Small Pools for Small Yards

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There are a lot of good reasons to choose a smaller swimming pool, but the most compelling reason is simply that you don’t have the space for a larger one. When you don’t have much of a yard to work with, it obviously limits the size of the pool you can install. But that doesn’t mean it has to limit the coolness of your pool. With a little creativity (and some cash), small pools for small yards can be as beautiful and functional as their larger counterparts.

Many homeowners with smaller backyards balk at the idea of getting a pool because they either think it will take up the entire yard, or that such a tiny pool will look funny. However, there are a lot of creative small pool designs that make the maximum use of limited space.

A talented pool designer can work wonders. But before you contact a professional, it’s always best to have your own ideas to bring to the table. Here are three options to consider.

Small Pools for Small Yards1. Make one or more edges of the pool run right up to a fence or wall

The typical inground pool is accessible from all sides. That requires a pool deck that completely surrounds the pool and provides room enough for people to walk. One of the best ways to save space in a smaller yard is to install the pool right up against the house, a fence, or some other barrier. For most people, giving up an entry point on one or two sides of the pool is an easy sacrifice to make.

2. Use a freeform pool shape

Most pools are rectangular or oval, but provided it’s a gunite (concrete) pool, you can get it in whatever shape you like. In fact, these days even fiberglass pool inserts also come in a variety naturalistic shapes, though it’s less likely that you’ll find one that meets strict space requirements. A freeform design customized to the peculiarities of your yard can open up new possibilities for pool placement that might not be feasible for the standard shapes. As a bonus, it can also give your pool a unique appearance.

3. Incorporate natural design elements

For smaller pools, a natural “swimming hole” look often works like a charm. Using a freeform shape as mentioned above is one possibility. Another idea is to surround it with rocks, plants, or other landscaping elements to give it more of a “wild” appearance. For a really luxurious touch, you can add a waterfall at one of the inaccessible edges of the pool.

How Much Does All This Cost?

A lot of the features mentioned here aren’t cheap, but consider how much you’re saving by getting a smaller pool. All else being equal, a small pool is much cheaper to install and maintain than a large one. After all, there are fewer materials required, less labor involved, and much lower monthly maintenance costs.

To make a smaller pool every bit as nice as a larger one, consider “re-investing” some of the money you save into premium features. These extra touches not only compensate for the smaller size, but might actually make it seem like a virtue.