Pool Quote Process Question

cascadesJune 16, 2011

We are looking to build a pool in the back yard of our new house. This is our very first pool; although we had flirted with the idea last year, the yard on our old house was just too small for a decent size pool. We are in the process of getting quotes from various PBs in the area. Typically, how many times do we need to meet with the PB before we can receive a detailed quote?

The reason for this question is that most of the PBs we met came to the 2nd meeting with drawings, 3D demos and a rough cut of the price list. The 3D demos are extremely helpful as Hubby and I prefer the visual aid. Seeing the demo really helps to bring everything into focus. One of the PBs only presented a master landscape plan (which we can purchase for $650 if we don't go with him). It was really hard to visualize the project and doesn't help the bottom line as I cannot figure out the different price components, thus not being able to decide on how to phase the project. He did give a ballpark when pressed at around $300K. We agree to think about the possible phasing of the project and asked if we could meet again to see a possible 3D demo. Here is his answer:


we can do the 3d video for $500 (which you do not get to keep) or if you want to keep the design it is $850 for both plan view with measurements and the 3d video. The 3d takes a lot of time to build and we normally do this for clients who have already purchased the work and just want to make minor changes or if a client wants to purchase the design with the 3D option.


Is this normal practice for the pool industry? We are such newbies at this, I cannot figure out if he is really trying to protect his intellectual property and not get burned by frivilous clients, or he is just too high-end for us. For the financially-fortunate few, maybe price is not an issue. They are willing to sign the pool contract and just let the PB take care of everything. For any changes, they can simply afford to just pay for it with no questions asked.. We, the other other hand, would like to be more selective and be more cautious with our hard earned bucks.

I don't know if I should just be patient and keep meeting this PB, hoping to get a more detailed plan and price list. This is really frustrating!! Thank y'all so much.

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Is that a typo in your second paragraph??? $300K (!!!)

    Bookmark   June 16, 2011 at 10:37PM
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Nope. That is what he gave us as a rough estimate. Granted, it is the whole package of landscaping (front + back) + pool + decking and retaining walls. We live in the Northern Virginia area where the average backyard job with a 20x40 pool can cost around $100K. For some of the more upscaled neighborhood, a $450K-$500K outdoor oasis is the norm. That is why I feel that this particular PB is used to dealing with those clients who don't care how much they spend on a backyard.

    Bookmark   June 16, 2011 at 11:02PM
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WOW. My PB is located in Frederick, MD and I know he has done some very high end pools but he never came in with a scam like that. I have to agree that maybe this particular PB that you met with is more for the "free spender" or the person who doesn't have the time to get any ideas on their own. I know my PB is doing a pool in the Leesburg area right now and it is running the owner about $600K (NOT a typo). Granted my PB did not have the fancy 3D program but he has a landscape division and provided us with plenty of pics of other jobs that I could pic and choose from. I did meet with a guy out of Mt Airy, MD who did the whole project in 3D and charged you a fee for the plan if you didn't do it all at once. His prices were crazy, but then again he has done pools for Redskins and Wizards players so my pool would have been nothing to him. I think my project is pretty high end (keep an eye open for my photos sometime in the next week or so-it is almost done) but I have found that I prefer my own landscaping and I can do it much cheaper myself. Look around this site as well as check out other PB sites from your area for ideas. Don't be afraid to look at PB sites you would never even go with for ideas. I looked at MD pools and Anthony Sylvan for ideas and I would never go with such a big company. The pics on here are fantastic. Start a landscaping thread when you get your plan and ask for ideas from people familiar with your planting zone. There is so much free advice out there that I don't think you need to pay all that money. Just my 2 cents. Good luck.


    Bookmark   June 16, 2011 at 11:20PM
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Thank you so much for the sage advice. Do you mind sharing your PB's name? Are you happy with his worksmanship or his approach on price, design and support? We are also considering NVBlu, don't know if you have any thoughts on them.
Thanks a ton!

    Bookmark   June 16, 2011 at 11:52PM
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If any of you original posters are still visiting this site I would love to hear how your projects turned out. We are in the interviewing process for an inground pool in Fairfax and would like to know who you ended up using, if you were happy with your PB, any 'shoulda - woulda' thoughts, and final pricing. Also, if any of you built in Fairfax County were there any county hurdles?

    Bookmark   August 1, 2013 at 12:50PM
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