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  • Writer's pictureVergil Garcia

The ROI of Plastering Your Pool

Planning your pool’s resurface/ renovation project can be a daunting task to complete, especially if the project is for your homeowner's association or club. Many questions come to mind;

  • Do we need to re-plaster/remodel our pool now?

  • Can it last another year or two?

  • Will every member like the newly renovated finish?

  • What are the benefits of re-plastering our pool?

  • Is it worth it?

  • How long will it take?

  • What will be the lifespan of the new interior finish?

  • How much will it cost?

In this article, we will be covering all the points above to make an informed decision when it comes to remodeling your pool.

Your Community or Clubs Greatest Summer Asset

If you are a club manager, board member of a homeowner’s association, or a community member, you are aware that your pool is an asset to your community or club. You inject money into it year after year with the hopes of getting something in return or at least breaking even through membership and dues, all while creating a safe and fun environment for members and guests. It is one of the most used amenities that families and members flock to during the summer months, typically during early May to September; some early birds open beginning of April for the swim team. With this thought in mind, your pool will need different repairs and maintenance throughout the year and summer; we advise you to have a capital expenditure reserve fund for your facility in the event repairs are required. Be aware that when dealing with pools, it is not a matter of if something will break; it is only a matter of when.

  • Delamination throughout the surface (holes in plaster),

  • Scaling and Etching- Very Rough Areas

  • Discoloration Of Surface

  • Safety Hazard and Risk To Swimmers

When the pool's surface poses a hazard, such as holes and the risk of injuring swimmers, the local health department will flag these issues and require the pool to be repaired before opening. For more details of common issues with pool plaster, we suggest that you read 5 Common Issues with Pool Plaster.

When is a good/right time to plaster my pool?

The ideal time to plaster your pool is in the offseason right after the swim season has ended, in the late winter /early spring, such as late January to April before the pool opens for the summer, and throughout the summer. Typically, the demand for pool contractors and applicators is higher in the spring season; labor costs will slightly increase during this time versus the fall season.

Be cautious; in the winter months, if the temperature is below 40 degrees, the plastering process cannot be completed; due to the inability to dry properly. Depending on your area, the weather conditions will vary. In our home base, metro Atlanta, the weather during late January varies, but during late February is when we start getting appropriate temperatures to start applying plaster.

How long will plastering my pool take?

Depending on the size of your pool, the entire process of demolition, prepping, and applying will take a 1 to 2-week time frame. The process will also depend on any uncontrolled variables such as weather.

Why would I re-plaster my pool?

Besides considering that the pool might be a hazard to swimmers and badly damaged, your members' consensus of their community is another. Members are wanting and paying for a nice, clean, safe amenity. In most communities, the pool and tennis courts are the leading amenities that members utilize. Suppose your pool is damaged and not inviting. In this case, members will not have the urge to move to the neighborhood, or if your homeowner association has mandatory dues, members will be less likely to use the pool, and no one likes to pay for anything they are not using.

The domino effect starts to trickle; if fewer members use the pool, fewer members will join or pay a monthly membership. If fewer members join, then there will be fewer funds for the community, leading to another set of challenges more significant than a pool.

Let's face it; members like to see visual upgrades when their money is behind it; re-plastering and renovating your community's or Club’s pool is an excellent way to display this.

Renovating your pool will upgrade one of your greatest amenities to an inviting, safe, clean space. Typically after a renovation, inactive members have a reason to visit the pool since it is an upgraded and new amenity.Who wouldn't want to see their community's newly renovated pool at least a few times throughout the summer? This will increase membership which the community can focus on other activities and projects that will benefit the members.

“How much is it”?

That is the question we all want to know. Yes, my pool is damaged and has holes throughout the surface, but HOW MUCH? The truthful answer is, it depends.

Each pool is different and has its own set of variables that affect the total cost; here are a few to name:

  • Total Square footage

  • Is Demolition Required?

  • What Type of Surface Is Being Applied

  • How Accessible is the Pool?

  • And More

These different variables dictate what the total price will be. Make sure to select a contractor with hands-on experience with the renovation and remodeling process that will be honest throughout the entire process of what is needed and not only tell you what you want to hear.

The True Cost of Your Pool Being Renovated

One thing to consider as you determine your future renovation pool project is the relation between the project cost, the surface's longevity, and the membership. Yes, remodeling your pool will be an upfront cost, but you must consider the cost over the surface's lifespan and the impact on membership.

For example, your community white plaster project is quoted at $20,000; when appropriately maintained, white plaster has a life span of 8 to 10 years. Your community has 100 members currently, 80% are active members, and 20% are "not interested "in the amenity package. A quick way to determine how this renovation will impact each member throughout the estimated lifespan is the formula below:

Total Investment for renovation ÷Longevity of Remodel÷12 months÷ Total active members= Monthly cost of remodel per member

With the example above, let's plug in the numbers. To be conservative, let's suspect that the white plaster lasts 9 years.

$20,000 ÷ 9 years ÷ 12 months ÷80 active members = $ 2.31 per member

Over 9 years (108 Months) , with 80% active members each month, the project's cost will be $2.31 per member each month. This is not taking into account the potential increase in membership due to the renovation. This formula will help you gauge the relationship between the total renovation cost, the longevity of the renovation, and also your membership. As you look over your financials, the monthly per-member cost is a great financial indicator of the effect on membership.

We have added the lifespans of the most common interior finishes as well as a per a member calculator at the bottom of the article so you can determine your own for your community or club.

  • White Plaster 8 to 10 years

  • Quartz 10 to 15 years

  • Pebble Aggregate 15 to 20 years

Disclaimer: Renovating your pool will not guarantee an increase in membership; your neighborhood's factors depend on your community's specifics; your community board members or club manager will know best. The other variables to consider, such as membership decreasing because members move out, but also consider that membership will increase due to an upgraded facility. Another variable to consider if the community is not planning to increase dues over x years; if so, plan and budget accordingly.

The renovation of the pool surface does not guarantee; no issues will arise throughout the entire time frame of the new interior finish. Just like a car or house, things break even if it’s new, your pool is no different. It is still recommended to put aside funds for repairs, maintenance, and various mechanical problems that can arise, i.e., pump room equipment, safety equipment, etc. However, the chances of issues with a newer interior finish are less likely than the old damaged surface based on safety and structure. We hope you realize the return in your community's investment and what benefits it will bring; here is a quick recap:

  • A clean and safe facility that members and families can gather

  • Increase in membership

  • A more active community, which is attractive to new homeowners

  • Decrease in pool's surface issues

Renovating your pool is a great option for your community, a decision that impacts the community as a whole and membership. This decision is an investment to the community with one of the determining factors to be increasing the community ambiance, which will lead to an increase in membership. Make sure to find a hire a qualified contractor and applicator that will complete the interior finish to maximize the life span of the surface. Suave Pools has hands-on experience with renovating pools of all sizes and performing quality and long lasting results for all interior finishes types. To get your free quote today, click the link below.


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