Should I Buy a House with a Pool? Top Pros and Cons
Should I buy a house with pool? Answers to this question depend on cost, the location where you are planning to live, lifestyle needs, and much more. The thought of having a nice cool place to beat the summer heat can seem great at first, but before you take the plunge and opt for a house with a swimming pool, there are many other factors to consider.
As with many other aspects of home ownership, including the house itself, maintenance is just one drawback of owning a house with a pool. This guide provides a closer look at the maintenance costs you can expect for houses with pools in every region around the country. Just make sure you're covered with an affordable home insurance policy.
With four distinct seasons throughout the year, the Northeast experiences cold, snowy winters as well as sweltering summers. Although there is certainly a demand for homes with pools during the few months out of the year when it's warm enough outside to comfortably enjoy a pool, there is a good chance that the pool will have to be closed for a large part of the year.
If you do choose to keep the pool open during colder weather, you can expect to pay more for heating, and to spend more time cleaning out the pool during the fall. To get a better idea of what owning a house with a pool will cost, here are some average prices in major cities throughout the region.
For Philadelphia, which is located in the Mid-Atlantic region, the average cost is nearly $450, with most home owners spending anywhere from $387 to $511 on pool maintenance during the year. The cost of heating, cleaning, chemical testing and repairs can influence the final amount. In Boston, the average price of maintaining a pool is $282, with most home owners spending between $245 and $319.
Coldwell Banker Burnett realtor Sonja Dalbey explains that, "In the North, where you only use it seasonally, there is not much demand for swimming pools." She says that pools are costly and can even be a deterrent for some people. Dalbey cautions, "If you are considering putting in a swimming pool in the North, you will not get the money back when it is time to sell."
However, she adds, it can be a worthwhile investment on a personal level. For those who really want a pool, she said, "Just don't expect to recoup your money, and remember that some buyers will not want a swimming pool. Some people buy the home, and have the pool filled in with dirt for a larger yard."
Houses with pools are much more desirable in southern states, where temperatures are warmer throughout the year. This type of house, Dalbey notes, "…is much more popular in the southern states, where they can use it most of the year. It is costly to put in a pool, and if you live in the South it may be worth it."
Even in southern states, the cost of maintaining a pool can be quite high. For example, residents in Miami typically spend $461 a year on pool maintenance, with a range from $362 to $560. The price is lower for residents around Chattanooga, who pay around $300 for pool maintenance each year.
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Although the Midwest gets hot in the summer, it can be quite brutal in the winter. Such a climate does not generally create a high demand for pools. Instead of shouldering the cost of pool maintenance, some families may opt for inflatable outdoor pools, which get stored inside until the weather gets warmer.
In Topeka, residents spend just under $300 per year to maintain a pool. For residents in cities such as Minneapolis, where cold weather prevails for a good portion of the year, the cost of owning a pool averages out to $478 per year.
Te presence of large bodies of water, including lakes and rivers, not to mention the Pacific Ocean for those who are close enough, means that the demand for a house with a pool is generally not as high in western states as it is in southern states. This is reflected in the average cost of pool ownership for some areas in the region.
In Denver, for example, the average consumer spends $186 per year on pool maintenance. The cost jumps to an average of $345 for residents of Phoenix, who are more likely to use the pool consistently for relief from high temperatures. The price for Los Angeles residents for annual pool maintenance dips to just under $300.
Cost and Ownership
When it comes to buying a house with a pool, or getting one installed yourself, Dalbey encourages people to go ahead with their plans as long as they are enthusiastic about using the pool and can keep up with the necessary maintenance.
Whether you live in the North or the South, she suggests opting for a house with a pool if it's what you want, and if you plan to use it often enough to justify the added cost. A house with a pool is more valuable in southern states than northern ones, which you should consider as well, especially when it comes to resale.
Having a pool on your property can also affect the cost of your homeowners insurance. Before you jump at the opportunity to own a house with a pool, ask yourself, "Should I take on this extra cost?" Depending on the house and location, and other circumstances, you can find a good deal on insurance.
There are helpful independent agents who can assist you with finding a plan that will suit your needs. Remember that you don't have to pay the big prices in order to get great coverage.