Having a pool in the backyard to enjoy each summer is something a lot of families consider to be an essential must-have. It is a great place for family fun to happen as well as physical activity. More benefits of a pool include increased home value, a place to host a summer pool party, saves you money; no need to travel as much when looking for a place to cool down during a heatwave.
A pool isn’t for everyone but for the ones who are searching for a house with a pool, it is good to know some of the most important things to be looking for. Below are 5 things homebuyers should look for when buying a house with a pool.
Checking to ensure safety pool devices are working properly should be on the top of the list. Water safety is important and everyone residing in the household should be educated on the matter.
Look for the pool fencing, there should be one and if there isn’t, the next owner of the home will be responsible for building one that fits the requirements; check with your city to see the required fencing rules. Pool fencing is important as it can help keep children from entering when there is no supervision and having an accident occur. If the fencing is already there when viewing the property check for the following:
- Check the gate functions
- Inspect latching device
- Examine for rust or gaps
- Check that bolts are in good working order
Other safety devices to look for include pool nets and pool covers.
2. Monthly Cost
Not exactly something a potential buyer can look for, but there are questions that can be asked such as the approximate cost of running the pool each season. There are added costs to monthly utility bills such as increased water and hydro bills.
Other costs of owning a pool may include a monthly maintenance fee to pay to whom you may be hiring to clean the pool and manage the chemical balance. People who care for pools can charge anywhere between $50 and $200 per hour. Potential buyers will also want to ask how much it costs to keep the pool heated if that is something of interest, as well as the water filtration system.
Asking the current owners if they have had to replace the pump or the heater recently is something to be considered as well.
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3. Condition of the Pool
Having to repair a pool can cost a pretty penny for a homeowner; checking the current condition before any purchases made is crucial. Check for cracks or crevices as this can lead to leakage and a breeding area for fungi and algae. Getting rid of algae is no easy task either, and can delay any enjoyment of the pool.
When looking over the pool, inspect the bottom to ensure it is free of stains, discolouration, or any rough areas. When looking at a saltwater pool, look for any damage that has been caused by exposure to salt. Railings in the pool can be affected along with anything surrounding the pool that has been a victim of splashing.
A pump is the most important part of the pool's system. Without a pump, a pool isn’t healthy enough to swim in. A pump helps clean the pool and can run features like a waterfall. When looking at the pump ensure it is bolted to the equipment pad and doesn’t have any leaks. It should be noted to check if the timer is working as well.
The filter should have no defects in the clamp that could make it fail. Also, check the gauge for proper function. The pool's filter is important as it collects all the dirt and debris that comes into contact with the water.
Not every pool will come with a heating system but if it does it is important to know what to look for as a potential new owner of this pool. Ensuring it is functioning properly, turn it on and look for the temperature to be increasing.
If anyone isn’t confident they will know exactly what to look for when looking at the pool's condition, it is acceptable to bring in an inspector before purchasing the home.
Purchasing a home doesn’t always happen in the summer so there is a chance you will look at the property while the pool is closed. It is hard to look at a pool during the off-season but there are still ways to gather important information. Here are some steps a person can take when looking at a home to buy that is coming with a pool:
- Ask for pictures of the pool while it is open
- Look at maintenance records
- If there is a company that opens and closes the pool, ask for the contact information to speak with them
- If there is a heater, is it gas or electric?
- Chlorine or saltwater?
This may not be as ideal as seeing the pool during the season but this can help to know whether it is worth buying or not. Looking at maintenance records and speaking with any companies who help maintain can help to know if it is a pool that requires regular repairs which can add up quickly. It is possible to include a clause that the current owner is liable for any repair cost once the pool is open the following season.
5. Is It Possible to Get Rid of the Pool?
A pool may not be for everyone, but you have found the perfect dream home, only downfall is, it comes with a pool. There are a number of reasons a homeowner may not want a pool that includes wanting more space in their yard for children to play or to host BBQs and family fun nights. A pool is also a bit of work that some people aren’t up for. Whatever the reason for not wanting a pool, it is important to look for the possibility of filling up space and the estimated cost to do so. Filling in a pool with just dirt can cost up to $16,000 for an inground pool. Homeowners will need to measure and find the approximate cost for grass and any other greenery that may be going in to replace the pool.
If a pool is unwanted because of the added cost of owning a pool it may be worth noting the added cost of filling it in. If it is because of maintenance, there are a number of companies to assist with this.
Whether someone is actively looking to purchase a home with a pool or has stumbled upon their dream home which happens to have a pool, it is important to know what to look for. Knowing this can save hundreds or even thousands of dollars in unwanted repair costs. Not knowing to look for cracks and crevices can lead to an habitant that algae love which can make for a huge annoyance and delay in opening your pool the following year. Knowing this vital information is crucial to having a successful experience with your new pool and that is what we all want; successful pool openings and a summer full of enjoyment!