Although celebrity homes and movies make swimming pools a staple of luxury houses, these water features may not be as appealing to average home buyers. 

As a kid, you may have dreamed of the day you could have a swimming pool in your backyard. If you had more expensive tastes, those dreams included an in-ground rather than an above-ground pool.

Now, you're an adult, you've had a pool at your house and it's time to sell the property. At this point, you likely understand the reality of owning a pool. In addition to relaxing in the water on a hot day, there are added responsibilities, including:

  • Safety regulations: Local governments may have rules regarding fencing around the pool and your house, the type of pool you can have and the distance a pool must be from your house.
  • Homeowners association regulations: Your HOA may determine what kind fencing you can have and whether you're allowed to have an in-ground or above-ground pool.
  • Maintenance demands: Pools must be cleaned, which includes changing filters, and covered during winter in colder climates.

These responsibilities mean more work and expenses. You've already experienced these issues, and potential home buyers may not be as interested in your house if they see you have a pool - except in areas where the weather is warm most of the year.

Considering the amount of work that comes with owning a pool, you'll need to pull out all the stops to convince buyers the feature is worthwhile.

Order a pool inspection

You can schedule a home inspection that is geared toward determining the status of your home's pool. A professional will examine several areas, including the safety of walking surfaces, recirculation equipment, fences, access doors and emergency equipment. Afterward, you'll receive a detailed report, which will include recommendations for any necessary repairs.

This type of inspection presents an advantage for selling your pool to home buyers who have children. Pools present a safety concern, as children can slip into the water unnoticed and drown. By verifying the safety of your pool with an inspection, you can give buyers peace of mind.

The report is also a benefit because pools can raise homeowners insurance rates. The document can be supplied to underwriters as verification proper measures have been taken to ensure the water feature is less of a liability.

Stage the pool

As odd as it may sound, pools are not immediately an attractive part of a home. Just as you'd stage your living room, you must stage your pool.

Here are some tips for sprucing up your water feature:

  • Clean it. Although you may have become comfortable cleaning your pool by simply removing leaves and other foreign objects from the water, you'll need a deep clean when selling your house. Consider calling a professional to for this task.
  • Clean the attached deck. A spotless pool doesn't mean much if the deck attached to it is filthy. Remove old dirt and grime with a pressure washer. Repaint and reseal the wood if it appears old and worn out.
  • Fix broken safety features. Check your fences and gates for needed repairs. Whether you're applying a fresh coat of paint or replacing the fence altogether, don't skimp on making your fence and gates appear sturdy.
  • Create an outdoor seating area. Place outdoor furniture on the deck or patio near the pool. This step can make the space feel more inviting. Plus, it gives parents a place to sit while they watch their kids in the pool.