There’s no doubt about it: Aussies love their swimming pools. In fact, Australia is home to 1.2 million household swimming pools – the world’s highest per capita rate of pool ownership.
But while a swimming pool may be the perfect spot to kick back with a drink on a hot summer’s day or take a dip after a family barbecue, but is it really a good investment?
If you’re considering selling a home with a swimming pool, return on investment is likely to be a key consideration. After all, upkeep and maintenance of a pool isn’t cheap, so you want to be sure that you’ll be getting some of those costs back when you sell.
So, is it worth it? Let’s take a look.
When does a pool add value to a home?
There’s no guarantee that having a pool will boost your home’s value, but certain factors can make a difference:
Your proximity to the beach
Ironically, one of the best reasons to have a pool from a financial perspective is if you live near the beach. Waterside living is a big drawcard for many buyers, and those who are attracted to the beachside lifestyle are likely to be willing to pay more for a home with a pool as well.
Your local climate
Likewise, living in a warm area works to your advantage. Pool ownership is highest in hotter climates – in Perth, for example, 18% of households have a swimming pool, while in Hobart just 4% of households have a swimming pool. As you would expect, there’s more demand for swimming pools in areas where pool ownership is highest.
The age and design of the pool
The type of pool you have can also impact its value on your home. While an above-ground pool is the cheapest option starting at around $3000, it’s unlikely to add any value to your property. An in-ground concrete pool, while more expensive, is most likely to add value if it’s well-integrated into the design of the property.
The area you live in
If you live in an area with typical buyers who are most likely to want a pool – such as families with younger children – a swimming pool is an added incentive that could boost your property’s appeal and value.
When does a pool decrease the value of your home?
In some cases, having a pool can actually reduce the value of your home. Situations in which a pool could be a disadvantage include:
- Living in an area where the typical buyer isn’t looking for a pool
- Having a pool that takes up most of your valuable outdoor space
- Living in a cold climate
- Having an old pool that needs repairs
How much does it cost to have a pool?
How much does it really cost to own and use a swimming pool? Concrete pools cost between $35,000 to over $100,000 to install, with the average being around $50,000. Then there are the additional costs of fencing, paving and decking around the pool, which vary depending on the set-up.
When it comes to running costs, a typical backyard pool can account for up to 30% of a household’s yearly power bill and for some households, a pool can become the largest consumer of energy in a house. The annual cost for an average eight-metre by four-metre backyard pool is around $1400 every year.
So, should you install a swimming pool?
The answer to this question depends on you. Ultimately, having a swimming pool should be for you and your family’s enjoyment – because owning one you don’t use equals money down the drain. it’s also unlikely that you will recoup all of the costs of owning a pool when you sell.
Aside from that, having a pool may or not may not increase the value of your property depending on the factors above, but remember that by having one, you’re appealing to a smaller market of buyers.
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