Why did you buy the house with the swimming pool and then remove it?
This is an excellent question. I did not thoroughly check out the swimming pool before buying the house partly because of the season, and partly because the hot real estate market didn't allow for too many delays or a house would be sold. Clearly this was a mistake as it turned out the pool needed extensive repairs and we had not even placed money in escrow or made other arrangements to protect ourselves from financial loss. In essence, we learned the hard way. It would have proved far too expensive for us to properly repair the pool, and we really did not want it all that bad in the first place so we investigated our options and decided removal was the best choice at the time.
Why did you put up this website
Because I think it is interesting. I had originally taken a large number of pictures of the men working on the swimming pool because my lovely wife was out of town attending a convention and she was curious about the progress of the work. I uploaded the pictures so she could see from her hotel room how things were going. While researching the topic I happened to post a message on a forum website and immediately began to notice traffic on the pages where I had put the pictures. As time went by I cleaned it up a bit and added some more content that I thought would interest people who were considering removing their swimming pools. It has been fun receiving email/guestbook comments from people all over the world who have looked at my website. I learned a lot about how to organize a website as well.
Were your children sad to see the pool go?
No, because we had never even used it for one season so they were not used to having it. They enjoy going to the community pool and spending time with their friends.
Were you sad to see the pool go?
Absolutely not. I can't even swim, and we are really not pool people.
How much did it cost to remove the swimming pool?
The whole project cost around $3700 and we were able to recoup $500 for the swimming pool filter and pumping equipment on Ebay.
How much will it cost to remove my swimming pool?
I really do not know. I hope the information presented here will help give you a better idea of what is involved thereby giving you a basis for which a more accurate cost estimate can be established.
Do you know a good contractor where I live who can remove my pool?
This is probably the most asked questions of all and unfortunatly I do not know of any other contractors other than the one I used, and he only works in our local area. You may want to try contacting a local outfit that digs basements or lays drainage culverts. These people understand the significance of altering the existing drainage patterns of a property and also would have equipment heavy enough to complete the job properly if you can convince them to take the job. You could show them some pictures from my website to help give them an idea of how one job was successfully completed.
Did you need a permit?
We did not, however I understand that in many municipalities you would need a permit and submit to inspections if you were to perform this type of work.
How did removing the swimming pool effect the value of your property?
If it had been a really nice, fully functioning swimming pool, it may have added a small amount to the value of the property, but certainly not anywhere close to what it would cost to install such a pool. Considering the overall poor condition of the pool that was at our house, removing it actually added a small amount to the value of the house and drastically increased its desirability to the average home buyer in that price range making it much easier to sell quickly.
Couldn't you have just filled the swimming pool in and preserved it so someone could, at a later date, unearth it and restore its functionality?
No, from the research I have done, this is not a possibility. One problem is with the plaster that typically lines a concrete pool shell. It apparently is designed to perform best when it is constantly submerged in water. If it is left out of water, even underground, for a long period of time, it may not be usable again later. In addition, it would be very difficult to fill in a large inground swimming pool and then empty all the dirt or sand out of it again without physically damaging the somewhat delicate plaster lining. Another issue with this approach is drainage. Where would all the rainwater go that would be trapped in the filled-in pool. The small bottom drain that most pools have would not be nearly enough to provide for proper drainage of the area, even if you could keep it open somehow.
Does the prior existence of a removed swimming pool need to be revealed on a seller's disclosure form when selling a house?
I think it absolutely does, unless you have completely removed all of the swimming pool and its related piping, decks, foundations, etc that might prevent a future owner from using the land in a normal fashion. In our case, we did not remove the entire pool shell from underground so we did indicate this to the people who bought our house. If you hide something like this, and the new owners want to someday install a pool, and can't do it or find out it will cost them double the normal amount because they have to remove the remains of your old pool first, you are going to be in trouble.