There’s no denying the appeal of having a swimming pool in your backyard — in addition to providing a respite from the sweltering Austin summer heat, it makes your house the go-to hangout spot among friends and family. But when it comes to the value of your home, you may be wondering if having a pool hurts or helps it.
Here’s a cool and refreshing thought: statistics show that a pool in the Austin area adds approximately more than $50,000 to a typical home’s value.
There are some instances, however, when owning a pool can negatively impact the sale of your property. If you’re an Austin homeowner with a pool, consider the following:
Who’s the Buyer?
A pool may not be a welcoming sight to all buyers. Parents of small children who may be concerned about safety risks, those looking for a low-maintenance yard without the hassle and upkeep of maintaining a pool, and buyers on a tight budget without the extra cash needed to cover additional expenses may see a pool as a negative.
While some buyers may be put off by the ongoing costs of having a backyard pool (utilities, equipment, higher homeowner’s insurance, etc.), it may not concern those who are in the market for a luxury home. Upper-end buyers expect to have a pool, so if you’re in an expensive neighborhood with multiple available properties, a pool will help you stay competitive with the rest of the market.
If you’re in a neighborhood where most of your neighbors have pools, your financial return might be higher. However, if very few neighbors have a pool and you also have access to a community pool, it might hurt your resale potential.
A pool’s quality matters. Potential buyers who are greeted with a pool that’s unkempt, has missing tiles or has corroded tile grout, or equipment that’s outdated may shy away from making an offer. A spa-like pool in pristine condition is more likely to entice buyers into taking the proverbial plunge and purchasing your home.
The area surrounding the pool is just as important as the pool itself. Your pool deck can be made of many different materials, including wood, concrete, pavers and stone. Whatever the material, you want to make sure it’s in good condition. Check for sagging, unevenness, gaps or other defects.
Recovering Your Investment
An average in-ground swimming pool construction can cost between $35,000 and $65,000. Depending on factors such as the size and shape of the pool, amenities and custom features like lighting, waterfalls and cabanas, the type of soil, and whether there is rock below the soil, which is common in the Austin area, the final total cost can skyrocket to $100,000 and even more. If you’re adding a pool for the sole sake of boosting your home’s value right before putting it on the market, you may only recoup a portion of your original investment.
An important note: in terms of home value, an in-ground pool is a better investment than one above ground. An in-ground pool is considered by buyers to be an integral part of the home, and is thought to be a desirable asset.
Do you have a home with a pool you’re ready to sell now? Please contact one of our experienced real estate agents who’ll help you make the most of this feature and attract buyers who’ll see it as a relaxing oasis and social hub instead of a hassle and liability.