If you’re like a lot of folks in Maryland, the first cool breeze of fall…
If you’re looking to make 2021 the year you turn your backyard into a pool paradise, congratulations! It’s a big decision and one that requires some homework to make sure you get an exceptional outdoor living experience. One of the key decisions is choosing among the various pool installers near you.
We’ve put together some general tips, things to look for, some things to watch out for, and some questions to ask to help you make the decision that’s best for your space, your aesthetics, and your budget.
Tips to Find a Reputable Pool Builder
As with hiring any contractor, there are some basic things you should do to help find the right pool contractor.
General Tips and Things to Look For
General tips include:
- Ask friends, family, and neighbors who installed their pool and are they happy with it.
- Check out websites for pool installers near you. Do they provide the services you want? Look for someone who has been in business 10 years or more.
- Read reviews – Google reviews, Angie’s List, Houzz, etc. Does the pool builder respond to both positive and negative reviews? Look for 4 stars or above for the overall rating.
- Check to make sure they are licensed, bonded, and insured. This should be on their website. Verify it with the state.
- Choose 3 or more inground pool installers to give you quotes.
Questions to Ask Pool Installers
Keep a list of questions handy, and take notes when each pool contractor comes out to create an estimate. Here are some questions to ask:
- How many pools they’ve installed in the last year, whether fiberglass or concrete (gunite)?
- References, do they have any? A reputable pool builder will have a list ready to hand over. Call those people to find out what they liked and what could have been better.
- Do you get a detailed estimate, with everything in writing and drawings to scale?
- Can you get copies of their licensing and insurance coverage?
- Is there a detailed payment schedule?
- Are there warranties on materials and workmanship?
- Ask if they also install new landscaping or do you have to hire another company to do that?
- When they can start on your project.? If it’s too far out in the future, that could be a deal-breaker. But someone who says they can start tomorrow? That’s a little shady.
Things to Watch Out For
If during your research you get a bad feeling about an installer, don’t even bother to have them come for an estimate. Trust your gut.
There are a number of things to watch out for when a pool contractor makes the site visit. These include:
- A pushy salesperson who wants you to sign the contract right away.
- An unbelievably low estimate. What are they leaving out?
- They require a huge down payment. Under Maryland law, a contractor cannot accept more than 1/3 of the value of the contract as a down payment.
- They can start tomorrow. A reputable pool builder will have projects they are currently working on and will fit your job into their schedule.
- They’re late, or rude in the initial site visit. You don’t need that.
Choosing Among Pool Installers
Read all of the literature the various companies left with you. Read the contracts. Visit the manufacturer’s website if you’re getting a fiberglass pool. Compare pool contractors and their estimates. If prices are similar and everyone checks out, you may go with the one who can start first.
Other deciding factors can cost. You may eliminate the highest bid if it’s way out of bounds, or if you liked that contractor the best, you may be able to work with them to find how you can bring the overall cost of the project down, while still getting the inground pool you want.
Whatever you decide, happy swimming!
Make It Exceptional. Make It Woodfield.
If you’re looking for expert inground pool installation from a team that can do your patio and landscaping as well, you’re in the right place. Woodfield Outdoors is an experienced Maryland pool builder serving discerning homeowners in Anne Arundel County, Baltimore City, Baltimore County, Carroll County, Cecil County, Harford County, and Howard County.
Schedule a call today to get an estimate. You’ll be swimming before you know it!