Backyard pools seem to be a staple of success in America. Everybody is talking about their dream home with a nice place for the kids to take a dip. Pools typically raise the value of homes that have them, and can tend to be status symbols primarily, with hardly any use outside of the summer months. There are many reasons, that everybody will rant and rave about, to have a pool. A more rare conversation, though, are the reasons not to add a pool to your home. That is the discussion I will be having with myself today.
The clear first topic for a website like ours, maintenance costs of owning a pool can be irritating. You have to pay someone to clean it, unless you want to do so yourself. You have to pay to keep it chlorinated, heated, and for the water used to fill it. This is not even to mention how much it costs to dig one. These are massive construction projects that can hit an insane number of roadblocks. Every issue and delay will cost you time and money. Be wary and hire a good contractor– your wallet will come out pretty banged up.
If you have kids, keeping a pool safe can be a pain. Pool covers are notorious for trapping kids, and having a gate or fence installed can be expensive and ugly. Even with all possible safety measures, slippery concrete will always pose a risk to your children. You have to decide how much you trust your kids, and make sure you educate them on safety around the pool. Just like anything else, you must put a fair amount of effort in to ensure your kids’ safety.
My primary issue with pools is their opportunity cost. What else could that space be doing? Are you in a backyard where you’re going to have to choose between backyard football games and a new pool? Depending on the desired size, you can be losing out on a killer deck area or a beautifully landscaped yard for your kids to run around in. Make sure you don’t have any other big plans for the backyard before you use all of the decent space on a pool.
Unless you live in very specific areas, your pool time will be affected by the weather. For most of the year, and in most of the country, it isn’t exactly the right temperature for a swim. This ties in with the space and money issues, and begs the question: Could your money and real estate be put to better use on something more year-round? This should be a serious consideration when deciding whether to add a pool to your home, as you could end up paying to clean and fill a pool you aren’t using most of the year.
The “Special” Factor
My best memories of the pool were walking to the local community pool with my friends. This may make me biased, but I don’t think the pool needs to be something that is around all of the time. Whenever you add something to your home, you inevitably get used to it. For this reason, I think pool days are better spent out with a buttload of people getting out to hang with their community and cool off. As much fun as having everything you could ever want right there in your home is, I think there is something to be said about keeping things special.