Taking the plunge in ultimate backyard entertainment and adding your very own pool is an exciting thought; after all, the idea of creating lasting memories of lazy days filled with fun and laughter is an appealing concept! However, there a few important factors to consider before you get started. Let’s take a look at how to ensure your pool installation is as fuss free as possible.
The big why?
Aside from the fact that you’ve always wanted your own pool, it’s important to understand your reasons for including one in your home design. Will it be for cooling off and tranquil relaxation? Or maybe the reality is plain and simple: the kids will love the endless summer fun! Whatever the purpose, understanding the why will help decision making throughout the process. So, when you appreciate the why; factors like size, shape, design, etc start to come into focus.
Hold up… let’s talk money.
Great, you’ve determined your ‘why’ and it probably wasn’t that difficult. The next stage, however, will need more serious thought, as you can’t move forward until you’ve considered your budget. How much do you actually have to spend? Costs will vary depending on design, but on average you can expect to pay upward of $50,000 for an installed concrete or fibreglass pool. Above ground pools are a more affordable with total costs usually below $10,000.
Unfortunately, installation costs are just the beginning. Be conscious of additional expenses that could blow your budget. Legal compliance costs (like fencing) simply can’t be ignored, and the costs associated with general pool maintenance are ongoing. Pool blankets and a good quality robotic pool vacuum cleaner will save you time and money in the long run, but are an expensive outlay. Pool surrounds, landscaping and shade structures will create a fabulous look and help maintain water quality; but these costs can quickly add up. Then, once you add on optional extras like pool heating, lighting, outdoor furniture and décor to complete your pool area, your budget can start really taking a hit!
That’s why it’s so important to work with a team (like our friends at Landscapes WA) who can provide you with the right advice for your project and keep everything on track.
So you’ve been given the green light!
You’ve undertaken some research and established a realistic budget. You’ve made contact with pool installers and have an appreciation for all of the hidden extras. The next step is to think about the pool you want and the space you have.
The first thing is to consider the shape, size and depth of your ideal pool. The choices are seemingly endless; from rectangular lap pools, to small deep plunge pools and infinity pools that bring a true sense of luxury.
Things to consider include… do you have the space? Is the soil right and how much rock breaking and excavation will be required? Are there existing trees and tree roots in the area, and will these have an impact on the site? Whilst considering trees, it’s prudent to be mindful of trees on neighbouring properties and falling leaf matter.
Secondly, pool landscaping should be carefully considered. If you’d like a cabana or pool house, think about the functionality of placement. Fencing is an unavoidable expense; check council and legal requirements. Finally, be mindful of accessibility to the backyard. You’ll need to consider how builders will remove dirt, bring in materials and install the pool. If you need a crane for installation, you’ll need to consider costs in doing so.
Create the ultimate space...
When the hard work is done and the pool’s installed it’s time for the finishing touches to bring your own sense of style into the design.
You can begin by securing the pool surrounds with brick paving by using contemporary large format pavers from Midland Brick’s Colonnade, Rockpave, Boulevard or Ashlar ranges, and by including bullnose edging to create a rounded, safer pool edge. Don’t forget to protect your pavers and make a slip-proof surround with Midland Brick’s non-slip sealer.
For best performance, seal both sides of the bullnose paving (prior to installation) and seal all pavers within 2m of the pool.
Now you can get busy with landscaping by introducing greenery to the pool space. Think about building raised garden beds using Gardenwall, Heathstone or Landscaping blocks. Alternatively, use Cultured Stone as a façade for the ultimate in landscaping statement.
Pool pump houses need not be an ugly utility. Building stylish walls with a Cultured Stone façade can create a feature rather than an eyesore.
Fencing is a critical element to any pool design. Strict regulations dictate height and installation requirements. Consider glass, aluminium or steel fencing which is available in many designs.
Pool lighting is the ultimate feature in creating pool ambiance. Surround pool spaces with tiki torches, fairy lights and vintage bulbs, as well as lining paved and deck areas with hard wired lighting options. Waterproof lighting options also exist, creating the ultimate statement in pool features and design… but make sure you discuss any electrical requirements with a licensed, qualified electrician. Your safety is paramount, and it is never worth trying to DIY anything to do with electricity.
And finally, satisfy the senses with the sound of trickling water with the inclusion of a water feature. Endless options exist for fountains running into the pool. Alternatively create stand-alone features within the pool space using Cultured Stone.
So there you have it! While installing a pool is no mean feat, it can certainly be a worthwhile one. Happy swimming!
Disclaimer: All advice provided is general in nature and it is recommended that you consult with a landscaping or pool professional before commencing your project. All prices are estimates. Prices will vary on individual pool size, shape, depth and installation variances.