Building an inground swimming pool is not for the faint of heart. Even planning one is too much for many homeowners, who shrink from the sheer number of options, considerations and caveats they have to juggle to get the job done. A DIY inground pool takes the challenge to a whole other level, as you have to navigate the project in much more detail. Doing it yourself also requires skills that most homeowners do not possess.
We can’t help you sort through all the details, as they’re particular to your situation. Nor can we help with the skills, which take years of practice. However, here are some tips that can make your life easier as you attempt the monumental task of building your own inground swimming pool.
1. Plan ahead
Duh, right? It’s just common sense that you need to give yourself plenty of time to plan out a major project like this. Still, in the case of an inground swimming pool, it’s worth reinforcing the point. Many of the design choices you make will have ramifications down the road – not only in terms of the work you have to put in, but also your long-term enjoyment of the pool. Depending on where you live, you might need to apply for construction permits way before you begin the actual work. Be sure to set aside some time months – if not a full year – ahead of when you want to start digging.
2. Keep it small
If you’re determined to have a larger pool, then by all means, go for it. Just understand that it’s going to exponentially increase the amount of work you have to do. If you’re undecided about pool size, you might want to go smaller. It saves work and leaves you with extra space in your backyard, which may come in handy for the next big home improvement project.
3. Consider fiberglass
Of the different types of inground pools, fiberglass is probably the easiest to install. That’s because fiberglass pool shells are built at the manufacturer, as opposed to vinyl and concrete lining, which have to be applied onsite (by you). A lot of people like the results, too, as evidenced by the growing popularity of fiberglass swimming pools.
4. Use an inground pool kit
If you don’t mind picking from a limited selection of sizes, shapes, and materials, then buying a pool kit can definitely make things easier. These kits include all the parts you need to build your pool, and most come with phone support to walk you through installation. You may not be able to build the exact pool you have pictured in your head, but many kits come with a variety of configuration options. You can even combine this tip with the previous one and get yourself a fiberglass pool kit.
5. Contract out what you can’t do
A willingness to take on big challenges is one key to success in life. So is knowing your limitations. If there are parts of the project you’re not confident doing, find a contractor who can do the work for you. You’ll still be saving tons of money over hiring a pool contractor and you’ll be safe in the knowledge that the work will be professional.
Building an inground swimming pool is no walk in the park even for seasoned pool contractors, so it’s a given that a DIY inground pool presents a hefty challenge for any homeowner. But with the cash you save and the loving care you put into it, doing it yourself can result in the best possible pool for the money. Just make sure you give this huge project a lot of thought before you begin investing your money and sweat.