If you’re a homeowner, you know how gratifying home improvement projects can be! Yes, there’s the disruption and the dust, but it’s all a means to an end. Whether you are repurposing a loft into a home theater or building an addition off the family room to support your entrepreneurial pursuits, you are increasing the value of your investment. Never a bad thing!
The good thing about outdoor renovations is that they are a little easier on you and your family. Your home doesn’t feel quite as much as a construction zone. You can just close the door on the mess and wait for the crew to come back again the next day to keep forging ahead.
What to Know Before You Build Your Swimming Pool
You’ll want to collaborate with a pool contractor because they will advise you of the potential issues with your ideas as well as possible workarounds, but first, take the time to carefully consider what you want and why.
Do you have the arrival of guests on your calendar? Will the pool’s planned completion overlap their visit? Do you want the pool to be up and ready before their arrival? Then you will want a wide berth of time to ensure unforeseen delays do not impact their visit. Ideally it would be nice for everything to be done so you can all enjoy the new addition, but house guests and construction don’t mix. Don’t give yourself the added stress. Either put them, or the pool installation off.
Even though you may be financing, you want to be certain you feel completely comfortable with your monthly payment. Reputable providers will work with you to find the product that is the most realistic for your situation. You never want to have regrets about this sparkling addition to your home.
Do you think you will be moving in 3-5 years? It is hard to say of course when your job may relocate you or an out-of-state opportunity arises, but if you are not planning on staying in the home indefinitely perhaps your pool selection should reflect that decision. For example, natural swimming pools are uniquely amazing, but they may not appeal to everyone. If you plan on selling soon you may not wish to install something so “off the grid.” It could make your property less desirable to most of the buyer base. Better to install a more traditional pool or get the one you really want when you relocate.
From lap pools to infinity edge pools, the options today are endless. Consider who will be using your pool so for example, you may ensure that the shallow end is outfitted with steps for the safety of the youngest swimmers. Is a hot tub a must have? Do you plan on doing a lot of entertaining? How much space do you have to allocate so what pool shape works best? You will get dizzy Googling pool designs but take your time and gather a list of features that are the most important to you. Even if you come across an amenity that seems it may be too expensive, discuss that want with your pool contractor. There could be an alternative solution that will provide the same function but at a more reasonable cost.
Some people actually enjoy this sometimes-laborious process. It can be quite the Zen experience. If you are to be a new pool owner, you want to consider how this will be managed and what it will cost. So, do you have the time/interest to maintain your own pool, or do you need to research local providers to work on your behalf? You can of course search around, but your best bet is to ask your friends and neighbors who they use and if they’d recommend them. Just like preventative maintenance in your home, staying ahead of any issues with your pool will yield tremendous savings in repairs.
What to Know Before You Hire a Pool Contractor
Feeling confident about the professionals you hire is one of the biggest hurdles. You don’t just want a pool contractor to be licensed and insured and have a killer website. Your contact person/construction manager needs to be an effectual communicator. While you’ll certainly have a contract outlining the job scope and cost, positive interaction is going to alleviate a good deal of stress.
Your first impression will be of great value. Does the contractor seem more focused on your project or on getting your down payment? Do they exhibit a collaborative spirit? Are you being heard?
A couple of tips for dealing with pool contractors:
- Be clear on the budget and what you want. Using pictures or sketches along with bullets of detail will help to make your vision clear to the contractor and once sent, will serve as a record of what you requested.
- Ensure that the contractor itemizes every facet of the build in minute detail. If promised specific brands of pool components, make certain those are referenced by brand name in the contract.
- Before they break ground, determine the completion date and what potential issues (other than inclement weather) that could possibly cause a delay.
- Decide the best means of communicating: text, email, voicemail. Agreeing to use one platform consistently will allow for all correspondence to be consolidated for easy reference. Maintaining one email or text message thread will be much easier if you need to scroll back for a previous discussion about the pavers. Some contractors utilize client portals to upload images and allow messaging.
- Understand all the required permits and request proof that they were pulled.
- Agree that any scope changes or any requests are put in writing, so you have a record. Make sure you get a response to everything you request.
- Determine how many times per week you will receive a formal update on the progress. There may not always be a foreman on the job and asking the crew for a status is not always the best idea. You don’t want to get between them and their superiors. Stick with the same point person for everything.
- Based on the proposal, maintain your own spreadsheet or journal to track the agreed upon dates for milestones so you may follow the progress and know what should be done this week and accomplished the next.
- Get confirmation and proof of any warranties.
In an ideal world, you needn’t be concerned about protecting yourself, but your home is likely one of your biggest assets. Safeguarding your interests is never a waste of time.
When it comes to a pool installation, take your time, ask yourself what you really want, and then find the professional who will deliver on that dream.
Providing pool and home improvement loans since 1979, Lyon Financial loves backyard pools…we think everyone should own one! We also love the difference we can make for your family by providing something that puts years of memories within reach. Call 877-754-5966 for more information about creating your ideal backyard oasis.