As a prospective new home owner or one looking to sell your home, there are some important considerations to keep in mind if your home has a swimming pool.
- Install a pool safety fence.
Many people with young children are afraid of buying or even visiting a home with a swimming pool. This is because drowing is the largest single cause of accidental deaths in children under the age of 5. An infant or young child can die in less than 2 minutes and those that survive, can have debilitating injuries. It’s natural that parents are concerned about the risks involved by having their children near residential swimming pools.
Whether you have children of your own, expect guests with children or are looking to sell a property with a swimming pool, it is advisable to have a durable, high quality pool fence installed around the perimeter of the entire pool. One suggestion is to install a removable pool fence that is at least 4 feet in height and constructed of high quality mesh material with sturdy reinforced aluminum poles and stainless steel locks. A pool fence also can keep out pets from accidentally falling into a pool and can function as a pet fence, as well.
Having a safety pool fence installed can also attract more potential buyers for your home if you are looking to sell your property. Removable pool fences not only work great in keeping the kids out of the pool, they look great. The aesthetics around the pool are not compromised with the nearly transparent removable pool fence.
- Plan for higher insurance costs.
Insurance costs may be higher when you have a swimming pool. Pool fence costs may also be out of pocket expenses you will need to plan for. If you are a new home owner, aim to negotiate the pool fence cost as part of your deal in purchasing the home. Many insurance companies are very sensitive to policies that they write for homes with swimming pools. They even have mandated that home owners install pool fences before they are willing to underwrite the associated policy.
- Get a pool inspection.
It is important to get a pool inspection done by a certified pool inspector. This can help you figure out any concerns that lie with your pool from drainage and repairs to other issues. Also be aware that home inspectors are not pool inspectors. Your pool inspector may also offer recommendations for water safety tips and suggestions such as adding pool alarms or alarms on doors within the home that open out to the swimming pool area in order to alert you that a child, teenager, pet or adult has wandered out of the house and into the pool area.
- Check with your local municipality if a fence inspection is necessary.
State municipalities have varying requirements regarding swimming pools and pool fence use. In some areas, state municipalities require that an inspection of pool fences must be done before closing on a house with a pool. Requirements vary by state.
In most states including Pennsylvania, New Jersey, New York and Connecticut the minimum height requirement for a fence surrounding a pool must be greater than 4’ in height. However, the city, town, or municipality within these states may require a pool fence minimum height to be greater than the state’s minimum requirement. In addition to the height requirements for a pool fence each state establishes the maximum distances between the between the pool fence uprights, the height of the pool fence gate and the self-closing latch, and the distance the pool fence must be from the edge of the pool, and the direction the pool gate can open. Finally, before you construct your pool fence, a building inspector must approve the type of pool fence and the type of construction you will use. After building your pool fence, you will need to have it inspected to ensure that it meets the Pennsylvania swimming pool fence laws.
You can get a copy of the NJ, NY, CT and PA State Barrier Codes below:
NJ State Pool Barrier Code:
NY State Pool Barrier Code:
CT State Pool Barrier Code:
PA State Pool Barrier Code:
- Install a swimming pool cover.
Having a pool safety cover installed over your swimming pool will ensure that you can keep children and pets out of the swimming pool during the time the pool is not being used. Winter pool covers not only keep the children and pets safe around the pool, they also keep the pool clean. A well maintained and good fitting pool cover not only looks great it tells the prospective buyer that you care about your pool and want to keep the pool safe, and looking great for years to come. If you have an old dingy looking cover, you might consider replacing your pool cover with a new winter safety pool cover. Winter pool covers come in a variety of materials including solid pool covers, mesh pool covers, and the new super high density mesh pool cover. For more information on the cost of a pool cover simply call or email Pool Safety Systems for a free pool cover price estimate.