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How to Choose a Swimming Pool Contractor: A Homeowner’s Guide

On average, installing an inground swimming pool in your home will cost you anywhere from $37,000 to $67,000.

On the financial front, it’s easy to see why swimming pools aren’t a common feature in most homes, with just about 8 percent of U.S. households having a pool.

However, pools offer substantial benefits that any homeowner would want to enjoy. There’s the increased home value, awesome curb views, and pools are a great hangout spot during the summer heat.

It’s no wonder you’ve made the decision to build your own pool. But to do that, you first need to hire a great swimming pool contractor. There are thousands of contractors, so you need to know how to zero in on the best contractor for your needs.

Here’s a guide.

Focus on Finding a Local Pool Contractor

National pool contractors are alluring. They have the resources to execute the build and deliver it on schedule, though they will typically cost more than local contractors. The fact that local contractors might be cheaper shouldn’t be the primary motivation to find a local company.

A local contractor will have a better understanding of your location’s swimming pool construction codes, for instance. They’ll be very familiar with how the local climate/weather conditions affect your pool and the project timeline. With this local expertise, a local company is in a better position to offer valuable advice and take you through the steps to building a pool in your area.

Licensure and Certification

Without question, any local contractor in your consideration should be properly licensed, insured, and certified.

A valid business license shows they’re permitted to offer the service in your local area. You don’t want to pay a contractor only for the local government officials to visit the site and discover that they aren’t licensed. You’ll likely lose your money.

An insured contractor protects you from liability suits. If a pool builder is hurt on the job site, the contractor should be responsible for their hospital bills and other expenses.

A professional pool building certification isn’t a must-have, but it’s a big plus for a contractor to be certified. It shows they have gone the extra mile to prove their competence and professionalism. Certified Builder Professional is the most common certification for these contractors.

Experience (Ask for References)

Building a swimming pool is a capital-intensive project, so you want a contractor who will do the job perfectly. In this line of work, perfection comes with experience.

You want a builder who has been in the dirt – literally. Someone who’s built at least a couple of pools with a similar design to yours.

The only way to verify a contractor’s experience is to ask for references. Some shady contractors can make up references, so it’s important to actually contact some of those references and hear their experiences with the contractor. If possible, you can ask to visit some of those references and see the pool in person.

Cost and Contract

There are different factors that will influence the cost of your pool, primarily its size and design. However, contractors can also charge a premium on their services, especially if they’ve got a stellar reputation and vast experience.

Don’t shy away from negotiating the cost, as well as the formula of payment. You want to stagger the payments based on the construction milestones. Avoid contractors who require you to make large upfront payments.

Find the Best Swimming Pool Contractor

It’s time to bring the benefits of a swimming pool into your property. Only a qualified, experienced swimming pool contractor will make this dream a reality. With this guide, you now know how to find the best contractor.

Explore our lifestyle section for more home improvement advice.

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