You’re ready to build a pool in your backyard, but don’t know how to choose the pool company that’s right for you. There are a lot of pool companies in the Phoenix area and choosing the pool builder that is right for you is an important decision. California Pools & Landscape has been a premier pool and backyard builder in the valley of the sun for over 30 years. As a licensed, insured and bonded general contractor in Arizona, we’ve completed more than 30,000 projects, all custom built to fulfill the dreams of our customers.
Building a pool is a very unique process with a lot of elements and different choices to be made. There are many factors to consider when selecting the pool builder that works best for you. By the end of this article, you’ll have a great understanding of how to choose the pool company that is right for you.
To start this process, there are two avenues to help you make an educated decision. First is using the resources that are readily available on the internet. There is a wealth of information available to you that can help you decide what companies meet your criteria. Once you’ve narrowed down your search to a handful of companies that you like, the second step is diving a little bit deeper with each pool company. This will involve additional research and in person visits to your top candidates. After you consider all of the factors that we list below, you will be able to decipher the pool company that best fits your needs.
Step 1: Research Pool Companies Online
When you’re ready to dive in and start researching pool companies online, the best place to start is looking at customer reviews.
Look Up Pool Company Reviews
When looking at pool companies reviews online, the best sites to start with are Yelp and Google. These sites are commonly used by customers and will give you a good gauge of how a company performs in its customers eyes. Pay close attention to how many reviews a company has and what kind of education you can get from those reviews.
Some questions you should look to answer might be:
- How is the company rated by its customers?
- How does the company treat its customers?
- Does the company communicate well during the entire process?
- Does the company address issues during construction?
- How do they respond to complaints?
- Do customers recommend the company?
Review Pool Company Websites
You can look at a company’s website to get a good feel of the company culture and the overall dynamics. This should help you see the type of the projects they offer and the scope of services that they can provide. You can often find learning centers, image galleries and customer testimonials as well. A company’s website will give you an early indication of whether or not a pool company will work for your project.
Research Companies on the ROC (Registrar of Contractors)
Another way you can do online research is through the Registrar of Contractors. The Registrar of Contractors is a licensing company that’s mandated by the state of Arizona. When you go to the Registrar of Contractors website, it’ll give you a lot of really pertinent and important information. Are they licensed to actually build you a pool? Are they licensed to do some of the other elements that you might want to do outside of a pool, like a fire feature or retaining walls?
General landscaping also needs a license from the Registrar of Contractors. Some of the other information you can get on the ROC is how long have they had those licenses, which will give you a good idea of how long they’ve been in business in the state of Arizona.
Look Up Companies on the BBB (Better Business Bureau)
Another great resource to use is the Better Business Bureau, or the BBB. The BBB gives you letter grades for how well a company is performing in the customer’s eyes. Those letter grades really give a good idea of how well a company takes care of their clients and their projects.
Does The Company Have Multiple Showrooms?
One of the last options to research online is whether or not a pool company has multiple showrooms. Showrooms are important because they will enable you to make more educated decisions on your backyard project. Figuring out if a company has a showroom close to you will really make the pool building process a more successful experience.
Step 2: In Person Deep Dive With Your Top Choices
Now that you’ve done all your research online, it’s time to narrow your search down to the pool companies that you feel that fit your needs. Here are a few factors to use to choose a winner among your top choices.
One of the most important aspects of picking a pool company is figuring out the company that can do the full scope of work for your project. Are you looking to do a small landscape project, a remodel, a pool with a spa, a structure, or a complete total-yard transformation? You want to find a pool company that is licensed to build the yard package you choose. Once you decide on the scope of your project, the real fun can begin with the design of your yard. Designing your ultimate backyard is very personal and what you need is a company that provides you enough resources in order to find things that really connect with you and your family’s decision on what you want the design to look like.
Building a pool in your backyard is a big job with a lot of phases. From your initial meeting, to your consultations, permitting, processing, construction and warranties all involve a lot of communication. When you’re looking at pool companies, you should find out how the salesperson in front of you or the project manager is going to operate. Once you buy a pool, how is communication going to be done? How will you be communicated with throughout the process? There are a lot of moving pieces and having open communication will make the process a lot easier on you.
Visiting The Showroom Nearest You
Figuring out if a company has a showroom close to you will really make the pool building process a more successful experience. At a showroom you can touch and feel materials you’re interested in. You can also meet with project managers, designers, make payments, or make changes on the fly.
Some questions you should look to answer might be:
- Do you like the products that are offered and displayed?
- Do they have friendly and helpful staff?
- Are they able to answer all of your questions?
The fun part is talking about design, but really your backyard is in for several weeks & months of construction. Construction is really the most vital portion of getting a new pool. Understanding how the pool shell is built, how the plumbing is installed, the equipment that they use and the standards of installation should all be considered when picking your pool company.
In construction, all pools are not built equally. The Registrar of Contractors has certain standards that are minimum standards that you have to apply by. A lot of pool companies exceed those standards by a good amount. You should ask about a company’s construction standards for:
- Shotcrete pool shell
- Steel Rebar
- Pool interior
- Pumps, Filters & Heaters
Buying from a pool company with higher standards might cost you more upfront, but is also likely to result in better longevity and enjoyment of your pool.
Warranty & Service
The warranty is another huge factor in considering a pool company. As we discussed in the construction phase, if you don’t build to extremely high standards, your warranty is probably going to suffer. So when you’re looking at pool companies, take a detailed look into the specifics of their warranty. Look at what is covered, exclusions, any fine print and fees that are associated. Warranties are really going to give you a good understanding of how quality the pool is and how well this company supports the products that they built.
Another thing to consider within warranty is how do they service that warranty? Do you call a 1-800 number to have somebody come out and service your pool equipment or something that’s gone wrong in the pool? Or do you have access to an in-house service warranty department?
As you continue through this process, another huge factor to consider is experience. How long has each company been in business? This provides you with the comfort level that you need when you’re putting so much of an investment into your property. That experience gives you an idea of what each pool company can and can’t do in certain municipalities.
Experience will also eliminate certain products that don’t work in a certain climate. If something fails or you have a lot of issues from a warranty and service perspective, a well-experienced company will eliminate that from their product offering.
Lastly and probably one of the more important aspects to consider in this process is financial stability. How do you determine the financial stability of a pool company? As a homeowner, does a pool company have the ability to provide financial options for you?
Do they have the ability to put a pool into your mortgage when you are buying a new home and wait for payment until the project is completed? Some lenders will require an escrow holdback in order to include the pool in your mortgage. A holdback is an earnest deposit telling the lender that the pool will be completed in a timely matter after you close on the home. Can the pool builder post this holdback on your behalf?
Lastly, does a pool company or its trade partners put a pre-lien on your home during phases of construction? This is an important aspect to consider. It not only tells you the financial stability of the company, but also gives you a good understanding of how a trade partner and a pool company interact together.
Finding The Right Pool Company For You
As you can see, there are a lot of factors to consider when choosing the pool company that’s right for you. Remember, a pool is a really big investment and you’re investing into your biggest investment, which is your house. Swimming pools are fun and if you choose a company that works best for you, this process will be an enjoyable one.
Choosing a reputable pool company with experience and high quality standards will ensure that your pool is being enjoyed for decades. At California Pools and Landscape we are a licensed, insured and bonded general contractor that will custom build your dream pool and backyard. To discover all of the possibilities for your project, be sure to explore our construction options.REQUEST AN ESTIMATE