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How to Shop for an Above Ground Swimming Pool

The first question most folks ask us is “what is a cost of a swimming pool”?  The price of purchasing an above ground pool can range from $500 to $45,000.

Unfortunately, many people run into a road block when they research online as to how much an on-ground or above ground swimming pool really is going to cost. This post answer the question of “How to shop for an above ground swimming pool”.  We’ll try to explain what to look for and what items to avoid.

Choosing the type of Pool:

There are two options when it comes to deciding on what type of pool you may want.  They are:
1. Above Ground Pools
2. In-Ground Pools

Although there are endless options the main things to know about the two main categories are:

1. Above Ground Pools are portable.  You move, you can take your pool.
2. In-Ground pools are a permanent fixed item.  You’ll need to consider this and how long you’ll be in your home before you determine what suits your needs.

Material for construction:

There are 3 main types of material that most pools are constructed out of including vinyl liner, gunite or concrete and fiberglass.  Each material has benefits and draw backs that need to be considered.  Within the above ground pool category the most common material is a vinyl liner system.  The split between in-ground pools for material is about 50-50 from fiberglass to concrete.


With any pool design you want to get a professional experienced pool planner to help you think through how you’ll be using the pool and all the surrounding area.  Proper planning ensures your family can safely enjoy this backyard space.  Additionally, you’ll want to make sure you take time to organize your pool budget so it has enough funds to ensure all local municipal codes are met.


For most people a great option to get a lot of pool for the money and still have the ability to relocate the pool an above ground pool is the way to go.  Within the above ground pool market you’ll find online hundreds of sizes, shapes, warranties and prices.  Cheap pools like you find in box stores or d-i-y websites typically have a low ball price shown just to get the consumer’s interest.  As with most anything, if you buy a low end product you’ll be disappointed and probably have to replace the item in a year or so.  With today’s new technology many of the above ground pools are so well built they last for a very long time.  These pools also have decks, fencing, pumps and filters all included in a package price.

The cheapo pools from the box stores run from $250-3,000, plus you need to hire someone to install it.  A high end pool such as the Kayak (a rectangular pool) will cost about $15,000 installed with many features.

Gunite Pools with a side spa, finished pebble bottom and a salt filtration system could price tag in the $50,000 – $100,000 area.

Tips of Success:

First, find a pool company who has been in business a long time.  Check their Better Business Bureau rating.  Ask them for references of people who have one of their pools.  Do not even consider buying the pool online to save a few bucks and then have problems with getting it installed, getting warranty work done, etc.  If you call a pool company and they don’t offer to send out a consultant to checkout your yard and take the time to help you plan, move on to another firm.

Pools are wonderful and fun.  They allow families to spend time together, to get exercise and to just relax and enjoy each others company.  Be sure that the pool you pick is right for your needs.

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