How much does an inground pool actually cost?

27 June 2022 by National Bank
Image of an inground pool

Have these hot days got you dreaming of lazy afternoons lounging by an inground pool, a nice refreshing beverage at hand? How about organizing a family reunion or inviting your friends to a pool party (with a DJ perhaps)? Sounds amazing! You’ve read estimates for installing an inground pool* that range from $20,000 to $50,000, but with all the associated expenses – from installation to upkeep, not to mention heating – how much will a pool actually cost you? Here’s a guide to help you transform your backyard into an oasis that wouldn’t look out of place in Bali.

Step 1: Choose the most suitable inground pool for you    

Unfortunately, there’s no magic formula. The price of a pool depends on a number of factors. Before you buy, consider the following variables and your preferences (don’t forget about your budget) to determine the price of your inground pool.

The cost of your pool will vary based on:  

  • Style: Inground, semi inground, or natural
  • Surface: Steel, concrete, or fibreglass
  • Size and shape (round, oval, rectangular)

Step 2: Estimate how much the inground pool you want will cost

You should ask yourself some questions before buying a swimming pool. Here are a few numbers to help you determine the price of putting an inground pool in your backyard.

How much does a semi-inground pool cost?

  • Semi-inground pools start at around $10,000
  • A good compromise between an above-ground and inground pool
  • Requires more maintenance than an above-ground pool, especially if the skirting is made of wood
  • Doesn't increase the value of your house

How much does an inground pool cost?

  • Prices can vary between $20,000 and $50,000 (includes installation costs, but excludes landscaping costs)
  •   Most expensive option, but also the most appealing
  • Cost can vary depending on the surface you choose
  • ·       The only type of pool that adds to the resale value of your house

How much does a natural pool cost?

  • The cost varies between $100 and $150 per square foot for an average price of about $20,000
  • Eco-friendly option because it doesn’t use chlorine or chemical products
  • You must be comfortable swimming in a pool that has plants
  • Low maintenance costs

How much does installing an inground pool cost?

Are you planning on installing the pool yourself or calling on professionals? Be aware that the type of pool you choose, the layout of your property (excavation fees), and the distance between the pool and your house can mean additional installation costs that can add several thousand dollars to the bill.

Don’t forget to budget for the installation of a fence around your inground pool (from $15 to $400 per square foot depending on the material you choose). Fences are mandatory in most municipalities in Canada and everywhere in Quebec. You’ll also want poolside patio furniture and/or plants for landscaping. Finally, consider the basic costs for maintenance and cleaning equipment, a solar cover for the summer (between $50 and $250), and a cover for the winter (between $150 and $1,000).

Maintenance: Inground saltwater or chlorine pool?

An inground chlorine pool will cost about $120 per year to maintain, while a saltwater pool will cost about $50 per year. A saltwater pool costs more to install, however, because of the saltwater chlorinator you need to purchase (between $800 and $1,500). Contrary to popular belief, it won’t help you save in the long term because this device must be replaced every five years. The major advantage of a saltwater pool is that you don’t have to check its chlorine levels every day.

How much does a water heater cost?

If you want a heater, pool lights, a waterslide for the kids, or any other extras, expect additional installation and maintenance fees. A water heater can cost between $2,000 and $4,000 depending on the model (solar or electric) and the size of the pool.

Step 3: Estimate the annual expenses related to your inground pool

Here are the annual fees to budget for:

  • Home insurance will increase by $30 to $60 a month once your pool has been installed
  • Opening, maintenance, and closing costs can reach about $200 if you hire a professional
  • Electricity for the water heater can add as much as $1,000 to your hydro bill each year, depending on the size of your pool (and the weather!)
  • Equipment that needs to be replaced occasionally (filter, chlorine, thermometer)

Step 4: Explore ways to finance your inground pool

Once you’ve determined how much an inground pool will cost with all the added fees, it’s time to explore your financing options. Consider the state of your personal finances and the number of years you plan on living in your home.

Refinancing your mortgage for an inground pool

Have you built up some equity in your home? By refinancing your mortgage, you can leverage your equity to finance your inground pool. And because mortgage rates are usually lower than other financing options, you can save on interest.

For example, if your property is worth $300,000 and the balance of your mortgage loan is $210,000, you've accumulated $90,000 in equity. Refinancing your mortgage loan lets you borrow back up to 80% of your property's value. In our example, you could refinance up to $240,000, or 80% of the property's value. Since your mortgage balance is $210,000, you’d have $30,000 to use for your inground pool.

Talk to one of our advisors to see if this option works for you. If you’re ready to apply for refinancing, complete this quick application form.

Line of credit for an inground pool

A personal line of credit is a great option for your inground pool if you want flexibility regarding how you use and repay your available funds. In fact, you can access a pre-authorized amount at any time. What's more, the interest rate is often lower than that of a personal loan or credit card. In addition, you can reuse the money you repay. You have the freedom to use it based on your needs, whether via your debit card, online, or at an ABM.

Good to know: Each month, you only have to pay the interest on your outstanding balance, but you should plan to repay the principal borrowed as well, so you don’t pay too much interest while financing your inground pool.

Personal loan for an inground pool

A personal loan for your inground pool is another option that offers a lower interest rate than a credit card. Unlike a line of credit, however, you’ll have to make regular, scheduled payments. You’ll have a pre-determined period of time to repay the principal you borrow and the interest.

Financing from a retailer for an inground pool

Some retailers offer financing for inground pools, which allows you to spread out your payments. But is this the most advantageous option for you? It’s best to compare all the types of financing available and do some calculations before choosing a pool retailer for your financing.

In summary, the price of an inground pool depends on all sorts of factors. You understood right—it’s best to plan well for this significant purchase before diving in head first. Do your research and set a realistic budget for your project. Then, find the financing solution that best suits your financial situation. We're here to answer your questions.


* All prices indicated in this article are from June 2022 and are provided for information purposes only. The cost of swimming pools can change quickly. Ask for estimates from different retailers to learn the exact prices applicable to your purchase.

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