If you are considering building a swimming pool, you have probably heard the horror stories. Before you start wading through volumes of manuals, and have dozens of contractors scheduled to come and give you a free estimate for your swimming pool construction, read the following ten tips about hiring a contractor to build a swimming pool at your home. Heeding this simple advice could save you a great deal of aggravation, not to mention money, in the long run.
Ten Mistakes People Make When Hiring a Contractor To Build a Swimming Pool
- Shopping like you are buying a car.
Swimming pools are custom construction projects and are built by many individual trades and pool contractors with different standards. All pools are not built the same, unlike an automobile which is manufactured in a factory under controlled conditions. With a swimming pool much of what you do not see will impact the cost of pool ownership.
- Not asking enough questions.
Do not assume every builder is going to give you an education about constructing a pool or is capable of giving you one, for that matter. The more you know and understand about swimming pool construction the better buyer you will ultimately be. This helps you and your pool contractor. Do your homework. Your resources are endless, so use them!
- Paralysis by analysis.
This is when someone gets 10-15 or more estimates for swimming pool construction and then can't make a decision because they have become so confused. Do your due diligence and get three or four estimates from reputable swimming pool companies. Then make your decision and go with it.
- Not checking out the experience level, history, or background of a Contractor.
What makes them qualified to build swimming pools? Consider the saying, "If you think the cost of a Professional is expensive, wait until you hire an Amateur."
- Shopping based on price.
Usually if a deal seems too good to be true, it is! If you shop for price alone you are destined to be disappointed. Bottom line: you usually get what you pay for.
- Shopping over the phone for a pool.
It is impossible and a waste of time. Visit the swimming pool builder or have them come to your home to provide you with an estimate. Visiting a contractor's place of business will tell you a lot about the type of business it is.
- Assuming swimming pools cost less to build in the wintertime.
We have seen increases in steel prices, concrete shortages, gas increases, and insurance premium hikes. Pools don't get cheaper as time goes on; building a swimming pool will never be less expensive than it is today.
- Not reading contracts.
Make sure you understand what you are getting into. Make sure everything is in writing. It is very difficult to cancel a contract with many contractors after the obligatory 3-day rescission period. The contract should protect you AND the contractor.
- Focusing on the aesthetics and not the mechanicals of the pool building project.
Hydraulic design, flow rates, pipe size, pump and filter types, chemical management systems, and many other factors will make a difference in the ability of your swimming pool to stay clean and sanitized.
- Not thinking about safety.
Swimming pools can be a great place to recreate, exercise, and just enjoy the outdoors. They can also be dangerous. Make sure you know what your City requires for barriers and fencing. More importantly, make sure you protect the ones you care for, and protect the ones that cannot protect themselves.