Renovating or Building a pool? Here are things that will help you decide what suits you best.
Welcome to the Pool Doctor of the Palm Beaches online podcast with your hosts, Holly Colasurdo and Elizabeth Varian.
Elizabeth Varian: Hey everybody. Welcome to Pool Doctor of the Palm Beaches podcast. We’ve got Holly in a very, very busy office over there at Pool Doctor today.
Holly Colasurdo: Yeah. It is. Hello guys.
Elizabeth Varian: It’s summertime, and you guys are hopping. We’ve got back to school happening, and you guys are building out pools, cleaning and maintaining them. And sounds like we’ve got meetings going in the background, so we’ll kind of speak clearly so everybody can hear us. Today we’re gonna talk about building new or renovating. do one versus the other, and let’s just kind of jump right in and ask, “Why would someone choose to build and why would someone choose to renovate?”
Holly Colasurdo: A good reason is, if you choose to build, is definitely if you buy a home, especially if it doesn’t have a pool and you want to build a pool, if it has an old pool, and you want a different design. Those are pretty big deals. Renovating is a different story. Around every 20 years or so, most in-ground pools are in need of some type of renovation, part face life, part modernization, especially in a Florida climate. Pretty typical and pretty common. Those are the big differences. Some common renovation, like deck resurfacing, even think coping replacement, maybe an interior they want different. There’s so many options with interior surfaces these days or addition of water features, really neat waterfalls or bubblers. Those are fun.
You might want to remove an old slide if you have a slide, or you might want to add a water slide or maybe add a spa or convert just to saltwater. There are a lot of different things that come into play when you’re renovating. You just want to put your own style on it, especially if you buy a home that already has a pool. Most people do like to change it up a bit without having to build new. And just a little bit can go a long way. So sooner or later every pool, especially if you’re renovating, needs some major work done whether practical or cosmetic.
Elizabeth Varian: So then it basically comes down to now, obviously, if you buy a house and it doesn’t have anything in the backyard and you want a pool, that’s when you’re gonna build. I mean, that’s a given, and they can listen to our podcast on fiberglass versus concrete.
Holly Colasurdo: Right.
Elizabeth Varian: But if they have an existing pool, they have the options of either renovation or just, hey, start from scratch, because you want a modern pool and they have a kidney pool.
Holly Colasurdo: Right.
Elizabeth Varian: That makes total sense. And there are so many different features that can be added these days that maybe weren’t around when the original pool was built when you buy the house.
Holly Colasurdo: Oh yes. Oh yes.
Elizabeth Varian: So you can make it your literal backyard oasis, make it fun for kids or parties. So that makes total sense in really figuring out what your needs and wants are before you choose to build, scrap it all, and start from scratch versus just adding some things here and there. There’s gotta be major cost difference. I would assume renovation and even build, it even depends on all the add-ons and features you want, but what are some cost differences that we’re gonna look at with a build versus a renovation?
Holly Colasurdo: Well, that’s kind of, actually, the bigger part. Minor changes can be affordable enough to put, maybe, on a credit card. That’s typical pool renovation cost. Major changes-
Elizabeth Varian: That’s a good way to visualize what the costs are gonna be.
Holly Colasurdo: Yeah. Because that’s so simple. Major changes can cost as much as a brand new pool or even more. But kind of along the same lines is that it just depends on what you want. If you want to renovate it, it just depends on what you want. Like you said, you have so many options these days you can really go in and change an old pool and it end up costing more than making a brand new pool.
Elizabeth Varian: It’s like shopping. Yeah, you walk into the mall and you can buy as many clothes as your credit card will allow.
Holly Colasurdo: Right. Right. Oh yeah.
Elizabeth Varian: And new pools, we did discuss the cost again with the concrete versus fiberglass, and that podcast is available on your website.
Holly Colasurdo: Like you said when you go into a store and you’ve maxed out your card then you open up the other one that saves you 15% or more because you need more credit.
Elizabeth Varian: Spoken like true shopping women.
Holly Colasurdo: “Wait. I want that bubbler. I’m gonna borrow some money from my family. I want that bubbler in my pool.”
Elizabeth Varian: When I walk into the Pool Doctor offices, you guys have this amazing wall set up where you can literally see all your tile options. You can see your coping options, and I really can see that renovation can really take on a whole new mindset of its own in the regards of the design it’s so unlimited. And all the features with lighting and water. I love the beach feature that I see now that you guys are building out a lot of … Where if I don’t want to actually go for a swim but I want to sit in the water on my lounge chair with the umbrella up and not get burnt . I just think those are fantastic.
Holly Colasurdo: Those sun shelves are great.
Elizabeth Varian: Yeah.
Holly Colasurdo: Especially your pets. If you have pets, they love that little area, because most dogs, they don’t want to get in the water.
Elizabeth Varian: They don’t have to , but then they can go on the little shelf area and it’s perfectly fine. So a renovation, it is something to consider if you want to bring the pool to current options, if you will.
Holly Colasurdo: Right. Right.
Elizabeth Varian: That kind of brings into mind that that means there’s gotta be a lot of planning involved if I’m either a or building. So what do I have to keep in mind for what type of planning has to go into this?
Holly Colasurdo: You definitely need a plan before you do anything. The first thing you should do is build a budget. What is your budget?
Elizabeth Varian: So don’t keep maxing out those credit cards.
Holly Colasurdo: Yeah. No. That’s important. That’s important. Do you have a $10,000 budget? Do you have a $20,000 budget? Do you have a $100,000 budget? It just depends on what you want. Pictures. Pictures are so important. Pick out what you like, whether you go to Houzz or whether you find a picture in a magazine, whether you have a friend who has a pool that you love. Maybe you like the tile but not the interior surface. Take a picture of the tile. That’s important. Then you need to calculate your costs. Look and kind of check out what does it cost for this tile. We have that here at the office. We have tiles that range on the lower spectrum to very, very expensive tile. And then you have to choose a contractor. So, so important. I can’t reiterate that enough. Make sure you have, are you using a company that has a licensed contractor?
Elizabeth Varian: Yeah. Make sure they’re legitimate.
Holly Colasurdo: Those are four things that you know you need to plan for: Budget, pictures, calculate your costs, and then choose a contractor. And then they should be able to help you out from there. That’s their job.
Elizabeth Varian: Sit down with them and then start pulling it all together. Because, like I said, when I walk in your offices, it’s amazing to see all the options. You may see various things that you like in magazines and stuff, but you guys have other things, then, you can go, “Oh, you like this. You might like these other options as well.”
Holly Colasurdo: Right. Right.
Elizabeth Varian: So definitely plan to take that initial planning stage seriously. Don’t just say, “Oh, put whatever together.” Your money is valuable, and you want something that you’re gonna like for a long time. For some reason if I can’t afford a renovation or definitely a new pool build maybe out of my budget, now, I know for pool builds you guys have a connection with getting financed for renovations and stuff. Sometimes you want a renovation because you want to save on your electricity or other areas, like you said, it up a little bit. What can I do to the pool if I’m just looking for saving money?
Holly Colasurdo: And that’s pretty common. That’s very, very common and very understandable. It’s small steps that you probably should take. Equipment is so important. It’s like the heart is to the body. To upgrade your equipment, if it’s old it’s gonna be shocking, because it’s not inexpensive, but it is so important to the pool, especially to save money on utilities. That’s where it comes in. It’s so important. You need a good motor, especially in Florida. I mean, everything here just goes so quickly because of our weather and our winds and our rainy season, our filters. That is so important, just to upgrade the equipment. It might not be a small amount of money, but it’s an affordable step. Again, it’s a credit card thing.
It’s enough to put on a credit card. That’s important. That should be the first thing that someone should do, especially if they bought a new home and the pool’s great, there aren’t any leaks, but yet something’s not right. It’s always that it’s the equipment. What I think is important is change out your traditional pool lights. A lot of people don’t know this. Change them out and replace them with LED. Do you know that one pool light uses the same energy as 20 LED lights? A lot of people don’t know that.
Elizabeth Varian: Really?
Holly Colasurdo: Yep. Change out your LED lights. Change over from a chemical system with built in automation with a variable speed motor. All that stuff is so important, and you will definitely see a change in your electric bill. You’ll be like, “Did they not calculate it right this month?” Once you get all that great new equipment, they just make them so much more efficient these days. Look at it. Study it. Contact us. We can do it. They’re so much more efficient your electric bill will be like, “What?” This is really, really neat. It’s important, and it really adds up in the long run.
Elizabeth Varian: And that definitely saves a considerable amount of money over a whole new pool or a renovation.
Holly Colasurdo: Oh, it does.
Elizabeth Varian: If all you’re doing is trying to save some money. That’s fantastic.
Holly Colasurdo: Right. I mean, educating customers is just so important for what we do as a business. Just because you move into a home that has a pool or you might think of owning a pool and you’ve never owned one before, really study what it takes to have a hole in the ground with water. I mean, like I said, we’re not putting men on the moon but it is important to be educated about everything that your pool is and does. Equipment, the people you use, it’s just so important for that hole in the ground with the water to last you a good long time.
Elizabeth Varian: That’s fantastic. This is just, I never would have never have thought of just changing the lights out. The equipment-
Holly Colasurdo: Yeah. Simple, tiny things.
Elizabeth Varian: … That definitely makes sense. If I think about if my car if I keep it maintained and running well and the oil and everything checked and the tires at the right level that … I don’t buy keep buying as much gas. It lasts longer. You don’t always think about that with a pool sitting in the backyard.
Holly Colasurdo: Right.
Elizabeth Varian: So this is wonderful. I hope anyone listening, if you’re looking, like we said, you want to be shopping in the mall and you want to add all these new features to your pool, make it more fun, more party ready, more kid friendly, definitely look at renovations. If you bought a house where it’s kidney pool, but you really like more modern style, you want to actually change out the whole shape of the pool, then a pool build is something to consider. But if you’re just trying to save money, maybe give Pool Doctor of the Palm Beaches a call and say, “Hey, can you give us a consultation for how to save money, and it’s possibly a credit card charge of fixing equipment or changing out light bulbs.
Holly Colasurdo: Right. Right. On the end note here, I’m gonna always let everybody know it’s always good to get at least three bids just so you can get a variation. And always go with who you’re most comfortable with. Nobody’s really better than anybody out there. I mean, some might be, but get at least three bids, hire a licensed contractor, don’t always go with the lowest bid, maybe middle of the road is better. And remember when you’re thinking about renovating, think ahead, make smart plans, save your money. Knowing that that renovation, whether you’re looking forward to it or not is inevitable. That’s important.
Elizabeth Varian: Yeah. That’s wonderful, and those three bids, again, make sure they’re licensed contractors.
Holly Colasurdo: Right.
Elizabeth Varian: You don’t want to be taken by someone you can’t find when they disappear. So wonderful. Well, thank you so much for your time today. This was very informative. Every time we talk I learn something new.
Holly Colasurdo: Isn’t that funny? I love that about the light bulb. Who really knows that? Who really knows that?
Elizabeth Varian: Yeah. You don’t think about that. I mean, in your house you do. But I just never thought about it with a pool.
Holly Colasurdo: Yeah.
Elizabeth Varian: Everybody, stay tuned for our next podcast, and if you do have a pool build or renovation or want to get a consultation for saving money, give Pool Doctor of the Palm Beaches a call and check us out on the web at PoolsPalmBeaches.com, and until next time, thank you very much, Holly.
Holly Colasurdo: You’re welcome. Thanks guys.
Elizabeth Varian: Have a great day.
Thank you for listening to our monthly podcast. Be sure to contact Pool Doctor of the Palm Beaches for your South Florida pool needs.
Call 561-586-2815 or visit us online at www.PoolsPalmBeaches.com.