So, you’ve decided to pull the trigger on a new swimming pool. Or at least you’ve indulged in your new pool fantasy to the point of thinking about scheduling. The big question is, when is the right time to have a pool installed?
A pool salesman will tell you that now is the best time to buy, and back it up by arguing that prices will never be lower.
On this website, we like to say that the right time to buy a pool is when you’re ready. After all, there are lots of decisions to weigh – and unfortunately, mistakes can be costly.
But if you’re wondering what time of year is ideal for getting a new pool, the answer of many experts is fall. The idea is to hit up pool builders during the offseason, when you can potentially get better prices on materials and labor. It’s hard to argue with that logic, though each season does offer pluses and minuses when it comes to pool installation.
When the weather starts to heat up, so do swimming pool sales. Yep, spring is the time when many homeowners finally act on longstanding plans to install a pool, whether it’s inground or above ground. A spring installation means you will get full use out of your new pool throughout the summer. Unfortunately, with demand so high, it’s harder to find good deals at this time of year. Popular pool builders may already be seeing their schedules fill up with new projects, and pool suppliers have little incentive to lower prices on materials.
Early- to mid-summer is typically the worst time to install a new swimming pool. Prices are still high, good pool installers still have plenty of business, and you don’t even get the whole summer to enjoy your new backyard oasis. In fact, building a pool could put a damper on your summer fun. Dealing with contractors can be time-consuming, and once construction starts, your backyard could be out of commission right when you want to use it the most. That said, late summer can be an excellent time to start contacting pool builders, who may be eager to extend their busy season and keep their crews working.
The main downside of fall installation is obvious: You won’t get to use your new swimming pool until spring (unless, of course, you happen to live in a place that has warm year-round temperatures). In many other ways, a fall installation makes a lot of sense. Pool builders aren’t as busy, and may feel pressure to keep their bids as low as possible. You can take advantage of closeout sales on materials and equipment. And, pricing aside, it gives you the rest of fall and the following spring to work on your landscaping before you open the pool.
If you’re looking to maximize your negotiating leverage with pool builders, winter might be the time to strike. However, there are a few factors that could foil your plans. One, the climate in many places can make winter pool installation difficult or impossible. Two, some builders go into hibernation at this time of year, shutting down operations until demand picks up in spring. And three, the first of the year is when price changes often take effect for all sorts of materials, and prices rarely go down.
Is Timing Really Everything?
As you can see, there are real seasonal differences when it comes to installing a pool. If you’re taking your time in planning your new pool (and you should), then there’s no reason to rush through installation. You can choose the time of year that fits your schedule and offers the best savings.
But don’t forget about those other answers to the question of when to buy a pool. It’s true, as pool salesmen like to point out, that prices invariably go up over time despite seasonal fluctuations. And it’s also true, as we like to point out on this site, that your own thought process and readiness to get a pool should be key factors.
In the end, it’s better to pay a little more for a pool you really want, than get a “great deal” on one that turns out to be disappointing – regardless of what the calendar says.