By Jeffrey Brookfield

If you’re thinking of installing a pool, there are several factors to take into consideration. What type of pool are you thinking about? The type of heating, pump and filtering systems to be used, along the kind of chemicals used to keep the water clean, are important. Other considerations include safety devices that can be installed to prevent accidents, and whether there will be landscaping surrounding the pool.

There are two types of pools: in-ground and above-ground. In-ground pools come in a wide variety of sizes and shapes and differ in the materials used for their structure and liners. Similarly, there are different options available for the walls of above-ground pools. The pool wall structure of in-ground pools may be made of poured concrete, gunite (a concrete mixture that is sprayed from a special gun over steel reinforcements), plastic, steel or fibreglass.



Above-ground pool walls are typically made out of vinyl-lined steel or plastic. Poured concrete pools were once very popular, but due to the labour-intensive installation requirements, gunite pools have become the concrete pool of choice.

The soil conditions in the area where the pool will be installed must be considered prior to excavation. Ideal soil conditions would be undisturbed loam (an equal mixture of sand, silt and clay). Expansive clay, sandy or wet soils all present challenges for the excavation and installation of a pool. A soils engineer can determine the type of soil on the property by analyzing core samples. If the soil is expansive clay or sand, or if wet soil conditions are present, special considerations will have to be considered during excavation and pool wall support installation.

Pool equipment, chemicals, landscaping and safety requirements are other important details to keep in mind when deciding to install a pool at your home.

If you are considering buying a home that already has a pool installed, have a professional take a look before taking possession.

Jeffrey Brookfield manages the Canadian operations for AmeriSpec of Canada. In his 35-year career as a consultant, in executive management roles and as an AmeriSpec business owner he is known for being an innovator and a strategist. Most recently, he conceptualized and led the development of HomeScore App – a first-in-class web-based tool that helps homebuyers score, rate, compare and share homes that they’ve been shown by their Realtor.

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