House Buying: Is a Pool, Hot Tub or Jacuzzi Worth It?

Written by: Christy Rakoczy

When you are shopping around for a home, it is tempting to get caught up in thinking about all of the great features that you are going to take advantage of in your new abode. Many people are enticed by offerings such as swimming pools, hot tubs and jacuzzis, which can promise to take a home from ordinary to extraordinary. You may have visions of parties by the swimming pool, late nights in the hot tub or relaxing evenings in the bath. Before you embrace those visions, however, you need to consider the cost and whether a pool, hot tub or jacuzzi is worth the expense.

The Costs of a Hot Tub, Pool or Jacuzzi

Hot tubs, swimming pools and jacuzzis can all be very expensive to operate and to maintain. For example:

  • With a swimming pool, you will need chemicals for the pool (chlorine or bromine), you will need a cleaning service to come in at least bi-weekly (unless you plan to balance the water and vacuum the pool yourself) and you will need to pay for the electricity costs of the pool filter running. You’ll also need to pay for the electricity to heat the pool if you desire it to be warm, and for someone to open and close the pool each year if you do not live in a climate where the weather is nice year-round. Filling the pool when water evaporates can run up your water bill, and the cost of a swimming pool cover  to use to keep the heat in during summer months is a one-time expense you’ll incur. If something goes wrong with the pool, such as a problem with the liner or the need for the pool to be resurfaced, then you are looking at tens-of-thousands of dollars in swimming pool costs. All of this adds up, and the Wall Street Journal estimates that the operating and maintenance costs of your pool can be as much as $3,000 per year.
  • For a hot tub, the operation costs can be smaller than a swimming pool but the costs still are not small. You can expect to have an increase in electricity costs, as well as the expenses associated with maintaining your hot tub and keeping it clean. The costs can vary greatly depending upon what electricity costs where you live, the temperature you keep your hot tub on and how often you use it. Still, you can expect to spend several hundred dollars every year when all is said and done.
  • A jacuzzi is less expensive than a pool or a hot tub and the most regular expense will normally be the cost of water and electricity to fill the bath when you need it.  However, if something goes wrong, then repairs on your jacuzzi can cost several thousand dollars.

When you decide if these costs are worth it, think about how often you will really use the pool, hot tub or jacuzzi. Many people think that they will use these features all the time but when reality sets in, the novelty wears off and the pool, hot tub or jacuzzi get little use.  It is important to carefully consider your lifestyle to decide if the expense makes sense for you.


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