Eleven years ago I took the plunge (pardon the pun) and put an in-ground pool in my back yard. I’ve always known that it was expensive to buy and is expensive to maintain, but I didn’t know how expensive the maintenance is until I added up the costs. Anyone considering an in-ground pool may be interested in the costs that await.
My pool costs may be higher than typical because I put in a large (20x43 feet) pool with a longer and deeper deep end than is typical. So, some costs may be lower for other pool owners.
My costs are laid out below. Most are actual figures including taxes. I estimated the costs for natural gas based on an average of the last couple of years. Hydro is a little more difficult. I based this cost on the power draw stamped on the pump. The figure I came up with seems consistent with the increased hydro cost we see in summer months. The repair cost is an average over the many years I’ve had the pool.
$27,862 – pool + installation + heater
$2009 – running a 70-foot natural gas line
$500 – extra cement not part of contract
$75 – pool enclosure permit
$215 – water
$396 – parts needed for winter closing
$31,057 – total in 1999
$38,846 – total adjusted for inflation in 2010 dollars
$320 – chemicals (chlorine, algaecide, alkalinity, muriatic acid, conditioner)
$341 – pool opening in spring
$369 – pool closing in fall
$300 – natural gas
$560 – hydro for pump
$300 – repairs, replacement parts
$2190 – total per year
As you can see, owning an in-ground pool is expensive. I don’t regret my decision because I have really enjoyed the pool over the years. However, some people may hesitate when they see the size of these numbers. The costs go down for smaller pools and you can save if you’re willing to do the opening and closing work yourself. However, costs will shoot back up if you close it for the winter improperly and you get freezing damage.
I know a few people who got a pool without a heater, but they ended up buying one later. Without a heater, you just won’t get much use of the pool in the Canadian climate.
If you want a pool, make sure your eyes are open to the costs before diving in.