobstructed. But because it’s unbreakable and tall, we know that our kids are only going to be in the pool when we’re watching them.
3) Hot Tub or No Hot Tub? Not everybody has room for both, but we did. I was actually more excited about the idea of a hot tub than the idea of a pool, so I pushed for this. Luckily we know some pool and spa experts in our area, and they made the installation of both much more affordable than I thought it would be just for the pool. Now we have both. I get to chill out in my hot tub at night, and go for a swim every morning. It’s a great system. The kids like it. Our friends like it. And future homeowners will find it very attractive when we sell our house in a couple of years.
There are plenty more considerations to be made when you think about installing a pool, but these were the big ones for me. I say go for it. Swim in it, enjoy it, share it with people you love.