Checkout Lane: Pools come in all sizes, prices
Summer has almost arrived, and that means swim season is upon us. But if you don’t have a pool in your backyard, it’s not too late to have one by season’s end, according to Laura Palermo, a salesclerk at Crystal Clear Pools in Quincy, which also has a store in Kingston.
Palermo said many customers are able to have a pool installed within weeks. Julie Wilson, development and marketing manager with Cherry Hill Pools in Hanover, said six weeks is the average installation time.
But before you begin searching for a pool builder, you might want to consider your backyard’s layout and your budget, Palermo said. Those are the two key factors when it comes to determining whether your property is appropriate for an above-ground pool or an in-ground one, she said.
“Ideally, everyone wants an in-ground pool – it adds dimension, whereas above ground takes away from the yard a little bit,” Palermo said.
If you have a big, open lot, chances are you’ll have no problem fitting an in-ground pool. But if there’s a septic system buried in your backyard, a below-ground pool may not be a possibility.
Budget is another factor that leads people away from in-ground pools, Palermo said. Above-ground pools generally cost $6,000 to $10,000, according to Palermo – less than half the cost of in-ground pools, which typically start at $20,000 and go up from there.
For an in-ground pool, both Palermo and Wilson recommend going for a one-piece fiberglass pool. Not only are fiberglass pools easier to maintain, they’re also better suited to the Massachusetts climate, Wilson said.
“Anyone who’s walked down the street know what happens to concrete in New England,” Wilson said.
Wilson said fiberglass pools flex as the ground shifts, allowing them to last far longer than the cement and plaster pools of old.
When it comes to pool shape and size, Wilson said buyers should consider the pool’s ultimate function. If you’re looking for a pool for leisure and social gatherings, make sure it has plenty of built-in benches and seats, Wilson said.
And while you may be buying the pool for use by your immediate family, remember they tend to draw a crowd.
“If you have two children, those kids are going to have four friends apiece,” Wilson said. “Take that into consideration.”
A.J. Bauer may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
POOL SAFETY TIPS
- Make sure an adult, preferably one who knows CPR, is supervising each time a child is in or near the pool.
- Employ “touch supervision” – where an adult is within arm’s length at all times – for any children younger than age 5.
- Keep life preservers, a shepherd’s hook or other rescue equipment nearby, along with a telephone, in case of emergency.
- Remove all pool toys after use to prevent children from being tempted to re-enter the pool.
- Secure the pool when done swimming – using either a hard pool cover, a locking fence or both – to prevent re-entry.
Information courtesy of the American Academy of Pediatrics.