backyard pool

Do I have the right yard for a pool?

Are you looking to spruce up your backyard with a pool, but you’re concerned about space, your needs and desires, and the unique qualities of your yard? You may be surprised at the amount of things you may need to consider. You may also be surprised to learn you have more options than you think and no, we’re not talking about inflatable above-ground pools. If you’re reading this you might be concerned about how small your yard is, where the ideal location for a pool may be, and what options there are for you, that you may not know about.

Consider Backyard Living Space for Starters

Adding a pool is more than just… adding a pool. A yard needs room to breathe. Space for greenery, furniture, and other recreational or relaxation activities is recommended and should be considered. Fire pit? Dining area? Lounge area? Bar? Even if you have a small yard, do not surrender all that precious real estate to your new splash zone. Plan well, maximize your backyard space, and be smart about the size of your pool. Think about how you will want to use your yard year-around and plan accordingly.

Is privacy a concern? Look around and assess the situation regarding your neighbors. Do you live in a noisy area? Add some water features to distract. Have a lot of greenery? Green space adds natural beauty to your yard. Trees, plants, and grass help cool and filter the air and are natural noise blockers too. Also think about foliage and debris that will end up in your pool if any greenery is nearby. There’s no need to manually clean that debris out of your pool! Check out the automatic pool cleaners that can do the work for you. Also, think about the areas where you would like sunlight and where you would like shade and make the necessary changes to your yard.

Your kids, pets, and guests will also appreciate any empty space for other needs, especially when the pool is not operational. Even if furniture wasn’t present before, it will be essential once your pool is up and running. We’re sure you wouldn’t want wet floors – or wet everything when guests step out of the pool and have nowhere else to go. Also consider the space that might be needed for safety measures like fencing – especially if you have children and pets.

Who’s Your Pool For?

Think of your family and potential guests, too. Whether you plan on having parties every weekend and have kids who are extremely active or if you’d simply like a new relaxation station or small swim spa for you and your partner, plan appropriately. You’ll need a few extras if you’re in the former camp and therefore, a larger yard. If in the latter scenario, a small inground pool or a small above ground pool may look awkward in a large, backyard space. Consider what’s best for your yard in addition to what you need and want.  

Analyzing Your Backyard For Placement

Keep in mind some essential pool surroundings and features as you think about placement. More elaborate decks or new patios, new landscaping, and new backyard amenities will likely take up more backyard space than the actual pool. Also consider the multitude of different designs and shapes your pool can take according to any restrictions your yard may have or the creativity you might want to unleash. Pools are more than just squares, rectangles, and circles these days.

You may want to ask yourself a few questions before landing on a spot for your pool. Is the potential spot flat enough? How much space is there to walk around? Did I check with my local government about installing a pool? Have I checked my survey plot? How will this affect greenery? Is this area prone to rainwater runoff?

Concerns about Small Yards and Pools

Most pool installers agree – almost no backyard is too small for a pool. Work closely with your pool designer and see if they’re able to create and add elements that will make your pool feel larger than it is. We suggest you research some examples online, in print magazines, or look through our Pinterest board! Get a feel for how they may look like and you may even get some inspiration to show your contractor. Do keep in mind that you might have to turn down extra features like slides, waterfalls, diving boards, and elaborate rock work if your pool isn’t big enough. Above all, remember, small pools are pools too!

Other Backyard Obstacles

Your pool’s placement, shape, and size could be influenced by your local zoning laws, any differences in elevation, and drainage considerations. Be sure to check with your local government about any potential backyard property rules before installing your pool such as certain buffers required between property lines and buildings. Make sure your contractor is in the know!

Remember that it rains sometimes! You might be stuck dreaming about sunny days, relaxing in your pool, but consider how rainwater might affect your new aquatic retreat. You will also need room for construction machinery to get by, some space for materials to be laid down before installation, and the appropriate yard conditions to host equipment (or, at least, knowing that you’ll need a landscaper after all is said and done). Almost ready to start digging? It’s not just dirt down there! Make sure to review your home’s survey plot or ask your realtor about any and all possible obstacles, such as: utility lines, water, hard rocks, etc.

As you can see, there are a few questions you should ask yourself first before starting construction. With some planning and the right yard conditions, your backyard will soon host the ultimate pool party or be home to the best self-care spot for you and those you love.

Thinking about building your first pool? Build your new pool at, and check out our social media sites: Instagram, Facebook, Houzz, Pinterest for inspiration.

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