Cost of Building a Swimming Pool in LA

Thinking about building a swimming pool in Los Angeles? In this comprehensive guide, we’ll delve into the cost of building a swimming pool, what’s included, and what’s typically excluded when building a pool. We’ll also share expert tips on how to save money during the construction process.

Finally, we’ll walk you through a step-by-step process and timeline of pool building, from design and planning to the final inspection and handover. Whether you’re interested in a concrete, vinyl, or fiberglass pool, our guide has got you covered.

Are you dreaming of the convenience and fun a swimming pool could bring to your backyard? The cooler months are the perfect time to begin planning a swimming pool project, so that you can have your new outdoor living space ready for the summer season.


Here at GreatBuildz, a free service that connects homeowners in Los Angeles with reliable general contractors, we frequently help homeowners with their backyard swimming pool construction projects. Continue reading to learn about all the cost related tips involved with building a swimming pool in Los Angeles.

swimming pool with chairs to relax

Cost Range of an Inground Swimming Pool

The average cost of building an inground pool can range anywhere from $30,000 to $200,000 or more. The actual cost within this range depends on factors such as the size of the pool, the type of materials used, the complexity of the design, the location, additional features, and the labor and construction costs in the specific area.

What’s usually included:

  • Pool excavation and construction: The cost includes excavation and construction of the pool itself, including digging the hole, installing the pool shell, and building the structure.
  • Pool materials: The cost includes the materials used to construct the pool, such as concrete, fiberglass, vinyl, or other materials depending on the pool type.
  • Pool filtration and circulation systems: This includes the filtration system, pumps, and other equipment required to keep the pool water clean and properly circulated.
  • Pool decking and coping: The cost often covers the installation of the pool deck and coping, which are the areas surrounding the pool.
  • Permits and inspections: Expenses related to obtaining necessary permits and conducting inspections are typically included.
  • Basic pool features: The cost may include basic pool features like entry steps, lighting, and handrails.

backyard swimming pool with umbrella

What’s typically excluded:

  • Additional features: The cost range mentioned above generally covers standard features. Additional features such as waterfalls, slides, diving boards, hot tubs, or custom lighting are typically not included in the basic cost and will add to the overall expense.
  • Landscaping: Landscaping around the pool area is often not included in the basic cost.
  • Pool maintenance equipment: While the cost includes the initial pool equipment required for filtration and circulation, ongoing pool maintenance equipment like pool cleaning tools may not be included.
  • Pool heating: If you want to heat your pool, the cost of the heating system will likely be an extra expense.
  • Pool fencing: Many places have legal requirements for pool fencing, and the cost of installing a fence around the pool is usually separate.
  • Excavation challenges: If the site has difficult access, rocks, or other obstacles that complicate excavation, the additional costs may not be included in the basic range.

living room view into backyard swimming pool

Ways to Save Money on Building a Swimming Pool

Here are some ways to potentially save money on building a pool:

  • Pool design and size: Opt for a simple pool design rather than intricate shapes and features. A smaller pool will generally cost less than a larger one, so consider your needs and budget when determining the size.
  • Pool type: Different types of pools have varying costs. For example, vinyl and fiberglass pools can be more cost-effective than concrete ones. Research the pros and cons of each type and choose the one that best fits your budget.
  • Off-season construction: Consider building your pool during the off-season when demand is lower. Pool builders might offer discounts or be more willing to negotiate prices during the slower months.
  • Self-installation: If you have the necessary skills and experience, you might save money by taking on some of the tasks, like excavation or landscaping, yourself. However, be cautious, as mistakes can be costly to rectify.
  • Pool heating options: If you want a heated pool, consider solar heating or a pool cover to retain heat and reduce heating costs.
  • Reuse existing features: If you have some existing features in your backyard, such as a patio or landscaping, try to incorporate them into the pool design to reduce costs.

beautiful backyard swimming pool with diving board

The Process and Timeline of Building a Swimming Pool

The process of building an inground pool generally involves several key steps. While the specific details may vary depending on the type of pool and local regulations, here is a general outline of the process, and how long each step can take:

  • Design and planning (2 – 6 weeks): Determine the type, size, and shape of the pool you want. Work with a pool designer or architect to create a detailed plan, considering factors like location, access, landscaping, and any additional features you desire. Obtain necessary permits and approvals from local authorities.
  • Excavation (1 – 2 weeks): The construction site is excavated to create the hole for the pool. The depth and dimensions are carefully measured and adjusted according to the pool design.
  • Pool shell installation (1 – 8 weeks depending on pool type): Depending on the type of pool (concrete, vinyl, or fiberglass), the pool shell is installed in the excavated hole. For concrete pools, rebar reinforcement is typically added before concrete is poured and shaped to form the pool structure. For vinyl pools, pre-formed panels are assembled to create the structure, and a vinyl liner is then placed inside. For fiberglass pools, a pre-formed fiberglass shell is placed in the hole.
  • Plumbing and electrical work (1 – 2 weeks): Plumbing lines and fittings are installed to facilitate water circulation and filtration. Electrical work is done to connect pumps, lights, and other pool equipment.
  • Pool deck and coping (2 to 4 weeks): The area around the pool, known as the pool deck, is constructed using concrete or other materials. Coping, which is the material that covers the pool’s edge, is installed to provide a finished look and a smooth transition from the deck to the pool.
  • Filtration and circulation systems (1 – 2 weeks): Pool pumps, filters, and other circulation equipment are installed to keep the pool water clean and properly maintained.
  • Additional features: If desired, any additional features such as waterfalls, slides, diving boards, or hot tubs are installed at this stage.
  • Testing and finishing touches (1 – 2 weeks): The pool’s systems are thoroughly tested to ensure they are functioning correctly. The pool interior and deck are finished with any desired surface materials. Any necessary adjustments or final touches are made to complete the construction.
  • Pool filling and start-up (1 – 3 days): The pool is filled with water and chemical levels are balanced to ensure water quality. A professional pool service may help with the start-up process to ensure everything is working correctly.
  • Final inspection and handover (1 – 2 weeks): A final inspection is conducted to ensure the pool meets safety and construction standards. Once the pool passes inspection, it is handed over to the owner, and any relevant maintenance and safety guidelines are provided.

man cleaning backyard swimming pool

Looking for a contractor to help build and install a pool on your property? GreatBuildz is here to help. To be matched with the perfect pre-vetted pool contractor in the Los Angeles and Southern California areas, contact us today at (818.317.3567) or visit our website.

Hi, we're Paul and Jon - Co-Founders of GreatBuildz. We believe everyone deserves to find a great contractor, have a stress-free renovation, and enjoy their beautiful new space. There are so many contractors out there and it's often hard to tell the good from the bad... until it's too late. We started our company to help simplify your contractor search and help you have a stress-free renovation experience. We're always available to help, no matter where you are in the process. Click here to learn more about our story.

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