A backyard swimming pool is the ultimate backyard amenity for any homeowner. It provides a strong aesthetic element in the landscape, as well as lots of opportunities for family activities.

Since a swimming pool is a major expense, it’s important to give a lot of thought to design. For best results, remember that your pool is just part of your landscape design, but it takes up a lot of your backyard space. It’s best to hire a professional landscape architect to design your pool and a site plan that may include landscape features like a hot tub or spa, a pool house, a backyard pavilion, or a screened gazebo ma. Any of these backyard features will create a great place for relaxation, outdoor dining, family events, and backyard pool parties for the kids.

When choosing a design and materials for your pool, make sure that the size and shape of your pool fits the size and shape of your back yard. If it’s too small or too large, the rest of your backyard landscape will suffer. Without adequate space for trees, plants and flowers, your new pool may feel like a concrete desert oasis that’s not very appealing.

Most homeowners prefer gunite or concrete in-ground pools, because they offer the most design flexibility and last a long time. Gunite pools can be custom-built in any size and shape to fit any landscape requirements, but they are the most expensive type of pool to build and install. Fiberglass pools offer a cheaper alternative and come in a variety of pre-formed sizes and shapes. With a smooth pre-finished shell, they offer less maintenance and faster installation. Fiberglass pools can usually be installed in two to three weeks, compared to gunite and concrete pools that can take up to four months to complete.

When choosing pool materials, think about activities and maintenance. Materials for pool decks should be slip-resistant to prevent dangerous slip and fall injuries around the pool. Concrete, brick, and slip-resistant pavers and tiles are good options. For added safety, outdoor lighting around the pool will prevent accidents and provide swimming opportunities after dark.