Owning A Swimming Pool: Is the Summer Fun Worth the Money?

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It’s a dream come true for many people to install their own swimming pool. There’s no better way to relax and have fun with the family than by taking a swim on a warm summer day. But if you’re considering buying a swimming pool, make sure you know what you’re getting into financially.

To help you decide if it’s worth it, here are the three main expenses you should expect as the proud owner of your own swimming pool:

The Upfront Cost

Those of you planning on installing a pool should know that it won’t cost you a few thousands. According to PK Data reports from the last few years, the average cost of installing an in-ground swimming pool can be anywhere from $15K to $39K. While not as nice, the cost of an above ground pool is usually much less. The average price is around $1,500 for lower quality pools and $4,500 for the better ones.

For in-ground pools, what materials you use will also play a role in your overall expenses. Pools made of solid concrete are the best and will last the longest, but they’re also the most expensive. You can instead go with a fiberglass or vinyl pool shell if you want to reduce costs. Of course, they’re less durable than concrete.

It’s worth mentioning that you’re out of luck if you expect to recover the costs when selling your home in the future since in-ground pools aren’t as value-enhancing as people think. So if your in-ground pool set you back $25K, it’s not guaranteed that you’ll be able to add that to your asking price down the road. It mostly depends on what market demands are in your area while you’re trying to sell.

Maintenance Expenses

Pools are outside and thus exposed to the elements, which means regular maintenance is a must throughout the year. Keeping your water safe for swimming means keeping the pH balance to the correct level by raising it with sodium hypochlorite and lowering it with granular acid.

You’ll also need to keep a fresh supply of chlorine on hand. It’s the best and most popular chemical used for keeping your pool free of bacteria and algae. Although liquids and powders exist, we recommend chlorine tablets since they dissolve over time and on their own.

According to ImproveNet, the average cost of swimming pool maintenance is around $250 a year. How much you end up paying depends on the size and quality of the pool, of course. You’ll also want to invest in a pool cover to keep leaves and other debris from entering your water and messing up your filtration system. Depending on the type and size, a pool cover can cost you as little as $50-$200 for a mesh pool net cover or as much as $1,000 for a solar warmth cover that heats your water.

Repair Costs

Like anything, your in-ground pool is prone to damage that needs to be repaired if you want your family to continue enjoying your pool. While building your pool with solid concrete will make it more resistant to damage, there are a number of things that can go wrong no matter what material you used.

For example, a common problem is a ripped liner. Pool liners are there to protect the floor and walls from various forms of damage, including mold. A ripped liner has to be replaced entirely, which can cost several hundreds of dollars for the replacement plus a few more for costs of labor.

Pool pumps also deteriorate over time and need to be replaced every few years. The higher the quality of the pump, the longer they last and cost. If you have a fiberglass pool then you may also need to pay for a resurface. This process on average costs around $500-$700 but will rid your surface of annoying chips, cracks, and gouges.


As you can see, your pool expenses don’t end after you’ve written the last check for the installation. Keep in mind that on top of maintenance and repair expenses you’ll also probably want to buy things like diving boards, floats, and other accessories to add to your pool experience. Like any toys, they don’t come free and degrade over time.

But if you can handle all these costs, the hours of fun and relaxation you’ll enjoy in your very own pool will be worth every penny.

Interested in more home renovation dos and don’ts? Find out about the most common mistakes to avoid when building your dream home in this article.

One comment on “Owning A Swimming Pool: Is the Summer Fun Worth the Money?”

  1. I didn’t know that a ripped liner is a common problem for pool owners although it makes sense that it’s often unpreventable with older ones. My pool liner has a big tear in it and I want to have it replaced as soon as possible. It’s something to remember because maintaining the pool properly from now on could really help prevent issues like this in the future to help make the pool a little more durable.

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