Top 10 Questions to Ask a Builder before Buying a Swimming Pool
1. How long have you been in business? Pool companies that have been around a long time usually have a good reputation. Usually, but there are exceptions. Always ask for references. And if they have any pools under construction in the area, ask if you can visit the site and talk to the homeowner about their experience so far. Also make sure they are not involved with any pending legal disputes.
2. Have you been in business under any other names? If they have, that could be a red flag that they changed their name because of bad reputation or BBB marks. Be cautious of this builder.
3. Are you a licensed and bonded contractor? Some states do not require licensing, but you will definitely want to find a licensed contractor. Most bad experiences with less-than-ethical pool builders are from homeowners that hire an unlicensed one to save a little money.
4. How much and what types of insurance do you have in place? You will want to make sure that any damage that occurs during installation – to property or people – is covered.
5. Are your warranties spelled out in writing? If they aren’t, beware. If they are, get a copy of it and familiarize yourself with the exclusions and coverage. One of the things to specifically check for is "Acts of God" coverage that covers things out of your control, such as storm damage.
6. Do you provide service after completion? This is important because there will be times you have questions regarding maintenance, and times you will need your pool serviced. You need a good local contact that can help you. The pool company you choose should stand by their service and their service team.
7. Will I be instructed on the operation of my pool? Any answer other than yes is not acceptable. Choose a different pool builder.
8. Will your crews clean up their messes? Oh yes, installing a pool is quite messy. Make sure the builder knows that you do not want to be the one to clean it up. This includes removing tire tracks from the access point.
9. Who is responsible for any damage to the house or the neighbor’s property? Also, who will repair any irrigation or sprinkler pipes broken during construction? Get this worked out before you move forward with any plans. Better yet, get it in writing.
10. Who applies for and obtains the permits? Get this worked out early. Permits can take a while.
These are only a few of the questions homeowners should have answered by potential pool builders. For more information on choosing, installing and maintaining a pool, visit PoolSpaForum.com