The construction of a swimming pool is realizing a wish held by most of us. Our plans for the summer include gathering with friends and family in the backyard to barbecue burgers and have a good time. Unfortunately, your fantasy can become a nightmare if you don’t hire the correct pool builder.
The proper contractor will work with you to design and construct a pool, spa, or outdoor kitchen that meets your specifications, remains within your price range, and provides years of pleasure. If you hire the wrong contractor, they will waste your time and money and take your goal away. With some research and effort, you can reduce the likelihood of being taken advantage of and stuck with the cost.
Determine your pool’s desired features before looking for a contractor. Several considerations, including aesthetic preference, geography, and finances, will influence the design and construction of your pool.
Get started by researching local pool construction trends. Do they typically consist of gunite, fiberglass, or something else? Think about your money, how you spend your time, and the environment to determine which is best for you. Asking other pool owners, “If you were starting over, what would you have done differently?” is a great place to start. Profit from the successes and failures of others. It would have been nice if I had installed additional lighting around the perimeter of my pool and in the garden. I can do it now, but it will be more expensive and time-consuming than I had done when I first started building.
The first step in looking at designs for a pool is deciding on the type of pool you want. You can research the companies that construct your ideal pool type online. You’ll soon see that there are many pool layout options. The more you look around, the more you determine what suits you best.
The next step is to familiarize yourself with standard pool apparatus. You don’t need to be an expert, but you should be familiar with the benefits and drawbacks of different types of gear. What kind of filter do you need, a cartridge filter or a DE (diatomaceous earth) filter? Is a simple feeder or even a saltwater chlorine generator in your future for pool chlorination? The items on the list continue, but you get the idea. Knowing the range of available machinery will help you pose pertinent questions to potential contractors.
The next step is to compile a list of possible construction companies. Get started by asking people you know who have recently installed pools for referrals. A recommendation from someone you know and trust is an excellent place to begin. As you drive around your neighborhood, watch for gunite trucks or other telltale signals that a pool installation is underway. Don’t be shy about knocking on doors to inquire about progress or the homeowner’s opinion of the builder.
Start narrowing down your list of builders once you have one. Verify your selections with the BBB (www.bbb.org). Investigate the company’s length of service. It would be best if you didn’t serve as a contractor’s test subject. Let other folks have such a privilege. Whoever you choose, ensure they have been around for a while and will be for a time. It’s common for builders to disappear without completing their work, leaving homeowners with gaping holes in their backyards.
A builder’s complaint history can also be viewed on the BBB’s website. It would be best if you didn’t automatically dismiss a firm only because they’ve received some negative feedback. Complaints are inevitable for any business owner, regardless of the type of building they specialize in. You may discover how many of those issues were remedied by contacting the BBB. A red flag would be unresolved customer complaints. Ask the builder what led to the protests if you’re considering hiring them despite the objections. Investigate the resolutions and try to obtain the clients’ contact details. A pool installation is similar to planning a wedding. The majority of the time, something goes wrong. The ability to learn from one’s mistakes separates competent builders from those who are less so.
Appointments should be scheduled once you have narrowed your choice of builders to between three and five. Set them a day or two apart to evaluate each one fairly. Each company will have benefits and drawbacks, and each will have its selling point. They may use simple graph paper to sketch your pool, while some may employ high-end computer tools. There’s no wrong way to do it. They will also have individual tastes when it comes to tools. Some people will swear by ionic filtration systems, while others insist that you only need a regular chlorine feeder. Still, others will opt for a saltwater chlorine generator. The results of your investigation will be helpful here. A convincing sales pitch won’t as easily sway you if you have a solid grasp of the subject. Remember that a contractor’s preference for a particular method or brand does not mean that they cannot or will not construct according to YOUR requirements. You are our valued client!
A skilled salesperson will work with you to find a solution that meets your requirements while staying within your financial means. They could also help you see opportunities you have previously overlooked. After each meeting, I think it would be a good idea to do web research to confirm any new facts and gather the perspectives of others.
The following remark is crucial. The first appointment should not be used to sign a contract. Do you want me to repeat that? The first appointment should not be used to sign a contract. Don’t make any decisions until you’ve talked to all the builders and weighed your options. While the third constructor might have put together a better product overall, you might feel more at ease with the first. In that scenario, schedule a follow-up meeting with your preferred builders to give them another go at competing with you on pricing and perks. Don’t be shy about asking for discounts or extras.
Getting it in writing is another lesson I think we’ve all learned by now. Ensure “XYZ” is included in your contract for free if the builder has promised it. Your salesperson may not still be employed by the firm next week. You require confirmation of the stated promises.
The builder will then establish a payment schedule. They’ll require a sizable down payment before breaking ground and more charges at critical junctures in the build. Set up the prices to be made AFTER each next building phase. If they ask for payment in full before tiling and coping, tell them you’ll send in that amount when the work is done. Ensure the final price (at least 10%) is not given until ALL WORK IS COMPLETE, and try to negotiate to provide them with as little as possible before work begins. All of this, once again, needs to be in your contract. It’s essential that they feel strongly compelled to maintain your satisfaction and finish the project on schedule.
Prepare thoroughly for your first appointment with a builder by reading up on the topic and asking as many questions as possible.
Freelance writer and proprietor of the go-to resource for pool and spa maintenance, Sean Berry.