Do pools help or hurt your home sale?

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The answer is yes — I’ll explain.

I can tell you, anecdotally, that almost all home buyers in the $1 million-plus range either want a pool or will put a pool in. Anytime I have a home without a pool listed in excess of $1 million, nearly every buyer asks if the backyard will accommodate a pool. In that price range, a pool is an important feature.

It’s strange then that homes without pools over $1 million seem to sell faster. Over the past 12 months, in North Fulton, homes without pools listed over $1 million spent 25 percent less time on the market than homes with pools. I can’t give you a definitive explanation as to why but a guess might be that those homes with pools were, on average, more expensive and therefore took longer to sell. Pools are important, but so is price – not really a surprise.

Homes in lower price ranges with pools consistently sold faster than homes without pools, 30 percent to 40 percent faster to be exact. Because there are far fewer homes with pools, the low supply ends up driving demand.

An important point to keep in mind though is return on investment. Only put a pool in if you will enjoy and use it. Don’t ever do it for an investment. Appraisers typically give a pool a value between $15,000 and $20,000. It may help your home sell faster, but it won’t increase the value dramatically.

The best option? Buy a home with a pool, thank the seller for putting it in and enjoy the gift.

Bob Strader is a local realtor with the NORTH Group of Keller Williams Realty. Visit his blogs liveincumming.com or liveinalpharetta.com or email him: info@thenorthgroup.com.