A swimming pool can be the perfect oasis to relax and leave behind the stresses of your day to day life, or the perfect entertainment centerpiece for your family and friends. Before you install a pool on your property, you want to be sure that you hire a qualified pool builder who’ll give you some true bang for your buck. To help you with this, we’ve put together a swimming pool building checklist of questions that you can run through as you talk to potential pool builders. The answers you get will help you gauge the kind of person and company you’re going to work with.
Where/who is the main point of contact?
The company you want to hire should have a place of business or a showroom. This is to ensure you’re working with a legitimate, established company that you will be able to hold accountable should any issue arise. When a pool builder has an office, it shows that the person is credible and responsible, and allows you to dig into their credentials – do they have a Better Business Bureau rating? Online reviews? Can you get a copy of their insurance documents? A credible pool builder will also help guide you in making important decisions like the size of your pool, making the process easier for you.
How many years of experience do you have?
A good pool builder should have adequate experience in the field. You don’t want to hire just anybody because you risk getting low-quality services. Therefore, it’s really important to ensure you inquire about how long they’ve been in business.
As a rule of thumb, avoid hiring someone who has been in business for less than three years. This is probably someone who doesn’t have substantial experience and may not have interacted with many customers. Instead, go for a pool builder who’s been in business for over ten years and has a long-documented history of work.
This, along with some research into their business, will help you avoid overly drawn out projects and incomplete or low-quality work. A pool builder who has been in business for that long is likely to finish the work within the agreed timelines while also offering consistent, high-quality work.
Can I have a list of customer references?
References are the best way to really get a feel for who your pool builder is. You’ll be getting first-hand information from those who’ve already interacted with the pool contractor on a professional level. You should be able to uncover any red flags while learning more about their pool construction process.
The pool builder should be willing to give you at least three to four names of previous customers they have worked with. Contact the references to inquire about the pool builder’s credibility, job habits, attitude, and working style.
Also, find out if the pool builder completed the project within the agreed timeline and if any issues popped up during the project. Ask the pool owners if they would be willing to work with this pool company again.
What makes you better than other pool builders?
Swimming pool builders have to deal with a lot of competition. To survive in the long run, the best pool builders need to have unique skills and expertise that sets them apart. Ask the pool builder what they think sets them apart from their competitors.
A reputable pool builder will be honest and transparent while giving you the answer. They have nothing to hide or sugar-coat because they already believe in themselves and know that they provide quality services.
What special features can I add to my pool?
Yes, a pool is fun by itself, but if you’re looking for a more unique experience, your pool builder should be able to help you with your vision when it comes to pool design, so it’s just as amazing when you’re not swimming. Do you want to add a swim up pool bar, pool games, a slide, LED lighting, or an automatic safety cover? There are so many unique ways to customize your pool, it’s worth talking about your options as you interview potential contractors to make sure you’re on the same page.
What pool manufacturers provide your accessories and products?
Often when you buy a pool, the accessories and products are what make or break the experience. As a manufacturer of some of the industry’s leading pool lifts, slides, railings and ladders, we know that quality accessories and components last longer and require less maintenance. Have your installer let you know which manufacturers they prefer and why so you can do your own homework.
Do you have insurance?
We mentioned this earlier, but it deserves to be highlighted. A credible pool builder should have insurance covering workers such as plumbers, contract laborers, or electricians working on your pool. Insurance will cover any injuries that might occur during the course of the project. If the pool builder doesn’t have coverage, you’re likely going to foot the bills such as lost wages and medical expenses if a worker gets injured while on your property.
Do you offer warranties? Will they be included in my contract?
Warranties are crucial when building a pool. You want to be sure that you’re protected from any unforeseen situations. Therefore, ask the pool builder if your contract will include a warranty. If there are multiple options for warranties, ask them to provide you the details for each. For example, if your pool has a vinyl liner, how is that covered compared to, say, mechanical components like a pump or heater?
The answer you get here will help you decide whether to hire the pool builder or not. If the pool builder informs you that you’ll have a warranty in the contract, make sure they provide it to you in advance so you have a chance to review the details before signing it. Some pool builders offer a lifetime structural warranty while others do not. So, be sure you get precise information about this.
What is your communication process with customers?
A professional pool builder should have clearly defined communication plans to keep in contact throughout the entire process. The pool builder should be able to organize, coordinate, and communicate effectively from pre-project to completion. Clear communication helps both you and the builder be on the same page and will make for a much smoother project for you as a soon-to-be pool owner.