Pool House Cost Breakdown

Written by Michael Dean
January 10, 2024

pool house next to a swimming pool

A pool house is an excellent addition to any backyard, providing a comfortable and convenient space for your friends and family. However, building a pool house can be a significant investment, and it’s essential to understand the costs involved before taking on this big project.

In this article, I will explore the different types of pool houses and their costs and factors that influence the cost of building a pool house.

Main Takeaways

  • Pool houses can cost anywhere between $5,000 to $180,000, depending on what type of pool house you build.
  • Pool houses can be DIY, prefab, or professionally installed and can be a storage shed, changing room, bar, guest suite, etc.
  • Cost depends on factors such as size, design, location, site preparation, materials used, permits, and labor.
  • To stick within your budget, plan ahead, opt for a smaller pool house, use standard-grade materials, and keep the design simple.

Types of Pool Houses And How Much They Cost

The type of pool house you build will play a significant role in determining the cost of the project.

Storage Shed

A storage shed pool house provides space for pool equipment to be stashed and is useful as a dedicated area that keeps your equipment and chemicals safe and dry. It can range from $5,000 to $15,000 to build, making it the cheapest type of pool house since it’s much smaller and easier to build.

Changing Room

A pool house with changing rooms is relatively small and is one of the most common types of pool houses. Changing room pool houses typically include useful features such as showers, toilets, and racks or shelves for storing clothes. The cost for a basic changing room/bathroom pool house can range from $5,000 to $30,000, depending on factors such as size and materials used.

Bar and Kitchen

A pool house with a bar or kitchen is an excellent option for entertainment and socializing and can cost upwards of $20,000 to $120,000. This is undoubtedly a wide range, but that’s because it depends on the features you install and how big the pool house is.

Guest Suite

A pool house with a guest suite can add a lot of value to your home. This includes separate living quarters for guests, providing a private and comfortable space for them to stay. You can expect this type of pool house to cost upwards of $70,000 to $180,000.

Multi-Functional Pool House

Some pool houses are designed to serve as a complete living space, combining features such as washrooms, storage, lounging space, or a bar area in a single structure. This is the most expensive option—costing roughly $100,000 to $180,000 or more.

Cost of DIY vs. Prefab Pool Houses vs. Professional Installation

There are three different routes to take when building a pool house: DIY, prefabricated, or professional. Here are the costs associated with each:

DIY Installation

The cost of DIY installation depends on the materials chosen, the size and complexity of the design, and the level of customization. However, as a general rule, you can expect to save anywhere between 30-60% of the costs when DIY-installing your pool house.

Although you can save a lot of money, if you do not have specific DIY or construction experience, it’s best to leave this job to the professionals. You must consider the permits, materials, equipment, and tools needed for the project. Furthermore, you must coordinate subcontractors for specialized tasks, such as electrical or plumbing work. You must also comply with any local building regulations, and paperwork can be a real handful.

All in all, DIY can be an excellent option for those with hefty expertise in construction, assembly, landscaping, and engineering since, along with saving you money, you’ll have complete control over the project.

Prefabricated Pool House

Pricing depends heavily on the manufacturer—there are prefabricated components, transportation to the installation site, and assembly charges to consider. Prefab pool houses are meant to be quick and easy to install, with parts pre-manufactured in the factory for swift on-site assembly.

A downside is that prefab pool houses typically come in standardized designs and sizes, which may limit the level of customization. But there is still a range of available designs, so you should still be able to find something that suits your tastes.

On average, costs for prefab pool houses can range from $5,000 to $45,000, with an average of around $26,000.

Professional Installation

Professional installation typically involves hiring a contractor or a team of professionals experienced in pool house installation and can handle all aspects of the construction, down to the nitty-gritty of permit applications and site preparation.

Custom-built professional installation offers peace of mind. The contractor or professionals will have the necessary equipment and expertise to ensure a high-quality installation while ensuring the pool house is built exactly as you envision it. Charges can vary depending on the contractor’s quote, but you can expect it to cost roughly $160 to $600 per square foot. So, costs can range from $24,000 to $180,000.

Cost Factors

Here are the different factors that will affect the total cost of building a pool house:

Size and Design

First and foremost, the size and complexity of your pool house design matter. Larger pool houses with complex, customized designs mean more materials, labor, and time required, which also means more money spent. On the other hand, a smaller and simpler pool house will cost much less.

Location and Site Preparation

The location of your pool house on your property and any additional site preparation required can also affect the budget. For example, if the site needs to be leveled or trees removed, this can add to the overall labor cost.

Materials Used

The type of materials used for roofing, walls, flooring, windows, doors, and finishes will all impact the overall cost.

Permits and Licenses

Permits, fees, inspections, and other regulatory requirements for construction can vary by location and add to the overall cost of building a pool house.

Labor and Contractor Fees

Hiring experienced contractors or laborers for design, construction, plumbing, electrical, and other work will come with associated costs based on their expertise, experience, and market rates.

Miscellaneous Expenses

Miscellaneous expenses such as landscaping, painting, furnishings, and decor should also be considered when estimating the total cost of a pool house.

How to Save Money When Building a Pool House

Building a pool house can be a significant investment, but there are several ways to reduce costs without compromising quality.

Opt for a Smaller Pool House

The size of your pool house will significantly impact the overall cost. Consider your needs and prioritize essential elements to keep the design functional and efficient, opting for a smaller pool house if you want to reduce costs.

Keep it Simple

Complex designs increase construction costs. Going for a more basic design can help save money on materials, labor, and construction time. Avoid unnecessary frills or extravagant finishes that drive up the budget. If you really want to save money, consider getting a prefabricated pool house.


If you have construction skills and experience, consider tackling some of the work yourself. DIY can save on labor costs. However, it’s important to be realistic about your capabilities and consider the complexity of the project.

Compare Multiple Quotes

Get quotes from several reputable contractors and compare them. Look for cost-saving opportunities and value-added services. Remember: the cheapest quote may not always result in the best quality, so consider the contractors’ reputation and references as well.

Use Cost-Effective Materials

The choice of materials can significantly impact the cost of construction. Opt for cost-effective materials or explore alternative options to achieve your desired pool house features while saving money. For example, instead of custom-built cabinetry, you can install pre-made cabinets or get a kitchenette instead of a full-scale kitchen. 

Some homers even go as far as to build their pool houses out of shipping containers, reclaimed wood, corrugated metal, or other cost-effective materials.

Plan Ahead

Changes made during construction can add high costs to the overall project. This can be avoided by thoroughly planning ahead, working closely with your contractor, and making all design decisions before construction begins. Spend time visualizing what the pool house will look like to ensure you are happy with it once completed.

Need Help Building Your Pool?

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Frequently Asked Questions

What is the average size of a pool house?

A typical size for a pool house can range from 100 – 600 square feet, which is influenced by local building codes, budget, and the available space on your property.

Is building a pool house a good investment?

In short, yes. A pool house can make for a decent investment. If it’s properly designed and well-built, it becomes an attractive selling point that could enhance the value of your home. However, a prefab pool house may not necessarily be a good investment if it’s not a permanent part of your property.

Questions about pool houses or other costs? Let me know; I am always happy to help.

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