Seven Potentially Hidden Costs of Installing an Inground Fiberglass Pool
You’ve spent months choosing the perfect inground fiberglass pool, with just the right shape, size and color. You did your research. You got several estimates for your new inground swimming pool and you’ve weighed them carefully. You’ve thoroughly investigated your financing options. Now that you’ve covered all your bases, your dream of having a new backyard swimming pool is about to become a reality.
Before you commit the remainder of your budget to pool floats and beach-themed pool parties, run through our quick punchlist to ensure that there are no surprises down the line and consider building these potentially hidden costs into your budget now. These are costs that apply to most pool projects, and they may not be included in your pool builder’s estimate. Some items are standard for one pool builder but not included in another’s, so you need to make sure you’re comparing apples to apples.
- Site Preparation: Site preparation refers to anything that would obstruct setting the pool into the ground. For example, the removal and/or relocation of under and above-ground utility lines or cables such as gas, phone, sewer and septic would fall under site preparation, as would moving irrigation systems and downspouts. And once your pool builder starts to dig, any “surprises” underground, such as a layer of rock that no one expected to find, could add to your bottom line. If additional equipment needs to be rented, or the excavation ends up taking several days longer than expected, that expense may well be counted by your pool builder as additional site preparation, and they will pass that cost onto you. You should ask your pool builder to clarify what factors of your pool installation project could potentially cause site preparation issues.
- Access: Your new inground fiberglass pool will be delivered in one piece and your pool builder needs clear access to your yard for the pool and necessary construction equipment. Access issues could include trees, brush, or fencing that might need to be moved or removed prior to installation. Your pool builder might also need to build a “temporary driveway” with gravel or protection mats to gain needed access. These costs could also end up on your total bill, so be sure to ask each pool builder to include in the bid what accessibility issues might need to be addressed on your project.
- Permits: As with any other building project, permits must be obtained to install an inground swimming pool. Some builders take on that task for you and include it in the contract. Some don’t. So during the project estimate, be sure to ask if they’re taking care of procuring and paying for the permits or if that’s on you. If you’re responsible for obtaining the pool permit, call your local municipality for pool permit prices. There may also be other costs involved, depending on your local ordinances. For example, you may also be required to put up a temporary fence during construction or implement erosion control measures.
- Fencing: Fencing or other barriers-to-entry that might be required by law are not usually part of your pool contract. Start getting estimates now for your project fence costs. If you have an existing fence, you need to make sure that it meets state residential pool requirements. In some states, an automatic pool cover will meet the barrier-to-entry requirements. Ask your pool builder about the codes in your area so you can plan your fence and/or pool cover purchase.
- Restoration: Heavy construction equipment can cause sidewalks and driveways to crack. Unless otherwise stated in the pool contract, the repairs of your existing driveway and/or the removal of any temporary driveway installed for accessibility to the site will your responsibility. You’ll also want to think about new and existing landscaping after the project is complete. A “rough grade” is typically part of your pool contract but a “finish grade” is not, and a finish grade is what you need to seed or sod your lawn. You might also need to add top soil. Large landscaping and hardscaping designs can often cost as much as the pool, so it’s important to have a complete plan and estimated costs ahead of time. Remember, not everything has to be done at once. You can start enjoying your pool right away and add on to your landscaping over the years.
- Electrical: An electrician will have to run the wiring for the pool equipment and lights. Few pool builders include electrical in their quotes because they don’t typically have an electrician on their team. If you already know an electrician you trust, you might prefer him or her to do the work to the pool builder’s specs. Your current electrical system may or may not have enough power or space in the breaker box to meet the needs of the pool equipment, so you may need to add a sub-panel or upgrade your electrical system.
- Dirt Hauling: When you dig that big hole, you have to put all that dirt somewhere. If you don’t have a spot for it (or don’t know someone who wants it), then you’ll have to pay someone to haul it away. The cost of this will be determined by how many truckloads of dirt there are and how far away the dump site is. Your pool contract might specify that only a certain amount of dirt will be hauled away or it may say that dirt hauling is on you. Unless you have a plan for the dirt, be sure to read your contract closely and ask your pool builder how much dirt will result from the excavation as well as how much of it is your responsibility to remove.
Inground fiberglass swimming pools are a big investment, but they’re totally worth it. Once your pool installation is done, you’ll have a lifetime of enjoyment with your friends and family, and your pool can add to your home’s value. As with any building project, your pool building project may not always go according to plan. However, doing your research upfront and expecting the unexpected can help ensure that the pool building process is as stress-free as possible.
About Thursday Pools
Thursday Pools designs and manufactures the world’s most durable and elegantly crafted fiberglass pools. We are ISO 9001 certified, which means that fiberglass pool shells are made with the highest standards and from the best quality material available. We are also ISO 14001 certified, which means we are committed to environmental stewardship.
Our one-piece, inground fiberglass swimming pool manufacturing facility is based out of Fortville, Indiana. At Thursday Pools, we aspire to be the world’s most respected fiberglass pool manufacturer and to help our customers create a lifetime of memories with their family and friends. Our innovations, commitment to quality and beautiful designs set us apart. Thursday Pools is the creator of the world’s first beach entry (or zero entry) fiberglass pool. View our exclusive designs for the Grace Beach Entry design and the Sandal Beach Entry Design.
Get a free estimate on the fiberglass pool of your dreams today. With Thursday Pools, your weekend starts early!