While kids may remember the family with a backyard pool as the envy of the neighborhood, most adults see the backyard swimming pool through less rosy glasses. After all, homes with pools do go for a bit of a premium on the market, but the costs of upkeep can cost multiple thousands of dollars per year and very few homeowners get a strong ROI when they compare the cost of installation to the sale price they can achieve.
This has changed a bit in the COVID-19 era, and the HomeLight Q1 Survey of Excellent Real Estate Agents has revealed some of the insights as to why homes with this luxury feature have experienced a boost in the market lately. Let’s dive into the details and think through how you can make a planned or already-existing backyard pool work for your real estate goals.
Understanding the Pool Boom
COVID-19 closed down many community pools or made it much harder to gain admittance due to restrictions and social distancing. As a result, homes with a backyard inground pool became an opportunity to relax and exercise that was hard to get elsewhere, making home a bit more comfortable when most of us were spending a lot of time there. Even with some restrictions easing, many people are still interested in excellent at-home entertainment options so inground pools have commanded quite the premium: according to the survey, “Agents estimate that prior to COVID, a house with a pool fetched, on average, an estimated $16,137 more than a house without one. Now, a house with a pool would sell for an estimated $27,199 more on average.”
Consider the Pool Costs Versus the Benefits
If you haven’t yet decided to install a pool, you want to focus on getting a clear-eyed perspective on this addition to your home. If you and your family are likely to use the pool frequently and it will provide a valuable addition to your home, now might be a good time to make a plan to add this luxury benefit. That being said, even the current pool boom doesn’t mean you’ll automatically recoup your expenses when you go to sell – with many pool installations costing more than $40,000, even the premium in the market now doesn’t offer perfect ROI. You want to get some excellent years of use in before trying to make a pool boost your home’s value.
Already Have a Pool? Now’s the Time to Sell
If you’ve been enjoying your pool for years but have considered moving at any point, you are likely to do well in the 2021 summer market. People are still excited about having a pool in their own backyard, so this is your chance to take advantage of the boom as you move. To get a better idea of the up-to-the-minute situation with pools in your area, you might hire an independent appraiser to see just how much pools are adding in value in your area, but you can also work with strong real estate agents who will help you price confidently and get the most out of this popular luxury feature.