New Pool Construction: What to Ask Your Houston Pool Builder

New Pool Construction: What to Ask Your Houston Pool Builder

Once you have an idea of what kind of pool you want, it’s time to look for a pool building company to make your dream a reality. But don’t just hire the first company that shows up on Google. As the future owner of a swimming pool, you owe it to yourself to know exactly what you’re getting into.

Make an informed decision about your swimming pool construction project. Here’s a few good questions to ask your pool builder before work starts. Click To Tweet

Swimming Pool Questions and Answers

Remember that the pool builder is working for you, and the final swimming pool will be a part of your home for the foreseeable future. Don’t be afraid to ask questions until you’re fully satisfied. Here are a few important questions to start with:

  1. Can they accommodate all your requests?
  2. Do they have a good reputation and good reviews?
  3. What plumbing, electrical, etc. needs will the finished pool have?
  4. What will the complete project cost?
  5. What warranties or insurance are available?
  6. What building materials will be used?
  7. What maintenance will the completed pool require?

1) Can They Accommodate All Your Requests?

You probably have an idea of the shape, size, custom features, etc. you want for your swimming pool. See how much your pool builder can create for you. Be prepared for the unexpected when it comes to new pool construction. You may have to scale your project down slightly if your original ideas are too expensive or complex, but don’t give up on your dream pool. Keep looking until you find a pool builder that can make your dream come true.

2) Do They Have a Good Reputation and Good Reviews?

Customer testimonials, while not necessarily a dealbreaker, can give you an idea of a pool builder’s community standing. Do they do quality work and offer good customer service? How often do their pools need repairs done? Ask around and look online to see what kind of company you’re hiring.

3) What Plumbing, Electrical, Etc. Needs Will the Finished Pool Have?

This partially depends on how many custom features you want to be included in or near your swimming pool. Make sure you know what kind of mechanics will be in the finished product. This will give you an idea of how frequently maintenance will be required and how much repairs can potentially cost you.

4) What Will the Complete Project Cost?

Don’t let yourself be surprised by the price. Before you sign the contract, make sure you know down to the penny how much your swimming pool project will cost. This may seem like a no-brainer, but you’d be surprised how often people rush into a project without considering the total cost. Make sure you know how much you’ll be spending.

Pro Tip: Don’t default to the pool builder with the lowest price. You may be getting a good deal on paper, but the lower cost may indicate the builder will cut corners elsewhere and leave you with a defective pool.

5) What Warranties or Insurance Are Available?

Whether due to damage or wear and tear from age, your swimming pool will need repairs from time to time. A reputable pool builder will offer insurance and limited repairs for your pool, though exact services will vary. Ask about future repairs and how much you can expect to pay for them.

6) What Building Materials Will Be Used?

The more durable the building materials in your pool, the fewer repairs it will need and the longer it will last. Ask for details on construction materials and additional costs for upgrading to more durable ones if necessary.

7) What Maintenance Will the Completed Pool Require?

Finally, make sure you know how to care for your pool when it’s finished. Will you have to regularly call in professional help for maintenance, or will the biggest chore be pulling bugs and loose leaves out of the water with a net? See how much time and money will go into keeping the pool functioning.

Creating Your Dream Pool for Houston Summers

Your swimming pool will add value to your home and provide hours of entertainment for years to come. You deserve the best. Before any construction begins, make sure to get swimming pool questions and answers from your pool builder.

Want to learn more about designing your dream pool? Join the conversation to speak with our professional pool designers!

New Pool Construction: How Long Will It Take to Install Your Inground Pool?

New Pool Construction: How Long Will It Take to Install Your Inground Pool?

You probably don’t want to wait too long to use your brand new pool. Rest assured that your construction team also wants to finish the job quickly to move on to other work! Exact times can vary greatly, but your pool should be completed reasonably fast.

Wondering why your pool construction is taking so long? Here’s what you need to know about inground pool design and installation. Click To Tweet

For a no-complications pool building project, you can expect to wait about 6-8 weeks. Of course, delays will happen. Multiple problems can add days or weeks to your waiting time. Here’s everything you need to consider when it comes to installing an inground pool.

Custom Features

That waterfall will look amazing when it’s completed, but it will probably add an extra few days to your pool installation. The more custom features you want, the longer construction will take. As you customize your pool to your heart’s content, prepare yourself to wait a little longer.

Pro Tip: Don’t make changes to your pool design once construction starts. The builders may have to undo some progress to add in your new ideas, consuming yet more time.

Inclement Weather

Unpredictable Houston weather could cost your pool builders valuable construction time if constant rain or overwhelming heat makes it impossible to work. There isn’t really a good way to solve this problem. Your best bet is just to wait for the weather to improve so work can resume.

Building Material Delays

Finally, sometimes a material supplier won’t ship the necessary tiles, concrete, or other necessities in time, leading to a delay on your pool project. Your pool builders might be able to speed up the delivery if this happens, but chances are, you’ll just have to wait a little longer. You may be tempted to go to the hardware store and try to continue the work yourself, but don’t do that! When the materials arrive, having a weak spot in your new pool will just lead to disaster later.

Anticipating Your New Inground Pool

Delays can be frustrating, especially when they’re out of your control. Just remember that you can reduce some of the most common delays by choosing easily shipped building materials and a good time of year for the construction. While unexpected problems might still occur, at the very least you can reduce them.

Excited for your new pool? Connect with us and see what the finished product will look like!

New Pool Construction: Dig Day Expectations

New Pool Construction: Dig Day Expectations

You finally put down the money on that new pool you’ve been dreaming of! Once you’ve finished designing it and adding all the design features you’ve always wanted, it’s time to start construction. Day one of your pool construction project will consist entirely of excavating your new pool’s construction site.

Excavation seems simple enough, but there’s plenty of factors to consider as the day nears. Make sure your backyard is prepared for the pool building traffic and potential problems that may arise during the project.

Get ready to build your custom designed swimming pool! Here’s what to expect during excavation. Click To Tweet

Identify Potential Hazards in Your Backyard

Make sure your pool builders locate and clearly mark anything that you know will get in the way of digging, such as water pipes or buried electrical cables. A reputable pool designer will understand the importance of this. However, be prepared to address other problems that aren’t so easily identified at first. For example, if the construction crew hits bedrock, a large boulder, or a shallow water table, construction may be slowed as the problem is dealt with or your pool’s location changes. You may have to accommodate delays or additional expenses resulting from inevitable problems like these.

Protect Your Backyard

A major construction project like a pool means a lot of people and machines will be in and out of your yard all day. To prevent damage to your backyard, make sure to move small decorations like bird baths to a safe location like your garage. Ask if you should remove part of your fence so construction vehicles can get in easily. Most importantly, consider how to protect unmovable features like an outdoor kitchen. Trustworthy pool contractors should already have a plan to protect your kitchen, but never forget to ask if there’s anything you can do as well. You don’t want to ruin one backyard landmark for the sake of a new one.

Pro Tip: Your grass will inevitably get trampled during a pool construction project. Make sure to buy some new sod when the work is done.

Decide What to Do with the Dirt

Regardless of how big your pool is, you’ll end up with a lot of excavated soil. Most swimming pool builders will let you choose to either pay a little extra to have the dirt hauled away or keep it for yourself at no extra charge. Keeping the dirt allows you to add a hill in your backyard and provide an elevated space for a cool feature like a firepit to overlook your new pool. On the other hand, paying a little more to get rid of the dirt forever cleans up your backyard that much faster. Whatever you ultimately decide, make sure your pool contractor can accommodate you.

Get Ready for the Next Step!

A typical pool excavation normally takes a full day and may expand to two or three with work complications. Once the digging is finished, it’s time to start on reinforcement and plumbing! The best way to prepare for this is to keep the new gaping hole in your backyard clean and easily accessible. Don’t rebuild your fence or install anything else until the construction is fully finished. Most importantly, don’t go into the hole yourself–without the structural reinforcement from further construction, the dirt could still collapse.

Preparing for Dig Day

You’re most likely excited about your new custom pool and increased outdoor time! Although the design and construction phase will not be as fun, your new pool will be worth it. The best way you can help is to make the contractor’s job as easy as possible. The faster they can work, the faster you get your new pool!

Interested in reading more about the pool construction process? Connect with us and see how to get started.

Your Guide to Outdoor Room Construction

Your Guide to Outdoor Room Construction

Adding an outdoor room is the perfect way to give your outdoor living space much-needed shade, a comfortable seating area, or dining spot for your outdoor kitchen. Knowing how to prepare is an important element in making sure the construction process goes on without a hitch. Click To Tweet

Getting Ready for An Outdoor Room Construction

So you’ve decided to have an outdoor room constructed. You might be excited but wondering the best way to prepare. While your design team will help prepare you (and do most of the prep work), there are some basics that many people forget about. Follow this guide to getting ready for the construction process.

Learn the Schedule

Make sure to learn the construction schedule. What days will they be working, and which hours of the day? Make sure to coordinate potentially disruptive stages and plan accordingly.

Alarm Codes & Keys

Make sure to provide contractors with the proper alarm codes and keys to effortlessly gain access to the backyard and any other areas they might need to get to.

Worksite Safety

A worksite is a dangerous place and it is important that if you are on site that you wear proper safety protection to prevent injuries and accidents.

Pets & Children

A construction site is no place for children or pets to run around. Make sure to keep little ones and four-legged friends out of the construction site.

Parking Availability

Make sure that those working in your new outdoor room have enough parking available at the times they need it. Move your cars in order to make space for their vehicles while loading and unloading supplies.

Do You Part

Before the construction begins, make sure to pick up any debris in the area that is having work done. Cover or remove any outdoor furniture and move any plants or containers that might get in the way.

Your Perfect Outdoor Room Construction

By following these above tips, your outdoor room construction will come together perfectly. Make sure to communicate regularly with your outdoor living company and you’ll be enjoying your newly constructed outdoor room in no time!

To learn more about the best way to prepare for outdoor room construction, Contact Us.

Arbors, Pergolas, Cabanas and Patio Covers: What’s the Difference?

Arbors, Pergolas, Cabanas and Patio Covers: What’s the Difference?

These four common outdoor structures – arbors, pergolas, cabanas and patio covers – are all elements that can take an outdoor living space to the next level. But what’s the difference? Is there a difference?

The answer is a resounding, yes! We’ll explore each of these structures so you can decide which one is the best fit for your style and space.

Arbors

A Long Houston Arbor

An arbor is a simple, usually small, free-standing structure designed to provide shade and add a special touch to a backyard, walkway or front entry.

They are popular additions to an outdoor living space because of their versatility, customizable design and low maintenance upkeep.

Arbors are often used to provide support for climbing plants on trellises or lattices, but can be elegantly designed as a stand-alone element. Seating can be incorporated into the design to create an inviting backyard hideaway with protection from the summer sun.

A variety of materials can be used to create an arbor, with the most popular being wood, rust-proof iron and durable P.V.C. plastic.

Pergolas

Creekstone Outdoor Living - Custom Houston Pergola

Pergolas are often confused with arbors as they can share similar features such as lattices. They are actually vastly different structures with entirely different uses.

Pergolas are larger structures with more advanced architectural design features. They are supported by wooden or stone columns, and are often attached to an existing home or structure although they can be freestanding.

The roof is traditionally an open grid constructed of wooden beams to allow natural light to reach the space below. The beams can be covered with a clear or tinted polycarbonate roof for extra protection from the elements.

A pergola attached to an existing home extends the living space outdoors and can set the stage for further additions such as an outdoor kitchen or seating areas. In a garden setting, a pergola can be partially enclosed with lattice to allow plants to climb up to the roof creating a cozy, private outdoor retreat.

Common materials used to build pergolas are wood and stone or brick. Materials can be chosen to coordinate with existing structures on a property.

Cabanas

Custom Outdoor Kitchen and Cabana - Aerial View by Creekstone Outdoor Living in Houston Texas

Cabanas are free-standing, covered structures that can add functionality and comfort to any outdoor living space. They can be designed to simply cover a cozy nook for outdoor dining or as an extravagant addition to a pool area complete with an outdoor kitchen, changing rooms and storage space.

Lighting accents, ceiling fans and heating elements can be added to enhance the beauty and value of a cabana.

Since cabanas are freestanding, think of them as an additional room that accentuates an existing home. With that in mind, the addition of a cabana will increase the value of a property by boosting the amount of functional space.

The materials used in the construction of a cabana can be chosen to match an existing home or be constructed out of different materials to make a statement in a backyard oasis. Large beams and elegant stained wood ceilings are common elements of a cabana and add a distinctive flair.

Patio Covers

Creekstone Outdoor Living - Houston Patio Cover

Patio covers are a practical, easy way to enhance and add value to your home, and make the most out of your outdoor living space. As an attached structure, they are designed to compliment a home’s style and can include a variety of upgrades like screened windows, ceiling fans and lighting accents.

Much like cabanas, patio covers extend an outdoor living space into the backyard. But since they are attached to an existing structure, that extension is merely a step or two outside the back door.

Patio covers are an excellent addition for small spaces or for those looking to add protection from the elements to an already existing patio. They protect against the sweltering summer sun and spring rain showers, and with proper placement a patio cover can keep a home cooler during the summer by blocking the sun from south-facing windows.

An addition to an existing patio that incorporates an outdoor kitchen, fireplace or seating area can be greatly enhanced by the construction of a patio cover. By collaborating with a pool company, a patio cover can extend to the edge of a new pool, providing the perfect setting for a covered swim-up bar.

All four of these structures are designed to add functionality, style and value to a home. From a quiet mini-retreat under an arbor to a luxurious fully-featured cabana at the edge of a property, an outdoor living space can easily be transformed into private oasis with the addition of any of these elements.

Why Visit Your Design Studio and Retail Store in Person?

Why Visit Your Design Studio and Retail Store in Person?

Ever since e-commerce or online shopping became a popular trend among millions of people worldwide, there are only a select few who like to purchase their stuff from physical stores. However, when we were asked, “Why homeowners should visit their design firm and purchase products for their projects in person?”, we had 8 credible reasons to answer that question. So we thought why not share those reasons with our audience?

Here are the top 8 reasons to visit your design studio and retail store before making a move on your home project:

1. You Know What You Are Buying

Shopping online can be much less of a hassle since everything is happening through the might of the internet. But can you really trust online retailers? According to this article, a lot of scammers are online too, waiting to “fool around” and loot unsuspecting individuals . You don’t want that, do you?

Buying products locally that are essential for your home project is always a good option since you are aware of what you are buying, which means you never get ripped off. In simple words, you actually know what you are buying because you can get your hands on the product before purchasing it. Most online retailers don’t upload original photos because their products are not as good as they claim them to be.

2. Negotiation Becomes Possible in Person

Have you ever tried to negotiate your way out of something online? Did it work? We are certain that it didn’t. If it did, you probably should seek a sales job because you’ve got great persuasive skills! For most people, negotiating online is useless. But once you visit a retail store or your design firm in person, you can easily lower the price down and purchase the required goods at a very affordable price.

So why is negotiation mostly effective in person? Because most online design studios or retail stores are not in contact with distributors. They purchase the products at wholesale prices and then sell them up in equal amounts that local retailers offer. But since local design firms and retail stores buy their equipment, materials and products from distributors and manufacturers, they can lower their retail prices drastically, hence, allowing you to negotiate and get some discount on their products.

3. Get to Know Them Better and Avoid Nut Jobs

There are a plethora of design studios and home equipment retailers but only a few of them really care about their customers and offer reasonably good products and services. You cannot know for sure if someone actually has what it takes to finish your project. After all, you don’t want to pay thousands of dollars only to have it botched up on a grand scale, do you?

As human beings, our instincts are honed to better judge someone in person. Visiting your design firm and retailers makes it easier for you to see if they are up for the task or not. Since most online design firms and retailers aren’t registered and don’t have a physical address – you can’t know if those online individuals are equipped with extensive experience or if they are even licensed to offer their services.

4. Discussing Matters Becomes Easier too

Neglecting to pay a visit at your design firm is always a bad move since you cannot rely on ‘phone talk’ alone. Talking on the phone can create misunderstandings which can lead to either unexpected and deeply dissatisfying results.

Once you take the time to meet with a representative from your design firm, it becomes very easy to communicate and clearly articulate project details and your expectations. The same can be said for retail stores.; if you want to avoid miscommunication, it’s better to get yourself up and moving.

5. Allows You to See Their Work in Real-Time

Everybody loves to see a house that has been designed and decorated by the design firm itself. While most home design and remodeling firms offer you to see their portfolio which includes plethora of design ideas and photos, you should visit their physical location to have a better idea of their expertise. Visiting a design studio and taking a walk with one of their representatives will allow you to see their work firsthand so you can be certain that this is the firm you want to hand over the project to.

6. The Design Studio Gets to Know Your Needs Better

If you desire to give an utterly pleasing and appealing look to your house, you need to get your design firm to physically see your house. Knowledge alone isn’t everything. Having the design studio to take a look at your home would allow them to know exactly how you have reimagined it. It becomes very hard for design firms to give your house an exemplary appearance without physically taking a glimpse of first.

7. Choose from a Variety of Products and Materials

While online shopping is convenient, you won’t find the same plethora of options as you do at your design studio’s retail outlet. When you visit a retail store, you have a variety of products that you can opt for. A much wider range of options, lets you decide what’s best for your home design project. For many people, visiting a retail store opens up their mind to new possibilities and allows them to brainstorm different design ideas once they see the rich variety of materials and equipment that can be used in their project.

8. Better and More Personalized Customer Service

Everyone wants to be treated with an appropriate level of respect and courtesy, and this especially rings true in terms of customer service, which is something that’s not attainable online. You need to visit your design studio’s retail store in person in order to experience great customer service.

The representatives will also give you genuine advice on products and materials that would be perfect for your home project. Meeting with a design firm will allow their representatives to propose plenty of design ideas which will better aid you in purchase making decisions.
Final Words
While the idea of conveniently ordering things online from the comfort of your bed or living room may seem very appealing, you might be in for some troublesome issues which can leave your home design project in bad shape.

Visiting your design firm’s retail store allows you to get to know the actual driving force behind the product and services offered, and see to it that they do the job as you expect.

SPEAK WITH A DESIGNER

Meet with your design experts to find the perfect style and fit for your ourtdoor space.

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