A Freestyle Pool & Spa custom pool with a sun shelf surrounded by a travertine deck area.

A Freestyle Pool & Spa custom pool with a sun shelf surrounded by a travertine deck area.

We expect summer to make an early bird entrance in Southwest Florida—and many of us dream of adding a pool to our homes as temperatures quickly climb.

But there's a reason to add a pool to your home aside from beating the heat. Depending on a pool's size and features, it can increase a home's resale value by at least by $25,000, says Judy Limekiller, a realtor with Coldwell Banker's Sarasota Central office. 

Plus, the pandemic has meant more time spent at home for everyone. “Home has never been more important, and a pool has never been more important to a home," Limekiller explains. Still, not all homes come with pools. So the question for the home buyer question becomes, "Is there room for a pool for the future?”

If the answer is yes, Stefan Baron, a sales and design agent with Freestyle Pools & Spas, shares some trends. Baron says a 14-by-28-square-foot pool with a 500-square-foot deck and screened-in cage typically starts around $60,000—but the average buyer he's seeing spends roughly $100,000. Here's what homeowners are loving right now.

A custom pool from Freestyle Pool & Spa with fountain water features.

A custom pool from Freestyle Pool & Spa with fountain water features.

Water features

"I’m seeing more young families shopping for pools, and they’re adding bubblers and small fountains to entertain young children, like the ones you might see at a splash pad for toddlers," Baron notes.

Sun shelves

Many buyers want to have loungers on a sun-shelf area. Typically about six inches deep, they mimic a seat in the Gulf’s shallows at the beach and bring a relaxed resort feel to the pool.

Smart home integration

Pool equipment is more efficient and user-friendly than ever, and buyers want more control. Through phone apps, buyers can activate their spa from work so it's ready once they get home, for instance.

Pool heaters 

"When new pool owners are unsure about a heater, I recommend waiting," Baron says. "Depending on sun exposure and depth, the pool may not need one, and it’s always something that can be added afterward."

Whatever options buyers choose, Baron suggests a side of patience, too. With the current real estate and renovations boom, expect a new pool build to take longer than usual.

“In line with the real estate market, we’re at a 100 percent capacity, and the shortage in construction materials affecting all industries also adds time to the project," Baron says. "From start to finish, expect it to take at least four months. But it’s a temporary issue."

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