Indoor swimming pools not only increase the value of your property, but they provide a new element of comfort and enjoyment to your home. If you entertain or have children, they’re a great way to come together and enjoy each other’s company.
At one time, the indoor pool cost was so exorbitant that it was considered too “luxury” for most homeowners. Today, the cost is still quite high, but it’s not too far out of reach. In this guide, I’ll walk through:
- Overall cost of an indoor pool
- Cost by size
- Cost by material
- Building the surrounding structure
- Other costs to consider
Cost Overview for Indoor Pools
Let me be clear for one second and say that there is no flat answer to how much it will cost to build your indoor pool. The price will vary based on the size of the pool, your home, and land, where you live, and how you plan to enclose it. There are also issues of proper ventilation and airflow to consider. These are the most expensive costs you’ll run into.
When you add all these costs up, you’re between $150,000 to $200,000 as the total cost to build an indoor pool.
This chart will help you understand the major expenses associated with building an indoor pool and how they add up.
|Structure around the pool||$80,000-120,000|
Now, keep in mind that your expenses do not have to run this high. If you already have a small space in your home that you think could accommodate an indoor pool, you could do this for much cheaper.
I have seen people put indoor pools in their garage using the existing structure and bypassing the dehumidification system altogether by leaving windows open and such. While I don’t recommend going this route because it’s always better to do things the right way.
Skipping the dehumidification can lead to moisture damage, mold, or worse down the road. Also, many local regulations and codes may require you to have proper ventilation.
Indoor Pool Cost by Size
The first thing you’ll likely think about is, “how big should the pool be?” You want it to be big enough to accommodate enough people and look luxurious in the room, but with each square foot comes an added cost.
The average cost to install a standard inground pool is $37,000, so I’m working with those numbers since the enclosure is the only thing that separates the indoor pool cost from the outdoor one.
The typical cost range for an inground pool ranges from $25,000 for a low-end pool to $60,000 for a high-end pool.
There’s also the factor of upgrades such as lighting, water features, and hot tubs. These are all possible even if you plan on enclosing the pool.
Now let’s talk about size. The standard indoor pool is around 8 x 15, so you can see that they’re smaller than the average outdoor pool. The type of material you use in the pool will also impact how much you spend. Regardless of material, expect $50-100 per square foot for your indoor pool. Here’s a chart to help you visualize these costs.
|Pool Size||Average Price Range|
|8 x 15||$10,000-$15,000|
|10 x 16||$14,000-$20,000|
|10 x 20||$18,000-$26,000|
|10 x 30||$27,000-$39,000|
|12 x 16||$17,000-$24,000|
|12 x 20||$21,000-$31,000|
|12 x 24||$26,000-$37,000|
You won’t likely be building a pool any larger than 12 x 24 inside your home. These are rough estimates of the cost, and as I said, these will vary dramatically based on the material you use as well.
Expense Breakdown for Indoor Pools
Now, let’s get a bit more specific about some of the costs you’ll run into with building the pool. The expense breakdown for building an indoor pool is much of the same as building one outdoors except the structural costs.
Once you’ve determined how large you want the pool to be, you can start thinking about materials. The type of material you use for your pool will not only impact how much it costs and how it looks but how well it lasts over time.
Now let’s talk about a concrete pool. These are the most expensive pools to own, not because they cost the most to build; they cost the most to maintain, and you have the highest risk of having something go wrong with this pool type.
Concrete pools will cost between $30,000 and $200,000 to build with most people paying around $60,000 for a 14 x 28 sized pool. Of course, the numbers I’m referencing here refer to outdoor standard pool costs, so you can likely reduce that cost by about $5,000 – $10,000 since your indoor pool will likely be a bit smaller.
Now, you’re probably saying – “that’s not too bad, and concrete pools look a lot better than fiberglass.” You’re right, but you have to factor in the added maintenance costs of concrete, gunite, or shotcrete; whichever you choose.
The average cost to maintain a concrete pool over a 10-year period is $27,000, and it’s the highest of any type.
Why is that?
First, concrete pools require more chemicals and power to keep them running and swimmable. Mold and algae buildup is much more serious with this material, so many pool owners need to acid wash their pool every few years to remove it.
Keep in mind that draining an indoor pool is not a simple task, so that maintenance cost is going to be much higher, considering you have your pool enclosed.
Gunite requires a 10-15 year replastering, which runs around $12,000 for the job. Plus, each time you acid wash the pool, you’re compromising the integrity of the structure, which can lead to cracking and further problems. The last thing you want is cracking of your indoor pool because that water damage can also cause structural issues with your home.
- Limitless customization options
- More aesthetically pleasing
- Moderate building cost
- Challenging to maintain
- Expensive maintenance
- High risk – high reward
The cost for building a fiberglass indoor pool will range from $18,000 – $65,000 based on the size and your location. Expect to pay as much as $4,000 over a 10-year period to maintain and keep it as well. Since the pool is enclosed, the costs might be a bit lower for you because you won’t be exposing it to as many of the elements.
The main reason there is such a discrepancy in cost is that it depends on how much of this you do yourself versus how much you hire out for. Some people can do some of the work themselves, which naturally lowers the overall price tag.
For example, you can buy a DIY installation kit for somewhere between $12,000 and $30,000. Here’s a quick breakdown of packages for fiberglass installations:
- DIY: $12,000 – $30,000
- Assisted (hire out dig, set, and fill): $20,000 – $45,000
- Standard Installation: $30,000 – $60,000
- Turn-Key Installation: $45,000 – $80,000
There are some pros and cons of fiberglass pools as well.
- Easier to clean and maintain than other options
- Smoother surface reduces algae buildup and requires less pH maintenance
- Installation is fast and simple
- Fewer options
- Not as visually appealing
Fiberglass pools are a cheap way to go. If you’re concerned about the budget of the project, you’ll want to go this route.
You might not be able to get that fancy waterfall feature you’ve always dreamed of, and you won’t have beautiful stone steps with built-in lights walking into your pool, but you’ll have the indoor pool, and it won’t break the bank.
The last indoor pool cost we’ll look at is for vinyl. These are affordable and run between $22,000 and $50,000 to build. The initial price is low but the cost of maintenance is more than fiberglass because you’ll need to replace the liner every decade.
The average cost to maintain a vinyl pool over a 10-year period is a little less than $13,000. This, of course, is a rough estimate, and your cost might be astronomically higher than that or even lower. I would stray to the lower side because you’re not exposing the liner to the elements.
When you’re keeping the temperature of the pool controlled all year, you’re putting less wear and tear on the pool’s structural integrity than someone who has it outside.
- Easy to install
- Liners come pre-made
- Easier to maintain than concrete
- May need to replace the liner
Building Your Pool Enclosure
Now we need to address the elephant in the room. You’ve got your pool cost all factored out, but now we have to talk about how you’ll turn your pool into an indoor pool. Some of you might already have the necessary space, and you’re simply trying to figure out how you’ll get a pool in there.
If you don’t have that luxury, you’ll need to build the pool and then enclose it. There are plenty of pre-fabricated enclosures that you can build onto the back or side of your home, and you mount them to the deck. This is the most affordable way to go, and these cost around $35 – $75 per square foot with labor and maintenance costs included.
You can expect to pay around $100,000 or more for the enclosure itself. This only includes the bones and not electrical, plumbing, masonry, or ventilation that you might want to build into the space. You’re unlikely to build an empty room without including a bathroom and other living spaces to enhance the pool area.
Other Costs to Consider
In addition to enclosing your indoor pool, there are plenty of other costs to factor in here as well. Let’s take a look at some of them.
It’s standard that most people who own a pool have some form of cover, but when you take the pool indoor, the cover takes on a new objective. When you have a pool in an enclosed space, moisture and evaporation are your enemies, and if you don’t cover the pool, the water will end up in the air around you.
Having an automatic cover is almost a requirement because you’re usually lacking space and trying to keep the appearance of the area as nice as possible. Many automatic covers are built into the structure, so you press a button, and they extend out from the base of the pool.
You’ll need a way to control the humidity in the room to prevent moisture damage to the structure. With this cost comes other factors like heating and cooling for your pool room. Do you plan on building this onto your existing central air system, or do you not have one?
These are all important factors to consider because I don’t recommend bypassing this step. You can expect to pay anywhere between $20,000 – $40,000 for the entire system depending on the size of the space.
Once again, taking the pool indoors adds a new element of surprise. The once warm pool getting hit with all this direct sun now has no sun and is cold as the overall bill for building the pool. You’ll need a heater, and most people opt for a natural gas or propane heater to keep the water temperature within a comfortable range.
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Do You Have the Budget?
Now that you’ve seen some rough estimates of how much it costs to build an indoor pool, how do you feel? You can expect to pay between $150,000 – $200,000 for your pool and keep in mind that the structure is where most of your costs will come in. Your cost will also vary slightly depending on your pool builder or general contractor.
It is possible to build your pool and enclose it later on, but just be aware of how time may impact the pool’s structural integrity so it might benefit you to do the job all at once.
Questions? Shoot us a message. Also be sure to check out our main inground pool cost breakdown.