Pool builders say their top notch pools last for decades, but there are always that one catch. Sure, the structure of well-built swimming pool might hold up for decades, but the chance of you going decades without having to fix or remodel parts of your pool are slim to none. Pool renovation, sooner or later, every pool needs some work done, whether for practical reasons or purely cosmetic ones. Here are a few of the most common reasons to consider renovating:
- Pool materials (liner, decking, etc.) are worn down and need to be replaced
- Older systems (pump, filter, plumbing) need an overhaul to be brought up to current standards
- The design no longer meets the needs of the current owners, either because they bought the home with the pool already installed or their circumstances have changed
- The old pool has simply gotten boring and needs new features to liven things up
In most cases, it’s a combination of factors. One or two elements of the pool might legitimately need to be replaced, but other, less urgent upgrades get tacked on to cover more bases and make the pool more appealing. When renovating your pool, go big or go home, right?
Typical Renovation Jobs
There are lots of ways to approach pool renovation. Here’s a list of some of the more common things people have done:
- Deck resurfacing
- Coping replacement
- Liner replacement/interior resurfacing
- Addition of an automatic safety pool cover
- Addition of water features such as a waterfall, bubblers, scuppers, etc.
- Addition or removal of a diving board or water slide
- Installation of an attached spa
- Change of pool depth (for example, making it more shallow and better for lap swimming)
- Conversion to salt water system
- Addition of miscellaneous features such as tanning ledges or swim-up bars
How Much Does Pool Renovation Cost?
With all those options to choose from, it’s pretty obvious that the cost of renovation can vary tremendously. For minor changes, it can be affordable enough to put on a credit card. In another case, it can cost as much as a brand new pool – or even more.
That’s not surprising when you think about it. A dramatic change is very much like installing a new pool, but with the added expense of removing the old one.
A lot of the advice about installing a new pool also applies when planning a renovation. For example, If you’re choosing between three companies to complete your renovation and you liked the people you had chosen the first time around to build your pool now, wouldn’t you want to go with the people you know will finish the job and do good on it.
Tips on Saving Money
The first step toward keeping your costs from getting to high is limiting the amount spent on the project. This can be tough, especially if your builder is making the case for more upgrades. If you’re already going to be tearing up your pool, the argument goes, you should take advantage of the opportunity to make all the updates your pool needs. If your pool really needs other updates, this can actually be a pretty convincing argument – but it can also raise your costs.
Timing could also play a role in the cost of renovation. Pool companies are usually busier during the spring and summer months, so you might be able to get a better deal by planning on a fall or winter renovation when they’re searching for new business. On the other hand, it probably doesn’t pay to wait too long – the cost of materials is always rising, after all.
Of course, the ultimate way to save money is to do it yourself. Although not everyone is capable of remodeling their own pool, if there are minor jobs they are more easy fixes. Making the time and having the patience to complete the job is another factor. Keep in mind if you have to end up calling someone to fix the job you didn’t finish or made worse, will cost more.
The Costs of NOT Renovating Your Pool
Sticker shock is a common issue for pool owners facing a major renovation. A pool being over 10 years old may not be worth the renovation, it would cost more to add special features than when you first bought it. Prices in the pool industry are always rising, but with your pools conditions is it worth the full renovation. Is it better to pay more for the maintenance cost or the full renovation?
While it’s harder to put a price on it, safety is another thing to be looking at. If your pool was built to less stringent standards, or the safeguards have simply torn away over time, continuing an upgrade could be risky.
Swimming pools don’t just fall apart overnight. Thinking in the long term you want to know renovation could be part of owning a pool. There will be times you’ll need to fix some things here and there. Saving money and making plans now are a good choice not knowing when something could happen.