Philadelphia suburbs pool builder references?

mrtahitiMay 21, 2012

Hi Everyone, am looking to finally take the plunge on a new in-ground pool and wanted to solicit feedback on reputable builders. Have heard of Arista, Carlton, JMK, Ted's to name a few. Any feedback on any of these or other PBs? Will be looking at a 650-700sft pool with spa, salt water, heater, etc. Thanks in advance for any and all comments.

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    Bookmark   May 23, 2012 at 1:13PM
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IMO the best builder in the area is Crystal Clear Signature .. Vince Pistcitelli... great product, service, and follow through. Does 20-30 a year.. has been around 20 years... won't be the cheapest...but competitive... Every builder on your list I have been involved in fixing one of their pools at one point or another so I can't say you going to get the best product or experience... and none are known for standing behind the product... they would rather go to court..... Monogram is a brand new pool builder who got out of the housing market when it tanked. Relies on his subs to build the pools... probably has built under 50 pools .... I would let them practice in the neighbors yard first.

    Bookmark   May 23, 2012 at 6:10PM
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Seems to me that you can gain a good bit of experience in 50 Pools! SOOO...what is the number that a pool builder can be at your level Mr top50?

    Bookmark   May 24, 2012 at 12:36AM
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Thanks for the feedback. Both of these builders appear to be north of Philly some 40-50 miles from where I am in Media/Glen Mills. Would prefer to find someone more local.

    Bookmark   May 24, 2012 at 8:00AM
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I woke up this morning and wondered why my ears were burning!

mrtahiti- I've heard great things about crystal clear signature. you should check with them, as they might come down your way. Another builder that supposedly does a great job is Aquabello. through the industry grape vine, I've been told they their customers really love them.

Full disclosure - I don't have first hand experience with either of those companies and I am actually Monogram Custom Pools up here in the Lehigh valley.

Sceadu- thanks for the kudos and "defending my honor"

topfiftybuilder - I've generally learned to ignore anonymous, erroneous posts, but since you are a "top fifty builder," I am assuming you must be a competitor that lost some deals to me? What company do you work for? Sorry if I stepped on your toes! Couple of quick clarifications, we are now and have been for about 20 years the busiest, most award winning custom builder in the Lehigh Valley. We've completed 350 projects ranging from simple pools to $3,000,000 houses...and everything in between. We typically build 25-30 pools a year and we were just named one of the Nation's Top 50 Pool builders. We are the ONLY builder to get the BBB's highest honor, the Premier Award for Excellence in Customer Service. I've built/consulted/and or designed pools as far away as California and Florida, but 99% of our business is in Lehigh and Bucks county. The housing market may have "tanked," but not for Monogram. We have been consistently busy and got into the pool business not because "we got out of the housing market" but because we weren't happy with the service our home customers were receiving from other pool builders. We were constantly having to fix pools built by the pool builders in our houses..and we quite simply got tired of the lack of customer service.

But enough about that...mrtahiti, although you are too far south for us, if there is anything I can do to help a fellow gardenweb member, please don't hesitate to contact me. There are a lot of great builders down your way. Just watch out for the ones who bad mouth others or don't seem to have a long list of references. check out other pools they have built, talk to customers, and check the web.

Good luck...and feel free to contact me on or offline anytime for some friendly, free advice.

Tony Caciolo, President
Monogram Custom Pools
voted Lehigh Valley's best pool builder
One of the "top 50 builders in the USA"

    Bookmark   May 24, 2012 at 9:20AM
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Sceadu I have built about 350 pools in my pool career with 3 different companies, many have been featured in this forum and have seen the pages of National Magazines, Design Awards , etc. Thanks for asking.

Looking back at my comment it probably came out sideways which was not my intent , for that I apologize. To answer your question no there are no sour grapes and no you haven't taken any pools from me, just stating that you are new at building pools in our area. I'm in the industry in a different capacity so I am not in competition with you.

And as you know anyone can get into the pool business with a list of subs and call themselves a pool builder. The good companies stay around long enough to honor warranties and not leave customers hanging as has happened so much in the past few years. The first 3-4 years are the honeymoon for companies because they should have no warranty issues... I've seen good pool builders (lousy at service) fail quickly once that period hits. I hope your not one of those.

Congrats on all your accolades , the BBB and Top Fifty are great accomplishments... I have built over 100 pools in the Lehigh Valley... probably 20 within 5 minutes of your house... I have multiple (3-4-5-6) in many developments up there , and have 7 pools on Eisenhower Dr in Colts' Run .. all built within 3 years.... So believe me I understand customer service... about 70% of my business was referral.

All The Best... Scott Payne

    Bookmark   May 25, 2012 at 4:08PM
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Hey Scott,
Are you still with Blue Haven? I think I worked on a few of your pools (tommy G and the dickers.)

No offense taken now that you clarified. As you know, the pool industry is filled with some questionable characters!

And believe me, after almost 20 years of homebuilding with over 350 projects under our belt, we know something about customer service! 20 years later, I still go back to customer's houses and fix items for them! But that is probably why we are the busiest home/pool builder in the area!

One difference...95% of my business (including the 5+ massive houses we have going up now) are from referrals. But that is probably because we don't do any advertising other than some internet the only way people find us is through referrals.

I also agree with you about how anyone with a list of subs can be a pool builder. It is a pretty shameful industry. When we built our first pool 8 years ago, I was shocked with the lack of quality in some of workers we checked out. I am lucky to have a very loyal team....some of which have been with us for 20 years...and they "get it" but that isn't too common. I was afraid you were lumping me into the the knucklehead category, so I truly appreciate your clarification and apology.

Feel free to contact me offline anytime.

Tony Caciolo, President
Monogram Custom Pools
Monogram Custom Homes

    Bookmark   May 27, 2012 at 11:57AM
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Thanks Tony, I left you a voicemail on your work number with my info... Reach out anytime... Thanks

    Bookmark   May 27, 2012 at 2:39PM
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I remember when TFB was with Blue Haven and they made a mess of my project. Broken promises, missed commitments with extra charges for their mistakes. There were design flaws TFB was responsible for that BH attempted to correct with short cuts. These attempts were, I believe, to protect their profits, not do the right thing for the customer. TFB might know good customer service but certainly didn't attempt to practice it. He had the opportunity to step up to the plate but instead he completely disappeared.
Claims placed to the BBB are responded to with untruths and there is no authority to validate/verify the truth. Do folks really think the BBB is out to protect the consumer?

    Bookmark   May 29, 2012 at 4:59PM
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