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5 Common Mistakes First-Time Pool Buyers Make (And How To Avoid Them)

Woman laying in her infinity pool

There is nothing worse for a pool owner than starting on your project and having to immediately stop because something went wrong. To rub salt in the wound, not only do you have to stop, but now the whole pool has to be dug up and you have to start from scratch.

In the end, you wind up spending more money and more time building a pool that was supposed to be completed months ago. 

Whether it’s the wrong kind of pool or the wrong kind of contractor, many new pool buyers wind up getting sunk with their project because of mistakes that might have been made along the way. These mistakes could have easily been avoided had they known what they were and how to avoid them. 

If you are reading this article, you might have already made one of the mistakes that we’re about to mention. Or you’re in the early stages of building your backyard oasis, wanting to identify and stop any of these slipups before they cause you and your wallet permanent heartbreak. After all, we want you to enjoy the process of building the pool of your dreams. 

With J Designs Pool and Spa, we have worked with customers for 14 years and saved them thousands of dollars by educating them on the common mistakes that could have ruined their pool building. We want to give you that same knowledge so that you won’t wind up angry and disappointed in whatever pool project you choose to undertake. 

If you’ll pardon the metaphor, let's dive into the five most common mistakes first-time pool buyers make and take a look at how to avoid them!

 

Mistake #1: Not Knowing Your Budget

When the idea of putting a pool in your home first hits you, a lot of ideas can pop up in your mind for how you want it to look. Visions of waterfalls, hot tubs, diving boards, and attached cabanas start dancing around in your head. Understandably so! You want to build the best pool that you can and have all of your friends and neighbors green with envy. 

There is nothing wrong with wanting to get the most out of your swimming pool. It’s a long-term investment that you want to enjoy. However, the more extravagant your pool, the more extravagant the budget is to build it. 

So it’s best to know from the start how much the pool you want costs and how much you have in your budget to build it. 

If you want to know more about the specific costs that can go into building a pool, please check out How Much Could Your Dream Pool Cost? Factors and 2022 Prices where you can get a breakdown of the up-to-date prices for your project. 

Also, your contractor will most likely have a website where you can access the costs and figures for their services, so you can decide at the beginning if this is the right company for you to work with. 

 

Mistake #2: Not Doing Research On Your Contractor

You would never take your dog to a vet that mostly specializes in fish care. You would never put your trust in a neighborhood mechanic to fix the engine on your new Ferrari. You would use the services of someone who specializes in dog care and you would take your car to the Ferrari dealership. 

The same rule applies to the contractor you enlist to help you build your pool. 

You will need someone with the right amount of experience and credentials to start from the ground up and place your dream pool in your home. To find them, you need to do your research. 

This might take some time, and this is not a part of the process you want to rush. Not conducting your research and finding the wrong company to do the job could cause major delays and possible damages to your property. 

With a lot of pool contractors, they have a valid website with a page listing their credentials or “badges’, testimonials from previous clients, and a working contact number you can reach them. 

So for the sake of your pool…do your research. 

 

Mistake #3: Not Knowing Your Property’s Requirements

Not all backyards are alike, and believe it or not, the landscape of your property can be the difference between you swimming in a pool or swimming in a mudslide.

Before you start building your pool, it is important to know how your property can adequately support it. It is especially true in California that a lot of residents live on a hillside, even if the slopes are not that big. They still fall in that category of having a “hillside property”. 

Or you may live on top of a high water table zone, and when the excavation starts, there may be water there and not the kind you want to swim in! 

 

Mistake #4: Not Knowing What Materials To Use For Your Pool

Luckily, for this one, you can rely on your pool contractor to lead you through most of the way. They are the experts and they have the knowledge of what pool materials to use in the process of building. 

However, it is good to know beforehand the different pool types: vinyl, fiberglass, and concrete. 

That way you can best gauge how each one could fit into your budget, and also which ones best fit the ideal pool that you want to have. 

 

Mistake #5: Not Knowing Hidden Costs

With a lot of first-time pool buyers, they think that they pay for their pool to be installed and once that’s done, they’re off the hook. They’ve spent their allotted budget and they’re ready to swim. 

We hate to burst your bubble, but several hidden costs go into building and maintaining your pool that a lot of homeowners don’t consider

There are permit costs, landscaping (gotta get those pesky trees out of the way), material and equipment upgrades, and maintenance fees. Just to name a few. 

Building a pool can be challenging and involves a lot of moving parts that need to be accounted for when discussing budgeting.

Speak with your contractor beforehand, and they should give you an overall estimate of the costs. Also, be aware that some costs might change over the time it takes to build your pool. Be open with your pool builder and they will make sure that you stay ahead of the curve.  

 

Set Your Pool Up For Success

You’ve read the article and now you know the 5 common mistakes first-time pool buyers make. With this information, you know how to avoid them and build something to increase the enjoyment that you and your family feel from being at home. 

But mistakes can be made on the journey of completing your pool. You’re not professional pool builders, so a lot of these mistakes are easy to make and also very easy to resolve...as long as you have a plan and a trusted contractor. Being educated on just these few mistakes can save you a lot of time and thousands of dollars. 

For J Designs Pool and Spa we know it’s hard to keep up with knowledge of all there is about swimming pools. That’s ok. We don’t expect you to know everything there is. 

We just want to set your pool up for success by providing you with the same resources that we’ve given our customers for 20 years. That way you can have peace of mind and the confidence of starting your pool building. If you want to know more, contact us for a consultation

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