Thoughts on removing an inground swimming pool
I would like any input you smart people can provide on the idea of removing an inground swimming pool. The pool in 20x40 with a liver and 10 years old. We live in MD.
The pool currently has problems. It needs a new filter, pump, liner and we think there is a cracked pipe. It also sucks money, between the electricity to run the filter and the chemicals, it is a major money drain. Also, if you can't tell, we don't like it. It isn't the pool we would have chosen. It takes up the whole backyard.
However whenever we tell someone we are removing it, they look at us like we are from another planet. Is it really such a crazy idea?
I don't think pools increase the value of homes where I live. Because of trees, the pool doesn't warm up and is only useable when we have a week of 90+ days or we run the propane heater,$$$$$. Also my house is going to be a hard sell, when we eventually move. It's unique and maintenance intensive. I think anything that would decrease the maintenance would be a good thing.
qdognj16 years ago
My experience with pool removals(A relative looked into doing such)is that it is NOT cheap to do..All materials must be removed regardless of whether it is vinyl or concrete.Then a proper type of fill must be brought in to fill the ensuing hole, then the fill must be graded properly,And no matter how well the filling and grading is done, you'll likley have some sort of settlement, and need to add some additional fill in few years..It is likley cheaper to fix the pool then remove it, at least where i am from as the demolition,carting of materials,dumping of materials, the cost of fill, and regrading and seed will be more then the cost of a new liner...
pooks1976Original Author16 years ago
My dad is in construction. He is always looking for places to dump dirt. We are aware of the cost of removing the pool and feel that it would cost about the same as fixing the problems mentioned in the first post. However in the long term we think that it would be less costly to remove it because of the maintenance costs and the loss of potential buyers, when it sells. There isn't a year that goes by that we don't spend at least a $1,000 on it, between chemicals, electric, water, and propane. That's if nothing breaks, last year it needed a new cover.
terezosa / terriks16 years ago
I have heard of people "remodeling" pools. Is this an option for you?
scryn16 years ago
We have a similar pool and looked into replacing it with a different one, so that all the parts can be upgraded. The pool companies we talked to stated that they can only make the pool bigger! They need "virgin" ground and they can not remove the pool and then put in a smaller one. Either you place a new pool in a different place OR remove the old pool and put in a larger one in the same place. I figured that we could take out the old pool, put in a small one and then "backfill" but I guess I was wrong!!!
Anyways, I have heard the cost of getting rid of a big inground pool is about 10 grand! So be prepared for scary numbers. A new liner is maybe 1-2 grand. Every year we open our pool, cross our fingers and turn it on!
We are trying to save a lot of money up, just in case something happens with it. It is frusterating however I do enjoy it when we use it. However I am in NY, so we only use it like three times a year. Really not worth the upkeep!
pooks1976Original Author16 years ago
I've never heard of a "remodel" for a pool.
marge72716 years ago
We took out a 30 foot by 20 foot pool in Southern California that was concrete with the jacuzzi, filter etc.diving board all in concrete. The building department required a permit,inspections, and there are other requirements, you cannot just throw dirt in, you have to even break up the bottom of the pool or the liner, break the sides, and that had to be done with a bulldozer, jackhammers, etc. and then other equipment that lifted the concrete into a truck.
Luckily my husband is a contractor and worked with guys who drive that equipment. It was quite a spectacle--every small boy in the neighborhood was fascinated.
At the end, it must be compacted and filled with specific filler or you cannot build on it for 20 years and that restriction attaches to your land. we had to have a geologist, etc. because we wanted to build (and have just finished) We had to put in pea gravel, not only dirt.
When they broke up the concrete, it turned out the electrical lines were corroded, and the water returns were leaking. Good thing we did it. Its fun when the kids are little --they are so thrilled with a pool (which is ridiculous as we can see the ocean from our window. )
but us grown ups get bored testing the water, adding chemicals, water, replacing and cleaning the filter, etc.
How costly the removal depends on the size and how much concrete is involved. We are happy we did it.
An old pool is not a welcome sight to a potential buyer, even in the desert.
pooks1976Original Author16 years ago
Thank you all so much for sharing your opinions and experiances. I think we are going to remove it, even with the high price tag. It will be nice to have a backyard.
cpowers2116 years ago
Pools can be a pain. I didn't know how much was involved with the removal. YIKES! Goodluck getting the pool removed. I hope it all works out and turns out to be a little less than you were expecting.
padrefan16 years ago
you can try posting this question on the pool and spa forum. While most there are huge pool lovers and may think you're crazy, there are a couple of builders who frequent the forum and may be able to give you an idea on the cost of removing your pool. Also, there are a few (one in particular) who removed his huge pool and replaced with a smaller and much nicer pool. The difference in his backyard is AMAZING! Search for mkfmedic if you want to see pictures of before and after. Of course, he is in Southern California, not MD, so a remodel/redo may not be anything you're interested in. Just thought you might want to try that forum.
quirkyquercus16 years ago
If it's an "olympic" or "jr olympic" sized pool it could be valuable and worthwhile to a serious swimmer as you can not swim-swim in those kidney shaped pools, they are pretty much useless only for decoration and watching the children splash around. I don't know if there are a lot of serious swimmers in your area. But if it were my house and I wanted to sell soon, the first thing I'd do is find out where the serious swimmers are and ask them what their opinion is on the pool and do a little market research. What would concern me the most is that I think having a big backyard is more desirable to most people and if the pool takes up all the space then.....
sue3616 years ago
DH said it should be about $3k unless there are access issues. They smash in the coping and then fill it with sand. Could be more if there is a lot of patio area as well.
pkguy16 years ago
From the sounds of it I would get rid of it if you're not in the sunshine states. You're limiting your buyers I think. While I would love to have a pool I just don't want the hassles of pool ownership or the expense. We bought our house only a couple of months ago and quite a few of the ones we looked at had pools and almost every one of them were these oversized rectangular monstrosities with little to no grass or garden left. Who wants to look at an eyesore like that. Well I guess some folks do but more than likely more don't.
mfbenson16 years ago
I don't get it. You bought the house knowing the pool was there, right? What has changed? I mean, why do you not like it now, though back when you bought it must have been at least acceptable?
If you're doing all this with an eye towards selling the place, I would consider what it will cost to remove vs. what the house would sell for with the pool in place.
clg706716 years ago
I just want to say that I'm with you for removing it. I just had an aboveground pool removed and my yard is so much bigger now. Pools are great for little kids, but for us adults even a couple hours a week of pool work is still a couple hours that I could be doing something else. (Plus, my dog can't swim.)
talley_sue_nyc16 years ago
10 years is a long time, mfbenson--the pool has aged, for one thing.
Plus they have much more accurate info on how much they will actually use or enjoy the pool (reality vs. dreams).
I don't think there's anything strange in the fact that, when they were about to own the pool they thought it would be acceptable, and now they think it's a royal pain.
Things change--pools as well as people.
pooks1976Original Author16 years ago
The pool was never a positive, even when we bought this house. The house had so much that we liked, that we settled for the pool. Now things are breaking and it needs to be repaired or removed. The house has many unique features(1.5 acre lot, 5 garage bays, trees, veiw, no HOA) that are just not available with other houses, so we don't want to move. Also the realtor fees alone are many times the cost of removing the pool, so moving seems an extreme and more expensive solution.
jerzeegirl16 years ago
I hear you can grow great roses in the spot where a pool has been removed. :-)
annainpa16 years ago
I would absolutely remove that above-ground pool, given the scenario you set forth. You will save the money on all the new equipment, save money on maintenance, not to mention time, gain the backyard you want and attract more buyers when you go to sell. It would be a different story if you adored it and lived in a sunbelt.
wk-davis_comcast_net15 years ago
I realize I am late coming to this party but I am also in Maryland and I am looking to fill in my 20X40 pool. If you had your pool finished I would love to here about your cost and your contractors name. I am looking to get this done soon.
saphire15 years ago
I am surprised that the pool is such a big deal on a 1.5 acre lot. The way the posts read I assumed the lot was 100 x 100
When I look at lots the first thing I check is whether I can put in a pool (I do not actually want one, just like to see if I can). I am in area where .25 is a huge lot commanding a premium and am NOT in the sunbelt
pooks1976Original Author15 years ago
I finally have a quote, so I figured I would update this thread in case anyone ever searches on a similar topic.
After having 3 excavators come out, two of which did not have big enough equipment to do the job, we have a quote to get rid of the pool and regrade the backyard for $5,800. This includes pulling the permits, getting rid of old equipment, and planting grass. We don't need dirt.
We are probably going to call a couple more companies, but now at least we have an idea. I must say that we really liked the company that gave us the quote.
patty_cakes15 years ago
Sounds to me like you could have the makings of a beautiful English garden~flagstone/brick pathways, bushes, small decorative trees, varieties of flowers, arbors, seating/meditation area, koi pond. Even a man-made lake somewhere on the property...*sigh*
Color me jealous in CA! ;o)
mnzinnia15 years ago
cori-some encouragement. I live in a home that had a cement in ground pool removed before we bought it (we wouldn't look at homes with pools--in MN??). After removal it left a great privacy fenced area w deck that the po had landscaped. In fact, that was what sold me on the home. Also, the removal was done properly--all debris was hauled away, not buried. The only "scar" is a place where the fence was cut for access and not skillfully repaired. Another bonus was that a 3/4 bath was added in the back of the house for swimmers and the existing half bath off the front hall was turned into a big storage closet (YES!).
We are looking at downsizing a bit. A nice ranch style home became available in our neighborhood. It was perfect...except for the inground pool. While I could visualize the yard with the pool removed, my dh does not want the hassle and won't consider a property with a pool. Unless you are in a climate where a pool is used 6+ months a year and in a neighborhood where it is expected, you will greatly increase the market for your home by removing it.
downsouth15 years ago
I knew someone that filled in their inground pool with dirt. She said it was expensive, but not as expensive as maintaining it.
jperiod15 years ago
MNzinnia, funny that you said a pool is only worth it if you can use it 6+ months a year. I live in Phoenix, and most people can only use their pools here 3 months, 5 months at max unless they have a heater and/or solar cover. But gosh darn, even for 3 months, it makes those 115 days just bearable!!
clairedev_aol_com14 years ago
I would love to hear from anyone in the Cleveland, OH area that has removed an inground cement pool. I am in the same boat as the original message in this list. I have a deteriorating pool; plumbing underground no good, upkeep unbelievably expensive, no one swims in it since kids grew up and moved out. I hope to remove the pool next spring. Seeking an excavation company with experience. HELP!
lazypup14 years ago
Consult with your homeowners insurance agent. In my neck of the woods the money you would save in liability insurance will pay the cost of removal in about 2 to 3 years.
peoniesandposies14 years ago
We removed a large 4 foot deep aboveground pool that was actually set into the hillside. So basically one side was at ground level and the other side was exposed. The yard fell away so it was actually terraced even above that pool deck area to have a large patio. So we had to have dirt brought in to smooth and contour the hill. We also removed the chain link fence that was around the pool area (basically from each back corner edge of the house to about 6 feet behind the pool). We have an approximately 1 1/2 acre lot, so this area was about a tenth of the backyard
It was the best $5000 we spent on the house! We live in Wisconsin and even with a solar cover on the pool, it was only used 3 days in the previous summer. I remember before we put an offer in on our house, that it was a huge drawback. It was .... electricity, chemicals, upkeep, solar cover purchase, worry about neighborhood children, etc.
susana_200614 years ago
I sold my mother's home in LA around two years ago. She had put in a pool around 1955, and about 20 years late, when no one had used it in a long time, she had it filled in and topped with gravel. Later, she had the top filled with concrete. You easily see the stones around the perimeter of the pool.
It didn't seem to cause any problems. No one complained about the pool being gone.
I think that for many people, a pool is not really a plus.
stardust758214 years ago
We have an old pool built probably in 1962 here in Central Florida, and we were told it was resurfaced once before in Marcite. It is now leaking and don't know where yet. In dire need of resurfacing too. My husband wants to fill it with dirt and I want to resurface it. Is this advisable to just fill it in? How does that affect our home value? Would this decrease the value or it doesn't matter? I did call the city and they said we do not need a permit to fill in the pool with dirt. Two pool companies said we would have to tear up the walls and such, which would cost around $10-12 K versus $1,200 in just filling in the pool. What are the consequences of us just doing this, even I personally don't want to fill in the pool.... :(
Any suggestions or inputs would most certainly be welcomed!
Have a super day, y'all!
whozisdis_yahoo_com13 years ago
After years of living on boats, having two young babies convinced my wife and I to move to land. We got a deal on a nice house--because it wasn't selling, due to the backyard pool! For more than a decade, it was great--the kids loved it, became excellent swimmers (on the swim team, even!)--but now they are out the door, and the empty nest is way too big, with a aging pool that requires too much expense to maintain--not such a "green" feature these days.
We live on a steep hillside, leading down to a creek, with concerns about slides as well. Access to the yard is also a problem. The swimming season runs from July to September, if that. We're considering keeping the empty pool, but decking it over. That way future owners have the option of having a pool, or not (koi farm, anyone?); we won't be geologically tampering with the hillside, and the expense is minimized, since I have access to timbers from some local warehouses that have been razed. (This is Plan D or E, by now--any thoughts? signed, Poolless in Portland.
peoniesandposies13 years ago
We removed our pool ... it was the best money that we ever spent! I remember when we were looking at houses that I didn't like this house because there was a pool, but we bought the house anyways. We had it professionally bulldozed, dirt brought in, graded, then seeded.
We only used it for 4 years (or should I say sometimes using it. The 2nd to last year it was only used 3x the whole summer and then the next summer, NO one got in it. It just kept sucking money for electricity, chemicals, new solar cover, time spent adjusting the chemical levels, etc. Truthfully only families with young kids really use a pool enough to justify one in a colder climate. It might be different in a southern state.
susana_200613 years ago
My parents had put in a pool in the 1950's in So. Cal. After kids were grown, it was used so little & maintenance was a bother. They had it filled in with dirt & topped with gravel in the '60's. Later my mom had the top cemented over. You could still see the coping around the pool.
Anyway, the house was put on the market in 2005 -- I heard nothing negative about the pool. One man said he might be interested in restoration. The house eventually sold -- there were no issues about permits, lack thereof, etc.
afr6613 years ago
I had my inground pool removed and filled in about 2 years ago for $2500. It was a wooden structure with a liner and didn't have a concrete bottom so that helped. They just took out the framing, panels, lining etc and then filled in with clean fill and graded it. Looks 100% better.
stir_fryi SE Mich13 years ago
I live in metro Detroit in a terrible housing market. The only house to sell in our sub in the last three years was -- you guessed it -- the house down the street with a built-in gunite pool! It sold in NINE days! For what it is worth the house was very, very nice and the pool was very nicely done.
The family that bought it has three kids from 11-16. So, I would agree that families with kids love a pool, others maybe not so much.
I wish I could have a pool for my kids as I am home all summer with them. Then again, having a neighbor with a pool is the next best thing!
jane__ny13 years ago
We have lived in our house for 35 years and have a pool. My kids preferred to go to the town pool so they could be with their friends and not have to deal with my 'rules.'
My family lived in the City and thought it was the greatest thing coming every weekend to swim. Hardly saw them all winter, but when summer rolled around, I had a housefull every weekend.
We bought our house during the housing slump of the early 70's. We got it at a great price. My husband always wanted a pool and still uses it every day during the summer. He comes home from work and goes out to the pool in the dark. He can't imagine being without it. Hates public pools.
tduff13 years ago
We bought a house with a pool. We loved everything about the house and the parts of the yard that didn't contain a pool. After a few years of living with it and letting all the neighbourhood kids swim in it because none of my kids would - we ripped that baby out!
I documented it for the person that buys our house one day...you can see it all at the link.
Here is a link that might be useful: Destruction of the pool
reinholt13 years ago
So we live in an old house with a small (14' x 14' x 3') indoor pool. My young daughters enjoy it during the summer but the space could be better used as a garage or play room. If I fill it in, I would like to do the demolition work myself to save money. Its small enough that I think I could do it without much trouble, although I don't know if there is rebar in the underlying concrete. Can anyone refer me to a comprehensive instruction manual on how to do the demolition work? Thanks.
pcreamer_cox_net12 years ago
if it had been a above ground pool or a variant of a non-cement pool (a above ground pool partially sunken), taking it out will guarantee at least equal value or increased value.
In my own case, it added $10k to my value.
If it had been a inground regular (partial yard) it would hae been different, but in my area a pool is a hard sell and would actually make it harder to sell, therefore it wouldnt be a addon value.
alisonn12 years ago
This info is 3 days old:
Called the town about the pool at the house we are about to close on. Asked about permits. They said "All we require is a demolition permit. You give us the proof of the demo in order to have the pool taken off your taxes."
"WHAT?", says I. In NJ, a pool is considered a detriment, yet I'm paying higher property taxes because I have an in-ground pool?" I asked how much exactly I am being billed for the pool, she said that the lady who knows that won't be in until next Thursday. So, we'll see. Also, that means that if we just filled it in ourselves, we would NOT get the money off our taxes. There are probably more restrictions/permits, etc. in more urban areas--we play it kind of fast and lose up here in the rural tip of NJ.
Also, called a guy about removing the pool and got a quote for $3,500. There are no impediments to heavy machinery getting to the pool---THAT will drive up the cost. So, in other words, if you live on a standard city lot--think about it--how is that machinery going to get back there? Apparently, there's a lot of time ($$$$) involved in getting the machines in. We live on an unfenced, open lot.
Anyway--I'm surprised you get funny looks when it comes to filling in a pool--probably it's from folks who understand the joy, but never had to actually maintain a pool themselves. If it makes you happy, go for it.
steveinjersey12 years ago
I had a pool removed too when I bought my house here in NJ. There is a requirement from NJDEP that your removal company needs to comply with. Basically it concerns the fill material that gets put into the hole, how large the pieces are from the concrete that is broken up and put back into the hole, etc.
In Atlantic county, I needed a demolition permit, and then had to get inspections once the pool was removed and the cement chunks put into the hole, then again after the final fill was completed.
$3500 is a good price. Mine cost $5500 to remove.
c9pilot12 years ago
Why is this 5-year-old thread being revived?
marys100012 years ago
People in Michigan fill in pools all the time. My only issue when looking at one of these places is that they often do it on the cheap and don't have someone take out the cement around the pool or the top few feet of the pool wall if a cement pool. So you you can either see where the cement deck was/is or you run into cement when trying to put in deck footings, a garden bed whatever. Gee thanks a lot.
alisonn12 years ago
Thanks, Steve. Turns out my pool is costing $366 in property taxes each year.
LoveInTheHouse12 years ago
Ut oh. That's where we're moving to. Atlantic County, New Jersey. We love pools! I'd pay more for a house if it had one, especially an in-ground pool!
Jeanne Gale6 years ago
My husband and I live in Maine. A property we are considering, is a 3 bedrooms, and 1 bath house, with an inground pool. I would like to have the pool removed, a new septic system installed in its place, and add another bathroom! My husband says too expensive, but we could save a lot on property taxes. Has anyone ever done this?
k_n_rama6 years ago
is there someway we can cover up a pool and open say after a few years by next owner? I have a pool which is 18ft by 36ft with 8ft Deep and 3 ft Shallow ends.
SaltiDawg6 years agolast modified: 6 years ago
I bet the folks complaining about paying property taxes on their pool had no problem reporting the pool installation cost as a Capital Improvement and thus reducing their tax liability when they sold.
C Marlin6 years ago
These people are contemplating buying a house with a pool, then paying to remove it. They are not paying to install a pool.
writersblock (9b/10a)6 years ago
is there someway we can cover up a pool and open say after a few years by next owner?
I had a friend who owned a house where the previous owner had filled in the in-ground pool and used it to grow rare palms. She said they could have had the soil dug out and put the pool back in use but it would have been an awful job to do it, so they never bothered.