Before we get started, please understand that this answer varies by season, region and pool builder. Asking how long does it take to build a pool is a valid yet loaded question. In this article, we’ll explain how these three factors (season, region, builder) can drastically change a timeline. We will also suggest a fair range to expect your pool to be built inside.
When all else fails, it never hurts to ask a local builder for their current timeline. After all, builders time to build a pool is constantly changing. In addition to requesting quotes, it’s not a bad idea to ask each pool builder the question: how long does it take to build a pool?
Our staff has had the privilege of working in many pool regions year-round for many different pool builders. We have observed pools being built in 6 weeks and we have also seen pools take 6 months. To make matters even more confusing, currently pool builders are seeing a shockingly amount of demand coupled with the worst supply chain constraints in over 50 years. Hence why we can only offer a range.
Factors That Affect Pool Building
- Competition of pool builders in the market
- Status of supply chain
- Level of customer demand
- Labor shortages/surplus
- Distance from builder’s warehouse
- Deck and masonry differences of region
- Adjoining construction
How Long Does It Take To Build a Pool Without Waiting?
If you were not accounting for any downtime or waiting process, the solid work of building a pool would only take 3-4 weeks. One of the biggest delays in getting a pool built and ready to swim is the curing process. When you hear “curing”, think waiting. A gunite pool needs 28 days between when the concrete is sprayed and when the pool is plastered.
Why Asking “How Long Does It Take To Build a Pool” Depends On Region
Different regions of the country use different materials and have different levels of competition. Therefore, the timeline for building a pool varies widely from state to state. For example, in Phoenix, it is not uncommon for a pool to be built start to finish in 6 weeks.
Surely pools can’t vary that much in construction, right? Wrong – a pool in Florida might look the same as a pool in New York, but under the surface, they only have a few things in common. Every gunite pool starts the exact same. First comes excavation, second is plumbing, then steel and finally, gunite. It is after the gunite phase that the similarities end.
Decking and Masonry
The biggest variables of pools across the country are the decking and masonry phases. For example, in New England, there’s lots of masonry work put into pools such as bluestone coping/tile and retaining walls. These things take time to complete the pool. In warmer climates, retaining walls are less common and coping/tile are quick operations.
Decking is where arguably the biggest time difference is witnessed. In Phoenix, a poured deck can get the phase finished in 2 days versus in Boston, that phase could take 2 weeks. Of course, a noticeable difference in time between phases is felt when subcontractors are involved versus a builder’s own employees.
In a rural area of Tennessee, you might have 2-4 pool builders to choose from. In Arizona, you might have 200 – 400 pool builders available. The level of competition in your particular market has a heavy impact on answering our starter question of how long does it take to build a pool? Best said by pool designer Scott Pancake, “In a highly competitive market, efficiency is rewarded.”
In markets that are more competitive (down south), pools are generally built quicker. Big delays hurt reputations and there’s always another pool builder around the corner ready to step up. Larger markets are also where you’ll receive the best customer service. When a pool builder knows that they don’t need to worry about competition, they can over-promise and underdeliver.
Seasons and Weather
In most markets, the time of year that you start a pool is a major factor. If you live in New York and have the bright idea of wanting a pool in December, you’re going to be waiting 3-4 months (at least) until construction starts. Whereas, in the same region, if you request that same pool in July, your pool could be done in 3-4 months.
The same concept is true for once construction starts. Good weather is required to build pools. If you happen to start building your pool and then 3 weeks of non stop rain downpours, your pool is going to take much longer than if you have ideal conditions. Not only would you lose 3 weeks, but your setup (excavation, plumbing, steel) might be messed up in the process. Brace yourself if you’re in Louisiana, the rainiest state in the country.
Adjoining work, such as home construction, can delay pool building further. If the pool builder has to wait to access the backyard or needs to communicate things with a general contractor every step of the way, you’ll notice a slowdown. Many homeowners purchase a lot of land and expect their new home and pool to be built at the same time, but that’s not always possible.
Proximity To Pool Builder
This one might shock you, but being close to your pool builder’s warehouse and day-to-day operations is helpful for getting a pool built faster. If a pool builder has to travel far out of their “area” to build your pool, expect delays.
The reason being, pool phases often don’t require a full day every time. Therefore, pool builders often double up by working on two job sites in one day. When your home is not dense to their operations, you miss out on them dropping by and getting something done because another job finished early. And not to mention, they may even be more selective about sending their crews out to your backyard.
Bottom Line on How Long Does It Take To Build a Pool?
There you have it, understanding a pool’s timeline is no easy matter. It depends on a lot of factors, many of which are out of your control entirely. However, we hope that you learned some new things reading this article and can understand why some pools take longer than others. While you’re doing your pool research, we also recommend understanding how much a pool costs. In addition to timelines, pool prices are also rising these days.