Building Your Own Swimming Pool: The Right Process

By June 22, 2021Pool Safety

Written by Troy Davenport and published on

A swimming pool can make a great addition to a big backyard, but installing one is far from a DIY project. In most cities, you won’t be allowed to build a pool yourself, as construction must be supervised by a licensed builder in order to be considered up to code. However, the installation process is similar, whether you’re putting in a fiberglass, vinyl, or concrete pool. Start by choosing a suitable location for your new pool, then deciding on your preferred shape and depth. You’ll then hire out a building crew, who will excavate the area, add the necessary plumbing and electrical wiring elements, and finally pour concrete or insert a water-retentive liner before filling the pool.

How To Build A Swimming Pool For Your Home: The Complete Guide

There are so many benefits to having a swimming pool in your backyard. Home pools are cool and refreshing and are a great place to relax. They’re great for parties, and they will help you bring your friends and families together during the summer months.

Today there are 10.4 million residential pools in the United States, and when you see other people enjoying theirs, you want one to enjoy, too. It’s no wonder that you want to build a swimming pool of your own so you can join this large-yet-elite club.

If you’re thinking about having a pool added to your yard or home, there are many things to know and learn before you begin the process. The pool installation process may seem overwhelming at first, but it doesn’t have to be.

Early Decisions To Make 

When you plan to build a swimming pool on your property, you have some early decisions to make before you can begin to move forward. First, you need to decide if you want your pool to be indoors or outdoors. If you choose an outdoor pool like most people, you will also need to determine if you want your outdoor pool to be above the ground or set into it.

Indoor Vs. Outdoor

Outdoor pools are ubiquitous in warmer parts of the United States and are common in cooler, northern states. These are the pools with which you are probably most familiar. Many people enjoy lounging in the sun next to the swimming pool, which is only possible if it is located outdoors.

However, indoor or enclosed pools are becoming more popular these days. Indoor pools can be used in any weather and can be enjoyed year-round. Further, indoor pool owners don’t have to worry about fishing leaves and bugs out of the pool every day. More and more people are taking the time to learn about indoor pools as an option for their home.

There a numerous other benefits to both types of pool, but in the end, the decision comes down to personal preference.

Above-Ground Vs. In-Ground

Another decision you need to make early on in the process is whether you want an in-ground pool or an above-ground pool. Both types have their own sets of advantages and disadvantages, and as with indoor vs. outdoor pools, much of the decision-making process has to do with individual preferences.

There are almost an equal number of residential above-ground and in-ground pools in our country today.

Above-ground pools are temporary, portable, and moveable. If you have one for a few years and decide your family has outgrown it, it’s easy to remove. They are easy to maintain, and they are far more inexpensive overall than in-ground styles. Above-ground pools are also easy to install and don’t take up as much space as the alternative.

In-ground pools, however, are more attractive to most people’s standards. They last far longer than their above-ground counterparts, and damage to them is rare. Pool owners can also incorporate things like slides, diving boards, waterfalls, and hot tubs into an in-ground pool design if they so desire.

Build A Swimming Pool

Once you’ve decided which type of swimming pool you want, you can begin to move forward with the actual planning and building process.

Choose A Contractor Or Designer

Your next step in learning how to build a swimming pool is to choose a supplier and a pool designer. Pool designers can help you create a plan for your swimming pool and advise what is best. They usually work with a team of other professionals, such as engineers and installers. If you are building a small swimming pool, a general contractor may be better.

When you have decided on the type of pool you want, such as an above-ground swimming pool, you should discuss how you want everything to be put together with your pool designer. You will need to know the area’s measurements where you want the pool, including any stairs or other sites that may need to be built. Your pool designer will need to consider any underground piping and utility location such as septic and electricity. They will also need to know if you want an above ground pool, a below ground pool, or a combination of the two. The type of swimming pool you choose will depend on how much space you have available, how big you want your swimming pool to be, and how much money you want to spend. It’s also essential to consider you’re going to maintain your pool.


Before you do anything else, you need to determine whether your municipality requires permits for pool construction. Many do, and it can take a while to obtain them. You can’t start building until you have secured the permits, so you should apply for building permits as early as possible.

Choose A Site

You also need to choose a site for the pool on your property. You may find out that your pool will not work in the first location you select due to uneven ground in the case of an above-ground pool or underground utility pipes and wires in an in-ground one.

Also, you should take into consideration the overall flow of your yard. If you might want to add a deck or a patio later on, these are essential factors to keep in mind.

You’ll also want to build your swimming pool in a sunny spot and away from trees. If you are planning your pool in the winter months, don’t forget to think about how the trees fill out in the spring and summer months.

Pool Design

When you choose a pre-packaged above-ground pool, size is the main thing you will have to contemplate and think about where you want to put the filter and ladder.

In-ground pools have many more options to consider when it comes to pool design. You will need to consider the shape you want, the type of construction, the underground filter location, the sidewalk around the pool’s edge, and so on. If you’re going to add water features or landscaping, you’ll need to plan that out, too.

Above-Ground Pool Installation

Above-ground pool installation is relatively simple, and many people even install their above-ground pools themselves. You will need to clear the ground and make sure it is flat and free of rocks that could puncture the liner. Beyond that, though, whether you hire someone or do it yourself, the rest of the installation is merely following the instructions that came in the box.

In-Ground Pool Installation

There are many more steps to installing an in-ground pool, and the process is far more complicated. You will need to hire a professional to excavate the hole in which the pool will be built. Steel supports will help to keep the sides in place in the future. The filter, plumbing fixtures, and electrical connectors will need to be buried underground.

Then, the concrete floor and walls will need to be poured. The contractors you hire will use a cement mixer and will grade and smooth the concrete while it’s still wet to create the final shape of your in-ground pool.

In the case of fiberglass pools, the contractors will bring the one-piece fiberglass shape on a truck and will set it into the ground for you.

Happy Swimming

Once construction is complete, you can fill your pool with water. You will need to regularly treat the water with the necessary chemicals to keep it clean and clear and free of algae and bacteria, but otherwise, you are ready to go.

Dive in and enjoy a swim, and why not invite over some jealous neighbors while you’re at it? When you build a swimming pool on your property, your whole life will change. Have fun!

If you enjoyed this article and want to read more like it, check out our site’s Home Design section.

Final Word

If you want to know how to build a swimming pool, you first need to decide on the pool’s shape and size. You also have to take into account other factors, such as the location. The location is crucial because it affects the building and overhead costs such as heating and drainage and taxes. Once you have decided on these, you should start looking for a supplier of swimming pools.

These tips, as enumerated above, can guide you throughout this entire process. You’ll find that building a swimming pool wouldn’t have to feel so difficult and stressful at all. After all this preparation and approach, you can then proceed to enjoy fun days at home with your entire family.

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Before Hiring Pool Service, Know What You’re Getting
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