Boost Your Backyard with a Swimming Pool

Tuesday, November 27, 2012 - 9:25am

If you're looking to add value to your home property, installing a backyard swimming pool is one sure way to increase your property investment. A new pool, particularly a well-designed in-ground beauty, can not only add a luxurious component to the surrounding area, but also brings healthy lifestyle benefits for you and all of your friends. Here are four tips to learn how a backyard swimming pool can boost property value and your enjoyment levels. 

Maintenance & Materials

Swimming pools have cleaning, maintenance and equipment costs to consider in your planning. Maintenance includes balancing the water's pH, alkalinity and calcium levels, sanitizing to control bacteria and germs, and deciding on a pump filtration (and possibly heating) system. A good tip to help with maintenance and energy costs is to invest in the swim pool covers, which traps leaves and keeps large debris out of the pool, while letting fresh rain pass through. If you live in a warm, dry climate, like parts of the Southwest, using a pool cover can also trap heat and reduce evaporation, which in total, will lower operating costs and make your life easier.

Decide on the Layout

Deciding on what size, shape and function your pool will have is the crucial first step in designing a backyard oasis. The size will depend on how much space you have and the amount of your imagination and budget. The layout depends heavily on the function of your pool. Do you plan to use it to swim laps, host parties or play with your kids? A sleek and modern rectangular shaped pool is usually more formal and often used to complement existing architecture, according to Josh Atkinson from Houzz. But a freeform-shaped pool is also alluring. The layout can be based on a whimsical idea (a heart-shaped pool) or to create landscaping and other outdoor elements like firepits and barbecue areas. Whatever shape of pool you decide on should fit the morale of your home.

Keep it Safe

Pools can be a great place to cool off, sunbathe, play with your family, exercise, host parties- the list goes on and on. But they can be dangerous, too- and not just for kids. According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 10 people die from unintentional drownings every day, but only two are children aged 14 or younger.

Always take the extra measures to make your pool safe. Invest in poolside lighting and nonslip coating for the deck or patio of your pool. Keep flotation and life-saving devices nearby, along with a first aid kit. Safety-proofing your pool can be part of your backyard remodel. Incorporate a nice metal or wood fence into your landscaping design so the barrier doesn't look like an afterthought.

Finding Balance

The pool should stand out as the focal point of your yard. Base the rest of your yard around the pool design- whether its with landscaping or hardscaping – but don't let other space go to waste. Have an area for rolling around in the grass with your dog, a fire pit for roasting hot dogs and a lounge location to sip cool drinks and catch a nap in the sun. Consider including an outdoor shower in your revamp, for friends and family to rinse off in before entering the house.

So if you're considering a backyard remodel because you want an endless vacation spot right outside or you're hoping to increase the value of your home, consider your shape, size and design preferences as well as your budget before you take the plunge. By following these four tips, you'll be swimming in your personal theme park before you know it.  

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