Hi all - just wanted to make a quick intro and then ask some very basic questions I'm sure are covered somewhere else (I did as much searching as I could before hand, I swear).
All my life I've lived in very small quarters here in NYC, but I'm looking at homes in the suburbs and now I'm stoked in one way in particular, the yard. I've grown vegetables out of plastic containers, and my kids had a pool I used to fill up in my driveway, but I've never had more than 100 sq ft of contiguous space to have an outdoor kitchen, a pool or a garden.
I'm just about there now - haven't quite bought the house yet, but it should be going through soon. I was split - half the places I saw had inground pools and I considered that to be a positive, but it seemed like in every case we couldn't find what we were looking for in terms of fit until this last one, which of course was pool-less.
So while the house goes through the closing process, I'm trying to think about how to hit the ground running and starting to research this as thoroughly as possible.
What I'm thinking so far - I've got a 37x45' space in the backyard that would be awesome for an above ground (or semi inground) pool and a deck. I don't think in the inground is going to be cost feasible, since my finance manager is a ruthless cost controller who's already raising an eyebrow at my IGP plans (she's a good cook though, so there's that).
What I don't know yet:
- Real costs - I'm going to have some excavation to do, and I was thinking a 21x15' pool, so there's not a trivial amount of dirt that needs to be moved. Not sure if this is DIY, DIY with a rental (like a mini excavator), or if I want to bypass the Youtube fail compilation and just hire someone what that might cost.
- How DIY is this? I'm a big DIYer - I'm an engineer (which usually just means you get onto the highlight portion of that Youtube video above). I've got every powertool known to man and I know how to use 'em, and I have a couple of handy helpers. Is an AGP really a weekend DIY proposition, or is that only if the DIYer in question is a pool installer full time?
- Winter - for those outside the frozen zone, a memo - winter sucks. Really, really badly. I have one car we haven't seen in three weeks because it's been buried under ice (I assume I parked there, if we ever thaw out, I might have to file a police report). Is there anything additional to consider when deciding AGP vs IGP (or the semi-variety).
- Semi vs AGP - One reason I prefer the above ground is that I have one small child (the other two are big swimmers) and have smaller children in the family, so there's some implicit safety in the AGP (that might be debatable but that's how I see it off the bat at least). One thing I thought about is possibly going 2' further down, just so that it's not far off the ground but still far enough that a little one can't just hop or fall in. How much does my life get complicated if I go the semi-route?
- Saltwater - I'd really prefer to get a saltwater system going, if only because one of my kids is a little sensitive to chlorine, and always prefers the saltwater pools we visit. I assume this is attainable in an AGP, just that I'd need to stick to one of the resin models because of potential erosion (I'm also very close to the ocean, so that's also a consideration even if I stick with chlorine).
This is everything I can think of off the bat; please feel free to share your thoughts, point me in the right direction, tell me I'm crazy, or anything else you think might be at least semi-constructive (don't tell me I'm ugly, I've got that covered).