It’s HOT, HOT, HOT right now. With temperatures in the triple digits, the idea of jumping into a pool sounds absolutely glorious. But, does having a pool make your home more desirable to buyers? If you install a pool, will you recoup your investment? Does being able to make a splash really result in extra cash?
In 2017, homes in the greater Austin area with a pool had a median sales price of just under $550K. In comparison, homes without a pool had a median sales price of just under $300K. Looking at these stats, it’s easy to come to the conclusion that homes with a pool sell for more money than those without. In the luxury market, this is especially true. 2017 home sales in the 78746 zip code, which covers the greater Westlake area, showed that homes with a pool sold for almost half a million more than those without a pool. When you look at more moderately priced neighborhoods, the economic value of a pool is less extreme. In the south Austin zip code of 78745, homes without a pool had a median sales price of $300K in 2017. Those properties that allow owners to cannonball at their leisure show a median sales price of $350K.
Slightly less than 10% of homes sold in 2017 had a pool, and it doesn’t seem like people have been adding pools to their homes either. This percentage has remained relatively constant over the past ten years. Maybe, this is because a basic pool will start at around 25K. Start adding decking, waterfalls, and a hot tub and that number can easily reach 60K.
In reality, deciding to install a pool is a complex decision. First of all, you need to consider how long you will stay in your home. In order to break even on a pool investment, you will likely need to live in your home for at least 10 years. However, you also want to consider the lifestyle implications. Is having a place to relax after a long day in 103 degree weather important to you? Are pool parties with all of your family and friends going to add value to your life. Will being able to go for a quick swim save your sanity?
Lastly, you want to consider the characteristics of your property. Is your home located in an affluent neighborhood where pools are considered the norm? If so, you will most likely recoup your investment more quickly. Is your lot large enough for a pool? Does the general topography lend way to a perfect place for a pool.
All in all, having a pool this time of year is awesome. But, deciding if your home should have a pool or if you should just crash the neighbors is a personal decision. Dip your toes in the water before you plunge.
If you’re just sick of the heat and ready for a home with a pool, take a look at these Austin area home with pools.
Erika Rae Albert
Sharing my Austin real estate updates, home owner tips, & more.