5 Things to Consider Before Building a Pool

Real Estate Law by Simon Offord, Esq.

As the heat of the summer continues across California, and temperatures start to creep into the triple digits, having a pool around sounds like a pretty swell option. In the privacy of your own property, you can take a dip to cool off from the sweltering heat, or lay out next to the pool and catch some rays. For those who are considering installing an in-ground pool on your property, however, there are some important real estate law-related things that you should keep in mind.

Here are 5 law-related things you should consider before installing a pool on your property:

 1. What do the local municipal codes and state requirements say?

Municipal Codes may have very specific requirements about constructing a pool, size, type, set-back requirements, etc.  Make sure your contractor understands with and complies with these rules.

2. Safety issues

Pools can be hazardous to children and adults alike.  Is a fence around the pool necessary or required by the local laws?  Does your insurance cover injuries that may occur in or around the pool?  Be sure you have reviewed and considered these issues before proceeding.

3. HOA Restrictions

Does your homeowner’s association have any specific rules regarding pools?  Are they even permitted?  If so, are there size or other restrictions/limitations?  Even if the City allows the pool, the last thing you need is a dispute with the HOA about the pool.

4. Easements and Space Restrictions

Do you have sufficient space to install a pool?  Are there any utility or other easements in your yard that prevent you from having a pool?  Are trees in the vicinity and will the pool impact (or be impacted by) tree roots?  A surveyor or arborist may be needed to analyze this issues for you, so do so early in the process.

5. Tax Implications

Will adding a pool constitute new construction that will impact your property taxes?  How much value does the pool add and how much higher may your taxes become?

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