So, you’re thinking about getting an above ground swimming pool. Maybe you’re wondering whether it’s worth the trouble and expense. Or perhaps you’re sold on getting a pool, but you’re not sure whether you should go above ground or inground.
Above ground pool salesmen are always eager to offer their opinions, which are usually aligned to whatever type of pool they happen to sell. But before you plunk down your money, you might want a less biased perspective.
To help with your decision, here’s a rundown of the pros and cons of above ground pools as we see them:
Above Ground Pools – Advantages
You already know that having an above ground swimming pool in your backyard would be tremendous fun, so we’ll skip to the more practical advantages:
1. Above ground pool prices are relatively affordable
Of course, by relatively, we mean compared to the cost of an inground pool. Above ground swimming pool prices can range from a few hundred to thousands of dollars, so it would be inaccurate to call them “cheap.” There’s also the cost of a fence, attached deck, salt water system, and any other extras you might want. It can add up, but the final bill is almost always much less than what you would pay for an inground swimming pool.
2. They’re relatively easy to install
There’s that word relatively again. It’s not an easy task to install a large above ground pool, which is why many people opt for professional installation. Still, in comparison to most inground pools (with the possible exception of prebuilt fiberglass pool shells), installation is far faster and cheaper.
3. You can take them down whenever you like
In the excitement of planning a new backyard pool, it’s hard to imagine a time when you might want to get rid of it. But it happens all the time. Kids get older, priorities change, and many times, people just decide that a pool is no longer worth the effort to maintain it. If you have an above ground pool, you can simply take it apart and dispose of it, unlike those poor souls who opted for an inground pool and now regret it.
4. You can resell them
If you do decide to take down your above ground swimming pool, you might be able to recoup some of your cost by reselling it. There’s a healthy market for them on eBay and other places.
Above Ground Pools – Disadvantages
Above ground swimming pools also come with a few disadvantages, some of which you probably suspected:
1. Above ground pools generally don’t look as nice as inground pools
Let’s be honest – when many people think of above ground pools, they think cheap and ugly. That’s an unfair judgement, as a quick peek at the top above ground pool designs will show. However, it’s probably true that the average inground pool is more visually appealing than the average above ground pool.
2. They don’t add value to your property
This is largely down to point number one, plus the fact that above ground swimming pools generally aren’t considered permanent additions to your property. The fact is, having an above ground pool on the premises could actually lower your property value and limit potential buyers when it comes time to sell your home. Of course, since it’s typically pretty easy to remove these pools, that’s hardly an insurmountable problem.
3. The options and features are limited
Above ground pools are prepackaged and, aside from your choice of pool steps and the like, not very customizable. If you have your heart set on a diving board, an unusual pool shape, or some other nonstandard feature, you may be out of luck. That said, above ground swimming pools come with far more options than they used to, so don’t give up hope too quickly.
4. They don’t last forever
A well-built inground pool can last for many decades. However, you won’t get that much use out of the typical above ground pool, which is made of cheaper materials and is more exposed to the elements. On the bright side, you can easily get rid of an old above ground pool when you decide it’s time to upgrade or move on. It’s not so easy with a broken down inground pool.
Bottom line? If you’re having trouble deciding between above ground and inground, the best advice is to choose a highly rated above ground pool. After all, it’s cheaper and you can upgrade to an inground pool later with minimal hassle.
If you’re trying to decide whether to get a pool at all, that’s much more of a personal choice. It requires you to weigh the cost of a backyard pool vs. the joy that it will bring you and your family. We hope this article has brought you a little closer to making the right decision.