How to Save Money on Your Swimming Pool?

Have you been dreaming about spending weekends and evenings in your own private backyard oasis? One of the most enjoyable features to add, of course, is a swimming pool. However, it’s not a cheap addition. Here’s how you can save money on your swimming pool.

According to Fixr, the average cost of an in-ground 32′ by 16′ swimming pool is $22,000, but different factors can quickly double (or even triple) that amount.

To get the pool you want while also sticking to your budget, here are the different factors that will impact your costs. Then, you can decide where you’ll spend and where you’ll save.

Know your liner material options

There are three materials that pool liners are commonly built from today and they are vinyl, fiberglass, and concrete/gunite. Fixr reports that vinyl is the cheapest, averaging a standard cost of $25,700. Fiberglass is next, with a standard cost of $31,400, and concrete/gunite is the most expensive, ranging from about $30,000 to $50,000.

Each option has their pros and cons that you will have to weigh to determine the value/cost benefits. Here’s a quick overview.

Vinyl

Pros

  • Can freely customize size, shape, and depth
  • Easy installation compared to fiberglass
  • Least expensive option
Cons

  • Vinyl liner needs to be replaced about every 10 years
  • Pool chemistry impacts the life of the liner and improper management can cause damage
  • The liner can become slippery if the pool chemistry isn’t right
  • Can stain and be damaged by sharp objects
  • Porous surface results in more algae and bacteria growth than fiberglass pools

Fiberglass

Pros

  • Prevents algae growth due to smooth surface
  • Low maintenance costs
  • Fast installation
  • Heats up the water quickly
Cons

  • Can’t customize to any shape
  • Limited in size and depth
  • Surface may be slippery
  • Can bulge or crack with improper installation
  • Won’t last as long as a concrete pool
  • May need a gel refinish after 10 years

Concrete

Pros

  • High durability; lasts the longest
  • Can freely customize the shape, size, and depth
  • Accommodating to special features
Cons

  • Requires resurfacing every 10-15 years
  • More chemicals may be needed because the porous surface allows algae growth
  • Rough surface can cause scratches and cuts
  • Expensive to maintain over time
  • Takes longer to install
  • More difficult installation process

To save the most upfront, opt for a vinyl pool liner. However, you may save more after 10 years by owning a fiberglass pool because of the inexpensive maintenance. Then, over the lifetime of the pool, the concrete may come out ahead if it outlasts the other two. You can decide if this is an area you want to save in short-term, long-term, or somewhere in-between.

Consider size and depth

According to Custom Outdoor Trends, a small pool ranges from 25 to 30-feet in length, a medium pool from 31 to 38 feet, and a large from 39 feet up. Opting for a small pool over a large one can save an estimated $10,000 in the pool price, according to the Custom Outdoor Trends calculator.

Depth is also a factor to consider, as a pool with a depth of six feet or less is estimated to be about $2,000 less expensive than a pool with a depth of more than six feet. Costs will vary by pool builder and location, but these estimates can give you a ballpark idea of what to expect.

Hold off on the special features

Next, if you want to cut down your costs for the initial pool build, hold off on the cascading waterfall, spa, heating elements, diving board, water slide, and other special features. Not that you have to forgo them altogether, but these are items which can be added on later as your budget permits. Think along the lines of yearly upgrades!

With this in mind, it is a good idea to add any plumbing you may need (for potential water features, slides, etc.) during construction. Additionally, if you want a diving board, ensure you’ll have sufficient depth. This will avoid having to break ground later on when you’re ready to make the upgrades. Aside from the prep work, you can save money by focusing on just getting the pool in first.

For your reference, Custom Outdoor Trends estimates an additional $9,000 to add a spa with heating elements, $2,000 for a diving board, $2,000 for a beach entry, and about $4,000 for an average-sized boulder waterfall.

Don’t get all the upgrades

In addition to special features, you will also have a number of upgrade options that can increase your costs. These can appear for the decking, tile on the waterline, plaster, coping, and deck jets. Custom Outdoor Trends estimates that standard white plaster will save an estimated $4,000 over pebble or quartz alternatives, while premium tiles add an extra $1,400, and upgrades to minimal amounts of decking can cost in the ballpark of $6,000.

While each individual upgrade may not sound like a big increase, they add up quickly, especially when it comes to decking.

Find the best deal on financing

Once you have optimized all of your costs on the pool, it will come time to choose how you will pay for it. Of course, financing comes at a cost, so it will be important to evaluate all of your options and choose the least expensive solution. Common pool financing approaches include using home equity, credit cards, dealer financing, and personal loans.

Of these options, personal loans stand out as being both convenient and affordable.

“If you own a home and need to make repairs or improvements, a personal loan can help get the work done quickly if you don’t have time to save up for the work. This is an appropriate use of a personal loan because the cost of the loan is at least partially offset by increasing the equity in your home,” says Katie Ross, Education and Development Manager of the American Consumer Credit Counseling Organization (ACCC).

Online lending companies like Lightstream, Prosper, and Avant, have made the process of getting a personal loan very easy. You can apply within a few minutes and have the money transferred to your account within days. No driving around town and no visiting your bank to plead your case.

With a number of lenders online and ready to offer you financing, the question becomes, which one can give you the best terms?

Researching every option can take several hours that you simply don’t have to spare, so let Supermoney’s prequalification tool do the hard work for you.

By answering a few simple questions and allowing a soft credit pull that doesn’t hurt your credit, you can get offers from a number of lenders competing for your business.

Then, if you’d like to learn more about the lenders you’re interested in, you can head over to our personal loans review page to read in-depth descriptions of each company along with real user reviews so you can find the best fit.

Save money on your swimming pool

With these tips, you can save money on your swimming pool. Sure, you may want to go ahead and spend the extra money to upgrade the tile on the water line or put in the water slide, but the main message here is to choose wisely. There are many factors adding to the cost of a pool, from the materials, to the size, to the financing costs, and they all add up.

To save without sacrificing what you want, it’s important to understand all of the options on the table and to pick wisely. Best of luck!

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