Swimming Pool Blog

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Top Things to Know When Building a Pool

A new swimming pool can be a great addition to any home. It makes staycations a lot more fun. It gives you the chance to expand your exercise routine by adding swimming, amping up the aerobic benefits for you. 

Owning your own swimming pool lets you have fun family time at home any day, plus weekend outdoor gatherings with guests safely distanced. As you embark on your new project, keep in mind that there are several important things to know when building a pool, and we’ll cover them in this article. Being aware of them from the start will help you make the right decisions along the way while simplifying the entire process. 

As with any big project, doing your homework beforehand and working with a trusted professional will help the end result turn out the way you dreamed. A pool enables you to make the most of your yard and spend more time outdoors getting sunshine, plenty of exercise, and fresh air. Careful planning is key to ending up with a pool that looks great, blends well with the environment, and brings your household a whole new level of recreation and fun. 

Important Things to Know When Building a Pool on Your Property

One of the first things to think about is where your pool will be located. Ideally, you’ll want a zone dedicated to your pool area, complete with decking and lounge furniture and maybe unique features like a fountain and an outdoor fireplace. 

But if your yard is small, perhaps it only has room for a modest lap pool or a good-sized spa, and that’s okay. There are clever ways to design the perfect pool, whether your property is tiny or enormous. Let’s go over some of the main points to consider.

Pool Size and Location

The size and configuration of your property will influence how large your pool area can be. The yard’s slope can also have an effect. If part of your yard sits on a hillside, you can take advantage of this feature and add an infinity pool, for example. 

If you find the backyard limiting in size but you have ample space in the front or on the sides of your property, you can work with these larger spaces. An experienced pool builder can create ways to not only build a pool in your front yard, but also make it your private oasis through skillful use of deck covers, foliage, stonework, partitions, and much more for a space that’s both beautiful and secluded. 

Pool Type

With a pretty good idea of what pool size you can fit into your yard, you can start to explore pool types. These are just some of your options:

  • In-ground pool
  • Above ground pool
  • Infinity edge pool
  • Lap pool
  • Swim spa
  • Hot tub
  • Fiberglass pool
  • Concrete pool
  • Vinyl liner pool
  • Reflection pool
  • Natural pool
  • Architectural pond
  • Saltwater pool
  • And other options

What are you leaning toward? You can also mix and match. For example, you can add an in-ground pool plus an above-ground hot tub area. Or you can have a lap pool with a nearby reflection pool that’s perfect for meditating and unwinding at the end of a busy day. 

Related: Fiberglass vs. Concrete Pools: Which Is Best?

Shape & Design

A traditional rectangular pool might look beautiful on your property, or you may want a different shape in a custom design. A talented pool designer can help you come up with unique pool shapes and designs that add beautiful curvature and make the most of your property’s layout. 

When thinking of design, consider what will go around your pool. Will there be plants? A deck? A lounging or tanning area? Specialized outdoor living spaces? Look at the whole picture and let a professional pool designer create some possibilities for you to choose from. 

Pool Materials & Decking Style

When considering the top things to know when building a pool, don’t overlook the materials that will be used. You want to go with durable materials that will hold up well over time in your climate. Talk to a pool designer to determine which materials are right for you. 

In addition to the proper materials, the style of your pool decking is as important as the pool type, because what you choose will add to the whole aesthetic of your yard. Are you interested in recreating the style of your favorite resort? Do you want a tropical look or something reminiscent of a Mediterranean retreat? Options abound. 

Backyard Features

Another thing to consider is the addition of special features that will make your yard more interesting, attractive, and entertaining. Some ideas include:

  • Outdoor living spaces
  • Outdoor kitchens, grills, & pizza ovens
  • Fountains & other water features
  • Fireplaces & fire pits
  • Interactive & mood lighting
  • Pool lounge areas
  • A hydrotherapeutic heated spa
  • Attractive hardscapes, including walkways & bridges
  • Landscaping that integrates into the pool area

What to Look for When Searching For a Builder

Once you have a better idea of the size, location, type, style, and possible design of your pool, along with what features you’d like to add, it’s time to start searching for a reputable, skilled swimming pool builder. 

The right builder will take your concept, no matter how rough or sketchy it may be, and turn it into beautiful results you’ll be thrilled with. 

Background and Experience

How long has the company been building pools? Do they specialize in swimming pools and spas? It’s advantageous to work with someone with plenty of specific pool-building experience. A general contractor may not have enough experience with the unique challenges that pools present and may not be able to complete the job correctly. Working with a company that focuses on designing and building swimming pools and spas is the way to go. 

Skills & Knowledge

Pool construction requires specialized knowledge about materials and techniques. Working with a skilled, knowledgeable pool builder will help you avoid the pitfalls that are all too common with amateur builders, such as cracks, leaks, water damage, and parts that degrade quickly. You’ll want to work with a builder with the right skills to construct a beautiful, functional pool that will last.

Check Out Their Reviews

One way to determine if a builder is worth your time is by reading their reviews. People tend to be honest about their experience when leaving reviews for builders. 

Reading customer testimonials will give you a good idea of what each builder is good at and where any gaps or issues may exist. Reviews may also give you a look into how each pool builder adapts to any unexpected issues that arise, such as a shortage of materials, so you can evaluate their problem-solving skills. 

Related: What To Look For In Pool And Landscape Design

Aligning Your Budget & Goals With What’s Possible

At this stage, as you work with your builder, you’ll want to ask plenty of questions about things to know when building a pool. These are some of the areas to cover:

Process Length

How long will the pool building process take from start to finish? What needs to get done before the building process can begin? What factors might shift the schedule one way or the other? These are some of the questions you need to ask to get a good idea of how long the entire project will take. 

Types Of Pools Available

You may have a vision of your perfect pool, but is this type of pool doable in your part of the world? Will soil conditions allow it? Will it hold up well in your climate? Find out which types of pools will and will not work on your property and take stock of your builder’s recommendations. 

Will Costs Go Up?

When building a pool, one thing to know is whether costs might increase. You’ve budgeted for your pool project. How do you know if this will be enough?

As always, talk with your builder beforehand and insist on getting upfront answers. Costs may rise if the material prices suddenly increase and your builder can’t find a supplier willing to go down in price. Ask about alternate material options. Costs may also rise if you decide you want changes midway, so be sure to iron things out as much as possible beforehand.

Modern Features

More than ever, swimming pool areas can include a wide range of modern features that add elegance and a higher level of interest to the overall design. Your builder can tell you more about how these features can fit with your plan. Features to consider include:

  • Rock waterfalls
  • Decorative fountains
  • Deck jets
  • Fire features 
  • Color-changing LED lights
  • Cabanas
  • Outdoor living & dining areas
  • Hidden speakers
  • Custom decking
  • Creative seating options

Adding Value To Your Home

Adding an attractive, well-built pool zone with attractive outdoor features can bring more value to your home. You’ll get more use from your yard when it offers you inviting recreational and living spaces, and you’ll likely be able to sell your house for more money when it’s time to move. 

Ready to Learn What’s Possible?

The more thought you put into the planning phase of your new pool, and the more questions you bring up right from the start, the better your goals will align with results. 

California Pools has been designing and building beautiful swimming pools, spas, and deck areas for over 75 years. As a leading national pool builder, we’ve got the experience and skills to turn pool dreams into reality, from streamlined lap pools to custom, waterpark-like pool fun zones. To discover what’s possible for your backyard entertainment goals and start taking steps toward building the pool of your dreams, find a location near you.