A private outdoor swimming pool is more than just a fun place to swim and relax; it is also an essential part of living to help avoid the excessive Australian summer heat. Properly supervised, young children can swim in a safer environment than at beaches or waterholes. These factors alone make having a private pool desirable, however did you know that effective pool landscaping can also boost the price of your home?
The great Australian tradition of hosting barbecues and partying outdoors lends itself to a well-designed pool area. Indeed, 2014 data issued by property information site realestate.com.au showed that a backyard pool was the most desired feature looked for by house hunters and renters. Adding a pool and landscaping, therefore, makes excellent sense if you are looking to boost the value of your property.
However, there’s a right and wrong way to go about making your backyard pool the centrepiece of your landscaping. Here are a few points that should be considered to help you carry out a successful pool landscaping project.
Plan correctly and carefully
There are many things to assess before designing the backyard and pool landscaping. As with any major renovation project, it is important to plan ahead. Involve your family with the early planning work. Ask what their needs and preferences are for the pool landscaping space. If you have children, will they be entertaining their friends in and around the pool? If so, how much space do they need? Have safety features such as fences and non-slip pavers been considered? Will you be using the area for barbecues and parties? If the answer’s yes, factor that into the design to ensure you have enough space for these activities.
Make sure you allow for the strict adherence to safety regulations when you plan the pool area and its surrounds. All pool fences should meet the requirements listed in Australian Standard 1926 (AS 1926). Local councils will have more details on these requirements. Make sure the plans include safety points such as keeping chairs, tables, and other items away from fence perimeters to reduce the chances of children climbing over. Plan the shrubbery and features so the view of young children is not obscured and they can be supervised when using the pool.
Choose the right style
Select a style for the pool landscaping that will complement that of the house and garden. For example, a minimalist style featuring clean lines and stone planters would match a house of a modern design. However, a home of a more classic structure may be better suited to traditional landscaping, such as timber seating and rockeries.
Remember that the pool shape, size and the colours you choose are all part of the overall look and will help determine the impression the pool area will make with visitors and potential home buyers. It’s also important to take into account the type of lighting you will need as this will enhance the landscaping and add to the style. Not only will this make the area more attractive, it will also allow use of the pool and entertainment area once the sun goes down.
Don’t be afraid to experiment
Use your research to help you find the right pool landscaping for your backyard. However, don’t be afraid to try something different! Use online tools such as Google Images, Instagram and Pinterest as inspiration and a starting point for your own ideas. Try a unique shape to the pool and work on ways to integrate this into the surrounding pool landscaping.
The pavers you choose should be non-slip and functional, however there are a range of colours and textures now available, all of which will give the pool area an individual feel. Try incorporating a rockery surrounding the pool. The style you choose will define the backyard and all-important entertainment area.
If you have the room and resources available, think about creating a number of separate “zones” with the pool at the centre. The zones may include an entertainment area, a young children’s play area, a pool house or pavilion, a small garden and a separate relaxation or reading area with some privacy.
Talk to your pool designer about what can and can’t be achieved within the budget you have allocated, however, be willing to be bold to turn your dreams into reality! When designing the pool landscaping, it is essential to know the pool and its surrounding area will be the dominant part of the backyard once it is installed.
Pool landscaping budget
One of the first tasks in any landscaping or renovation package is to determine the budget available. There’s no use thinking grandiose schemes if you haven’t the budget to match them. Work out how much you can afford to spend on the pool landscaping, then build the project’s design around the final figure. Take into account everything you will need, including the lighting, pool heating, sun shelters and pavers. A superb landscaping project needn’t cost the earth and there are some excellent budget-conscious alternative ideas available online.
Don’t forget to make allowances for weather. Sun shelter is very important for people — particularly young children — to reduce exposure to the sun on hot days. Consider incorporating adequate shade facilities in the pool area to add protection against the dangerous UV rays of the sun. Don’t forget either about fickle weather changes. A backyard pool party or barbecue may be ruined by a sudden weather change, with rain driving people inside. Think about this and make adequate provision in the plan for a large sheltered area for people to gather and enjoy the outdoors during sudden rain storms.
Using the pool area as the focus of your landscaping will not only provide an entertainment area for you and your family to enjoy for many years, it will also add value to your property. With house hunters listing private pools as their most desired feature (particularly in the warmer parts of the country), making your pool the centrepiece of your landscaping makes sense.
Are you interested in finding out other ways to make your backyard swimming pool the centrepiece of your garden? Talk to our experts for more information and ideas to help your pool landscaping reflect the style and functionality you need for your requirements.