By Tawar Razzaghi
22. Jan. 2023
Home buyers have been splashing out: a swimming pool can add hundreds of thousands of dollars in value to a home, agents say.
Pools are in hot demand among young families looking to upgrade their homes since the pandemic hit, but they are not for every buyer type or suited to all properties.
Spending, and spending intentions on swimming pools is up in the past year on Commonwealth Bank figures and “pool” was the number one search term among prospective buyers for the past three years on Domain.com.au.
In general, a swimming pool can add value to a property, especially if young families are interested in the home, said James Sarzano of Stone Real Estate North Ryde.
But adding a pool just for the sake of having one was not always guaranteed to add value to a property, he warned. If it eats into precious backyard space then it can be a negative.
Properties that strike the balance right in having a pool with enough green space for kids to run around, and an alfresco area for entertaining, were popular, such as his listing at 5 Napier Crescent, North Ryde, asking $2.4 million.
“When they’re [the kids] little they love it, then they go off it and when they’re older, they’re back again, and now we’re at the stage where we’ve got our grandchildren who use it,” Gibb said.
“It ebbs and flows with how it goes … Definitely during COVID we used the pool a lot more again. I think that’s why they’ve come back into fashion.
“It does take up your time to keep it maintained but for me and the family, value wise, it’s been good. [My husband] Doug may say differently because he’s had to maintain it and clean it, but it’s a beautiful aspect of the property.”
Even properties by the beach can sell for less if they are without a pool.
A five-bedroom house with a pool at 54 Austral Street in Malabar sold for $3.275 million just before Christmas.
A nearby five-bedder at 65A Victoria Street without a pool sold for $2.8 million. Although it was on a smaller block than its neighbour, Agents and Co Property Group’s Nick Papas handled the listing and thought it could have achieved $200,000 more if it had a pool.
Papas said properties with pools remain attractive even if they are close to the water.
“The reality is if Victoria Street had a pool it would be hitting the $3 million mark,” Papas said, adding that the property was sold to an older family.
“If you’ve got young families, they want the pool for the family. Packing the kids up to go to the beach can be quite difficult.”
On average, pools added between $100,000 to $200,000 in value from young family buyer types, Papas said, but single-level homes with pools could deter downsizers.
In Baulkham Hills, a four-bedroom house at 26 Gleeson Avenue sold for $1.662 million by David Gennusa of McGrath Castle Hill.
It sold for $52,000 more than a recent comparable sale at 7 Priory Court in the same suburb due to the swimming pool being a point of difference, Gennusa said.
“The owners [at Gleeson Avenue] created an entertaining family oasis. That’s priceless having the pool as part of the backyard,” he said.
“Some buyers do see it as a negative from the maintenance side of things. But then also some people see it as an asset, it’s a point of difference when it comes to selling.”
In Western Sydney, pools are even higher on families’ list of criteria when hunting for a home so far from the beaches.
Blaze Real Estate’s Aldo Ianni sold a five-bedroom house at 25 Braeside Avenue, Smithfield for $1.341 million to a young family willing to stretch their budget.
“Their second option was to find a property with the space of adding a pool, but they didn’t want to go through all that effort and all that work. They paid a bit extra for the convenience of it already done.”
Nearby, a property with an extra bedroom at 148 Dublin Street but without a pool sold for $1,035,000.