Selecting the right pool builder isn’t always so cut and dry. That’s why we put together this helpful how to guide on choosing the right pool builder.

March 5, 2021 by Pool Cost
How to Choose the Right Pool Builder

There’s no doubt that you are eager to have the pool of your dream designed and built; however, where do you start with such a large project? More importantly, how do you begin your search for a pool contractor for your project?

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How to Choose the Right Pool Contractor

Here are some pointers on how to choose a Pool Builder:

Background check

If you’re considering hiring a pool builder, it’s time to take your investigation to the next level by investigating the company’s records. Your first port of call needs to be the Better Business Bureau (BBB). Here you’ll be able to see if there are any complaints filed against the contractor. You can also make a small payment to obtain a report from ContractorCheck, which includes an overall contractor rating and a wealth of information about the builder’s business operations.

Lastly, it’s important consider your state’s pool construction laws and make sure that the contractor is properly certified.

Check the References

It’s a good sign if a contractor is willing to offer you with a long list of references. The more satisfied customers a contractor can demonstrate, the less likely it is that they were cherry picked or staged. If there are lots of references, you will probably not look at all of them; however, you must select some at random to call (don’t just call the first three but select from different parts of the list).

If the list is short, that doesn’t necessarily rule out the contractor. But you might want to ask some probing questions to make sure that the references are reliable. Here are some examples of things you could ask: When did you hire the contractor? If the references are mainly older, this could indicate cherry picking.

What type of pool did the contractor put in? If you’re installing a fiberglass pool, you’ll be especially worried about what the reference should say if he has also installed a fiberglass pool. Was the pool project finished on time, and was payment for the job done demanded after the finishing the project? Were the builders on-site courteous and understanding of your needs? Were there any surprises?

Get Recommendations

Are you aware of anyone in your locality who owns an inground pool? If so, make further inquiries about their experience; most pool owners are eager to share their knowledge. They may be able to steer you in the direction of, or away from, a particular contractor.

If you live in a larger city, you may also be able to get recommendations from online forums and consumer websites. However, be very cautious of these because they are easily manipulated.

Follow your instincts

Initial inside thoughts are often incorrect; however, don’t place too much reliance on them. If something about a specific pool contractor doesn’t look right, that should be cause for extreme carefulness. Here are some red flags to watch out for:

  • Providing an unrealistically low estimate
  • Pressuring you to make a quick decision
  • Pressuring you to obtain financing from the pool company or a related company.
  • Demanding payment in cash
  • Demanding large sums up front
  • A general lack of professionalism in appearance and behavior

Before hiring a pool contractor, pay a visit to the builder’s place of business. How a builder runs its office and conducts routine daily business is often indicative of how they operate on the job. And what if the contractor doesn’t have a place of business? That’s yet another wake-up call.


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Pool Cost
Author: Pool Cost reports on the latest inground and above ground pool prices. We provide accurate and up-to-date pool pricing. If you're wondering how much a swimming pool costs, we have written extensively on the subject. Our 2021 swimming pool pricing guide has the most current data available.

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