Everyone has a budget they need to stick to and knowing how much a pool will cost is one of the first questions asked. You need to know the cost of your new pool in order to make decisions about what type of pool and what other landscaping features you can afford.
A lot of the final pool cost has to do with the material used and the installation process involved. One expense many don’t take into account is the ongoing cost of swimming pool maintenance. Keep maintenance costs in mind when deciding what pool will fit within your budget.
Whether you choose a fibreglass, concrete or vinyl liner pool, here are the price considerations to be aware of when determining your pool budget.
One. The upfront pool costs
DIY fibreglass swimming pools
It’s important to understand the initial costs of purchasing a pool and the wide range of designs that are available. There are cheaper, do-it-yourself options on the market, which can be obtained for as little as $15,000.
However, the work can be quite involved and — unless you have had some experience in installing pools — it may be challenging to complete the installation successfully. If you do go down this path, it’s essential to do the research into the cost of pool installation and what is required in the installation itself. The wise, and safer option is to hire a pool installer to do this work. While more expensive, hiring a quality contractor will take the pressure off yourself and will ensure a professional installation.
Fully installed fibreglass pools
The price of a professionally-installed fibreglass pool can vary from an entry point of $25,000 to $35,000, up to around $70,000. The price will depend on a number of factors. These include the design type of pool you have chosen, site conditions and the quality of the manufacturer’s pool technology.
Other factors that will need to be taken into consideration include:
- Whether the pool installers will have easy access to the backyard pool area. This includes access for a crane to lower the pool into the designated pool area.
- The size (small, medium, large) and shape of the swimming pool.
- How the pool will fit with additional pool area features such as lighting and water features.
- Accessories, add-ons and luxury features (beaches, waders, pool & spa combinations, infinity pools, smart pools).
- The condition of the soil where the pool is to be installed.
The upfront swimming pool costs will also be influenced by the type of pool you have considered. A fibreglass pool will cost less than a concrete pool for example. This is because the installation of a concrete pool will take more time and involve more hours from the pool installer and other tradespeople.
When checking pool quotes, there are a number of things to bear in mind. These include whether or not it is a traditional fibreglass pool, or a fibreglass ceramic pool.
Consider too the main benefits of each pool and the added cost for each. For example, check to see if the pool installation includes regular installation or added extras such as enhanced circulation and in-floor cleaning systems. All of which may add to the price of the pool.
What is the average cost of a vinyl liner pool?
An above ground vinyl liner pool is an excellent, cost-effective option for an outdoor pool. An in-ground vinyl liner pool is also worth considering. In-ground vinyl pools can be installed for the same price as a fibreglass pool. There are in-ground DIY pool kits available for around $10,000, making this a very budget-friendly option. However, a concrete floor will need to be laid to accommodate the pool, which can increase the cost of installation as you’ll need to hire concrete layers.
Ongoing maintenance will need to be factored into the purchase of a vinyl liner pool as these need more maintenance than fibreglass and concrete pools.
The cost of a concrete pool
While a concrete pool offers almost limitless design variability, restricted only by your budget and the space available, the cost can be quite high. A concrete pool may cost up to twice as much as a fibreglass pool and ongoing maintenance will be more expensive and more time-consuming. While many people choose concrete because of its perceived strength and durability, it is flexibility that is often the desired quality, particularly on uneven ground. Today, with the improvements in technology in the manufacture of fibreglass pools, these pools can be just as strong as concrete pools.
Two. The ongoing maintenance and pool care costs
Many people will compare the upfront prices of pool costs and installation. They will check and compare swimming pool prices and the cost of pool installation, however, they may not factor in the ongoing maintenance and care costs.
There are a number of factors to consider when you budget for the cost of a pool. These include:
- The costs and services of the pool pumps and filters.
- The cost of the chemicals and saltwater chlorinators you choose for the pool.
- Whether you use suction cleaners, robot cleaners or self-cleaning units.
- Any added extras such as water features and water heaters.
What you choose to use will have a big impact on the ongoing costs of maintaining the pool. You can talk to your pool installer about the price of the different equipment, chemicals, and other expenses involved in maintenance to give you a clearer idea of the long-term costs.
These are the factors that affect ongoing costs for maintenance and pool care based on the type of the pool shell:
Concrete pools require more ongoing maintenance than fibreglass as concrete is the more porous material, meaning these pools are more prone to algae and bacteria. This is particularly a problem with black algae, which can prove costly and time-consuming to remove. It is recommended that a concrete pool be acid washed every three to five years and resurfaced after ten to fifteen years.
Vinyl lined pool
Vinyl lined pools will also require more maintenance than fibreglass pools. While cheaper than concrete, the vinyl lining only has a life expectancy of around five to ten years. With the cost of an average-sized vinyl pool lining at around $4000, it is important to factor this into the ongoing pool care budget and overall pool cost.
In comparison, fibreglass pools are a low-cost and more efficient alternative. Advances in fibreglass technology mean you should never have to repaint, resurface or reline your pool, provided you stick to the manufacturer’s pool care instructions. The gelcoat surface is also smooth, making algae and bacteria less of a problem with the added health and cost benefits of using fewer chemicals. Fibreglass is a strong, resilient material, ideal for conditions where the soil conditions may not be stable.
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