This writing, I am going to concentrate on educating the consumer on how to not get caught in the trap of price comparison shopping only. Most of this will apply to purchasing an In Ground pool but some also applies to Above Ground purchasers too and this year I am seeing some trends that are somewhat disturbing so it is important for you the consumer to have as much knowledge as possible so you can make an informed decision because if you do, this pool will be an enjoyable expenditure for years to come. Make the wrong decision and you suffer and our industry suffers because someone didn’t educate you to the product correctly or sold you something that would not live up to your expectations.
First the caveats, at the time of the sales call ask to see a certificate of insurance and a copy of their licenses and follow up by checking to see if these are valid. Unfortunately, we are seeing some advertisers who say fully licensed and insured and they are not. Second, if you are getting more than one quotation for the job and there is a distinct price difference you should ask yourself why (if it sounds too good to be true?) and begin to compare what you are getting with each quote. I will give you an example as we run into this all the time; the lower price quote will get the person in the door, and may include a lower quality filter system, sand bottom instead of vermiculite, one skimmer and two returns vs. plumbing that meets the needs to the size of the pool etc. so compare both quotes. Sometimes the extras like stairs into the pool are addressed once they are in your backyard and not included in the lower priced original quote as well other items such as ladders and handrails and then your lower price now starts climbing. Also many times the excavation costs are not included in the original quote. Third, ask for references of previous work. Again, follow up with these references, this is just another layer of due diligence on your part to make sure the company lives up to their promises. The best point of reference is taking a look at their work, it’s also a great source for ideas, we have taken prospective customers to look at liners and pools regularly so a prospect can see what we do.
A long standing quote is that “Quality is remembered long after price is forgotten” author unknown, is very true and a quality built swimming pool will cost you less money in future years. These days it is important to distinguish the pitchy spiels from the real deals. A pool is a big investment and reputable builders want your buying experience to be enjoyable so they can form a long term relationship for years to come.
Keep it safe, remember this month is National Water Safety Month.