Installing a swimming pool can add value to your home and provide entertainment for your family. Before investing in a pool, however, the BBB recommends careful research to ensure you make the best choice for your budget and needs.
ABOVEGROUND VERSUS IN-GROUND
There are two primary types of swimming pools: aboveground and in-ground. Aboveground pools usually cost less to install and are relatively simple to maintain. As well, in many communities, aboveground pools are not taxed as property improvements.
In-ground pools use vinyl liners reinforced below ground by a supporting framework, fiberglass, poured concrete, or a type of concrete called gunite. Because of the installation costs for excavation, supplies, and labor, in-ground pools are more expensive to build and are usually taxable as property improvements. However, in-ground pools may hold more appeal for potential homebuyers and increase the resale value of your home.
CHOOSING AN INSTALLATION CONTRACTOR Once you've determined the type of pool you'd like installed, begin researching contractors. By working with a reliable contractor, you will know the terms and conditions of all warranties, who is responsible in the event repairs or replacements are needed, who will do the work, and who will pay for it. Consider the following suggestions:
Before signing a contract, make sure all promises and representations made to you orally are included in writing, that the date the work will start and finish is listed, and that the total cost and the financing arrangements are included. Every item of expense for materials and labor, including optional equipment, should be stated and covered in the contract. The contract must also meet NYS regulations, which requires placement of deposits in an escrow account, and must have in writing a cancellation clause and complete name, address, and phone number of the contractor, as well as other items that protect the rights of the consumer. For a detailed list of regulations, contact the NYS Attorney General's office.
MAINTAINING YOUR POOL
Once your pool is built, you will need to maintain it. Maintenance includes monitoring the chemical levels, cleaning the water surface to protect the filter while the pool is in use, and properly opening and closing your pool for the season. If you choose to maintain your pool on your own, be certain you understand the correct procedures, and check with your contractor or local pool supply dealer for assistance when needed. If you hire a company to help maintain your pool, consider the following suggestions:
For more information, contact:
Better Business Bureau
New York State Consumer Protection Board
Northeast Spa and Pool Association
Association of Pool and Spa Professionals
2111 Eisenhower Avenue
Alexandria, VA 22314
Phone: (703) 838-0083
This report is general in nature and is not intended as a reliability report on any company, service or product.