So you’ve taken the plunge and decided to install an inground pool – congratulations! But now the real work begins before you’re able to relax poolside with a refreshing drink. Placement of your pool will be one of your first major decisions – and it should be treated as such. Getting it wrong could lead to years of regret. You’ll need to ask yourself important questions such as, “How far should inground pool be from house?” “Where will the pool get the most sun?” “What distance does the pool need to be from the property lines?” and “What about gas and electricity lines?” To answer these questions and more, we provide this article.
How Far Should an Inground Pool Be from The House?
Choosing the distance the pool needs to be from your house depends a lot on what your local regulations stipulate. Building codes regulate what’s known as a setback, which is the measure of separation between the swimming pool, your house, and the property lines. Setback distances vary from neighbourhood to neighbourhood and could range from a metre or two to 15 metres or more. Many factors can affect the size of the setback such as septic fields, protected areas, the average size of the neighbouring tracts, and more. You’ll need to consult with your local zoning office to find out the exact measurements for your address. Easements are something else you’ll need to be aware of. Easements are parts of your property on which you’re not allowed to build. There are utility easements, drainage easements, right of way easements and, more recently, conservation and scenic easements. Look at your property survey or query the permit office about any easements you need to be aware of. It’s important not to neglect these steps as getting it wrong could end up with you being fined and needing to move the swimming pool – not a simple task.
If your pool is quite a way away from your house, you might need to consider installing a dedicated water tap. If the pool is close enough, your everyday garden hose will be fine. You’ll also need to set up gas and/or electricity lines to power your water pump and heater. A dedicated electrical circuit originating from the electrical panel in your house and running to your pump and heater is a must. If you’re using gas to heat your pool, you’ll also need to install a gas line running from your house. The cost of installing all these utility lines increases the longer they get. At the same time, you’ll need to be aware that your water pump and heater will not run silently. This means you don’t want them so close to any dwellings that they’ll disturb you or your neighbours.
The more sunshine your pool gets, the less you’ll have to pay to heat the water – and the more you’ll enjoy lounging beside the pool. Make sure to consciously analyze the path of the sun as it passes over your desired pool location throughout the day. Consider your trees or other structures, including your house, that will cast a shadow over the planned pool area. The more sun the better, but you’ll want your pool to be exposed to at least four to six hours of sunlight a day. If you have a lot of leaf shedding trees you should try and keep your pool at least 15 metres away or you’ll be spending all your time skimming the pool and rebalancing the water chemistry. You might even consider removing trees if they’re going to pose a big problem.
Most municipalities will require a fence of a certain height to surround your pool. If close enough, the back of your house can act as one side of that fence. Again, consult with the permit or zoning office to find out the exact regulations that govern your neighbourhood.
To find out more about backyard inground pools, download our free Backyard Escape Guide here.