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Thread: Looking for a builder in Austin

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    Join Date
    Feb 2015
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    Looking for a builder in Austin

    I'm in SW Austin, looking to get a smaller 14' x 30' rectangular no frills pool done. Swimming laps and volleyball mainly.

    I'm waiting on an estimate from Innovative. Boulder pools was close to my budget. Athena and Cascade are way out of my budget. Looking for other recs. Thanks!

  2. Back To Top    #2
    Patrick_B's Avatar
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    Re: Looking for a builder in Austin

    Welcome to TFP!

    You are in luck down there, plenty of excellent builders in the Centex area, and I am sure someone will weigh in with something for you. Good luck, and be sure to share you build with us. Enjoy the forum.
    TFP Moderator
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    28K Gal IG FreeForm, CLI Quartz, Pentair 36"SF & VS Pump, Dolphin M5, Rheem

  3. Back To Top    #3

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    Re: Looking for a builder in Austin

    Quote Originally Posted by tedujam View Post
    I'm in SW Austin, looking to get a smaller 14' x 30' rectangular no frills pool done. Swimming laps and volleyball mainly.

    I'm waiting on an estimate from Innovative. Boulder pools was close to my budget. Athena and Cascade are way out of my budget. Looking for other recs. Thanks!
    Hi there. We are also in SW Austin and are putting in a pool. We have had 4 pool builders out to our house and have gotten three bids. Our last house we wanted a pool but it just wasn't in the cards. The lot wasn't good for it (slope/easements) which caused all the pool quotes to be astronomical think 70k+ with just a pool and no features. I kinda hoped the desire would go away but it didn't so we ended up selling our house and moving 4 blocks to a house with a much bigger yard. Then right after we moved our van got totalled and we ended up having to get a new van with a new payment. (I know we could have bought used but we had a Odyssey before and with only 4 days to get a new one we couldn't find any used we liked) so we ended up resetting our payment and that put off the pool for awhile. Now here we are 18 months later and with the rate drop and appreciating house prices we are getting a pool for <100 extra month. We are so excited!

    I have had Innovative out to our old house and I know someone who used them. They are a in and out pool builder and you really have to stay on top of them. From what I understand the pool can be ok but for me I want a guarantee I won't have a big cracked shell in my yard in 10 years so I am going to spend a bit more up front. Also they have a F rating from Angies list which to me is a bad sign. I do have a coworker who used them and they are definitely a no frills builder and the attention to detail is low. If you don't have a complicated design and just want a basic pool they might work for you.

    We also had Cody, A&S, and a couple others out last time. In our last cul-de-sac we had 4 pools put in by neighbors and 3 were done by A&S and the 4th was done by Cody. The 3 A&S pool owners are extremely happy. They have also had good customer support for stuff like messing up the controller etc... The prices of those pools are all over the map. One was about a mid 30k small freeform pool with little frills, one is a large spa/pool combo for 70k+ with an outdoor bathroom/designer kitchen/bar area added (think huge like outdoor TV). The 3rd is a mid range 50k+ pool/spa. The Cody pool is a mess. The pool had major drainage issues and the first large rain we got they had a bunch of mud in their pool. They paid about 60k for the pool and were regretting it. I am not sure how Cody resolved the issue but the drainage in the yard is complicated and they didn't know what they were doing.

    Now fast forward to our new house. Our new next door neighbor has a Cascade pool which is pretty basic with a spa. Rectangular about 30x18ft with a spa. He got a deal because two people put in pools at the same time so they dropped the price a little. It was still pricey and the pool looks very basic with no pebble finish. The equipment is pretty good though and he has luders and basic tile for the coping/etc... with a fairly large sun deck.

    Based on this info we called 5 builders. A&S, Cascade, Athena, Millenium Pools, and Master Pools of Austin. A&S was the only one so far that is under our budget of 60k. The pool has about 460sq ft of sun deck with Oklahoma flag as accents. The pool is about 450sq ft 3->6ft natural pool. He did add a nice spa-like feature which has a half circle bench and margarita table and jets even though there is no separate spa. We really liked it. This included a single LED light, one skimmer, VS pump and Ozone. (I didn't read enough pool school yet before this quote). The plaster is their standard lifetime rock finish which is white (not too fond of it). The cost also included 2500 for a gas line for a grill which I would probably delete.

    The Cascade quote was close but had an extra skimmer. The pool was smaller and the deck was about 100sq ft larger. The designs were almost the same but with a bit more attention to detail. This included blue or grey pebble, ozone, auto fill, ozone, and a couple nice touches like a stacked flag wall to block the view of the pool equipment which brought the total to 65k.

    I haven't heard from Millenium on the quote. The thing that was weird is I felt he wasn't really listening to me. He is a small builder and makes amazing pools but he came in my yard and just started talking about what he would build without really asking what I want. I did like his ideas. The other strange thing is my lot is very large and has a lot of grade variations and he said he didn't have his equipment (which I told him on the phone it was a sloped yard) and he would be back in a day or so to measure. I don't know if he ever came or not but he hasn't called back and I pretty much figure he is really busy or not for me.

    Now comes Master Pools. They are fairly new but have an amazing showroom next to Jack Allen's. I called because frankly they are within a mile of my house and I like having a place I can go and complain if I need help. I asked how they got such a nice office for being so new but turns out they have a booming commercial business that does a lot of the prominent pools in Austin like JW Marriott, Seaholm tower, etc... Their commercial side is Atlantis Aquatic Group. Anyway I was impressed with the designer. They tried to sell me an entire backyard design for 1k. If I used them for the pool they would apply the 1k towards the cost of the pool. If they didn't build the pool the designs were mine to pool shop. I kind of like that method because then you can compare apples to apples. I didn't buy the design though.

    Anyway last night we met with them and his design blew me away. He really knows how to design. The other pool designs were slapping a pool/deck in my yard with a couple differences here and there. This guy really designed the pool around my yard with two decks and a walkway in between. Plus since he is using some manmade paver stones to do my deck I can get a SWG pool which I am really excited about. The pool is 65k and I have to make a couple sacrifices like no LED lighting but I am getting SWG, pebble sheen, 2 skimmers. I don't know if he was feeding me with a bunch of hype but they use some interesting skimmers that have a extra pipe to them to cause more suction using return water from the pump. Also they design the return flow to push leaves/junk back into the skimmers. It seems like their commercial experience is being well used for their residential side. The deck is almost 900sq ft and the pool is almost 500sq ft. I fell in love so much with the design we are figuring out how to stretch our budget to get the extra 5k. Plus the deck and pool are much larger than the other quotes so I think the 5k extra in this design are worth it. I should be getting a break down of the quote and plan on posting it with the equipment to the site.

    I wish you well on your pool build. It is exciting to have someone in the same process in the same area. Perhaps we can compare notes.

  4. Back To Top    #4

    Join Date
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    Location
    Austin
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    Re: Looking for a builder in Austin

    Quote Originally Posted by ummgood View Post
    Hi there. We are also in SW Austin and are putting in a pool. We have had 4 pool builders out to our house and have gotten three bids. Our last house we wanted a pool but it just wasn't in the cards. The lot wasn't good for it (slope/easements) which caused all the pool quotes to be astronomical think 70k+ with just a pool and no features. I kinda hoped the desire would go away but it didn't so we ended up selling our house and moving 4 blocks to a house with a much bigger yard. Then right after we moved our van got totalled and we ended up having to get a new van with a new payment. (I know we could have bought used but we had a Odyssey before and with only 4 days to get a new one we couldn't find any used we liked) so we ended up resetting our payment and that put off the pool for awhile. Now here we are 18 months later and with the rate drop and appreciating house prices we are getting a pool for <100 extra month. We are so excited!

    I have had Innovative out to our old house and I know someone who used them. They are a in and out pool builder and you really have to stay on top of them. From what I understand the pool can be ok but for me I want a guarantee I won't have a big cracked shell in my yard in 10 years so I am going to spend a bit more up front. Also they have a F rating from Angies list which to me is a bad sign. I do have a coworker who used them and they are definitely a no frills builder and the attention to detail is low. If you don't have a complicated design and just want a basic pool they might work for you.

    We also had Cody, A&S, and a couple others out last time. In our last cul-de-sac we had 4 pools put in by neighbors and 3 were done by A&S and the 4th was done by Cody. The 3 A&S pool owners are extremely happy. They have also had good customer support for stuff like messing up the controller etc... The prices of those pools are all over the map. One was about a mid 30k small freeform pool with little frills, one is a large spa/pool combo for 70k+ with an outdoor bathroom/designer kitchen/bar area added (think huge like outdoor TV). The 3rd is a mid range 50k+ pool/spa. The Cody pool is a mess. The pool had major drainage issues and the first large rain we got they had a bunch of mud in their pool. They paid about 60k for the pool and were regretting it. I am not sure how Cody resolved the issue but the drainage in the yard is complicated and they didn't know what they were doing.

    Now fast forward to our new house. Our new next door neighbor has a Cascade pool which is pretty basic with a spa. Rectangular about 30x18ft with a spa. He got a deal because two people put in pools at the same time so they dropped the price a little. It was still pricey and the pool looks very basic with no pebble finish. The equipment is pretty good though and he has luders and basic tile for the coping/etc... with a fairly large sun deck.

    Based on this info we called 5 builders. A&S, Cascade, Athena, Millenium Pools, and Master Pools of Austin. A&S was the only one so far that is under our budget of 60k. The pool has about 460sq ft of sun deck with Oklahoma flag as accents. The pool is about 450sq ft 3->6ft natural pool. He did add a nice spa-like feature which has a half circle bench and margarita table and jets even though there is no separate spa. We really liked it. This included a single LED light, one skimmer, VS pump and Ozone. (I didn't read enough pool school yet before this quote). The plaster is their standard lifetime rock finish which is white (not too fond of it). The cost also included 2500 for a gas line for a grill which I would probably delete.

    The Cascade quote was close but had an extra skimmer. The pool was smaller and the deck was about 100sq ft larger. The designs were almost the same but with a bit more attention to detail. This included blue or grey pebble, ozone, auto fill, ozone, and a couple nice touches like a stacked flag wall to block the view of the pool equipment which brought the total to 65k.

    I haven't heard from Millenium on the quote. The thing that was weird is I felt he wasn't really listening to me. He is a small builder and makes amazing pools but he came in my yard and just started talking about what he would build without really asking what I want. I did like his ideas. The other strange thing is my lot is very large and has a lot of grade variations and he said he didn't have his equipment (which I told him on the phone it was a sloped yard) and he would be back in a day or so to measure. I don't know if he ever came or not but he hasn't called back and I pretty much figure he is really busy or not for me.

    Now comes Master Pools. They are fairly new but have an amazing showroom next to Jack Allen's. I called because frankly they are within a mile of my house and I like having a place I can go and complain if I need help. I asked how they got such a nice office for being so new but turns out they have a booming commercial business that does a lot of the prominent pools in Austin like JW Marriott, Seaholm tower, etc... Their commercial side is Atlantis Aquatic Group. Anyway I was impressed with the designer. They tried to sell me an entire backyard design for 1k. If I used them for the pool they would apply the 1k towards the cost of the pool. If they didn't build the pool the designs were mine to pool shop. I kind of like that method because then you can compare apples to apples. I didn't buy the design though.

    Anyway last night we met with them and his design blew me away. He really knows how to design. The other pool designs were slapping a pool/deck in my yard with a couple differences here and there. This guy really designed the pool around my yard with two decks and a walkway in between. Plus since he is using some manmade paver stones to do my deck I can get a SWG pool which I am really excited about. The pool is 65k and I have to make a couple sacrifices like no LED lighting but I am getting SWG, pebble sheen, 2 skimmers. I don't know if he was feeding me with a bunch of hype but they use some interesting skimmers that have a extra pipe to them to cause more suction using return water from the pump. Also they design the return flow to push leaves/junk back into the skimmers. It seems like their commercial experience is being well used for their residential side. The deck is almost 900sq ft and the pool is almost 500sq ft. I fell in love so much with the design we are figuring out how to stretch our budget to get the extra 5k. Plus the deck and pool are much larger than the other quotes so I think the 5k extra in this design are worth it. I should be getting a break down of the quote and plan on posting it with the equipment to the site.

    I wish you well on your pool build. It is exciting to have someone in the same process in the same area. Perhaps we can compare notes.
    So are you going with Master? I couldn't really tell from what you said. Also, who is A&S? Haven't heard of them.

  5. Back To Top    #5

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    Re: Looking for a builder in Austin

    I think so. I can message you more. A&S is Anthony and Sylvan.

  6. Back To Top    #6

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    Apr 2015
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    71

    Re: Looking for a builder in Austin

    We looked at cody, master pools and elite pools. We met with all three and cody came back with a pool and design that was a mess. It was nothing like we talked about. It was as though they did not listen to anything we told them. Master pools did come back with a really nice design and I know they have a lot of experience on the commercial side but was hesitant as they could not really provide any residential references more than a year or two old. We were really interested in talking with some to see how they were with warranty issues. Elite is who we ultimately went with as they had the best mix of references, long history with residential pools and came up with a great design at a reasonable price. We just completed the build and are filling the pool up today and we could not be happier. Give them a call. They do great work.

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