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Old 02-23-2010, 02:10 PM
 
Location: Topeka, KS
1,560 posts, read 6,806,358 times
Reputation: 509

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We're planning to close on a home next month and we just got the results of the pool inspection. (Which was just a visual inspection since the pool is mostly drained and the pool is winterized).

The pool is a hybrid construction with fiberglass wall panels and a concrete bottom and was installed in the mid 1970's. There is some bubbling of the finish of the pool that could be the paint or the fiberglass under the paint. We won't really know until the paint is removed. Also we couldn't see the bottom due to a thick mat of leaves and debris in the pool. They have a heater for the pool, but it's not hooked up and it appears that it hasn't been connected for quite some time. (I.E. It's a rusty piece of metal in the back yard near the rest of the pool equipment.)

The inspection was performed by the pool guy who did the initial install so he's familiar with the product and the pool. His rough estimate to fix the pool was close to $10,000. Our full home inspection is scheduled for Friday.

We chose this house for a number of reasons, but the pool was one of the deciding factors. How should be approach this as we proceed. Should we wait until we get the results of the home inspection too, incase there are other issues there? Or should we go ahead and have our agent speak with their agent ASAP?
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Old 02-23-2010, 02:20 PM
 
Location: San Antonio, TX
556 posts, read 1,967,560 times
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In our part of the country, an inground pool can actually negatively affect the price of a home - and certainly one that hasn't been properly maintained and is of older construction. But - oddly enough - when we were looking, any concerns about the pool were clearly 'not for discussion' - and price point wasn't up for discussion based on any pool findings.

What does the seller say about the pool at this property? Are they willing to include an allowance for pool repairs? And this might be a case where if you like the house, and can justify investing 10,000 into the pool after purchase, you just go into the deal with this being known.

I'm not sure why you can't ask the seller to have the pool 'opened' for spring use - so the heater can be tested, along with the bottom of the pool integrity, etc. A motivated seller, not willing to budge on any needed pool repairs, should at least be willing to put it through a TRUE pool inspection, full of water, with all equipment on/running. It might mean you have to spend an afternoon at the property watching all this.....but at least you'd be a bit better informed of the REAL work the pool needs. And I'm not sure I'd use the same company that installed the pool - having a second opinion not related to the original work.
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Old 02-23-2010, 02:25 PM
 
28,461 posts, read 78,144,490 times
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In my climate, which is very similar to Topeka this time of year, the practice of MOST sellers would be say the pool is "completely as is" and even though I can understand that it is a feature you want the seller very likely will not be amenable to any sort of verification of condition / function nor should you expect them to agree to any repair maintenance requests. The weather factor is the single biggest reason, but also there is the idea that the pool is an "accessory" that as long as you factor in POSSIBLE costs / condition will be yours to decide to get serviced / fill in / upgrade. EVEN if the weather predictions suggest that the "last freeze of the year" is past, the tremendous damage that could happen with a freak cold snap causing huge damage to a otherwise functional pool is something a seller in the cold weather region would be NUTS to consider!

Probably not the best news to hear as a buyer, but pretty common for folks with outdoor pools in the Chicago region.

Now if this were a June closing you MIGHT be able to get a pool guy to really get the thing in tip top shape but odds are the seller would have already made a decision about showing the pool in it best light OR had it drained and stipulated "condition of pool is "as is".

With an indoor pool I have seen only nearly new houses make any kind of promise of condition / function -- just too much stuff that can unexpectedly get expensive.

All that said I have know a few folks with in-ground pools / indoor pools and the majority of such home owners feel that every dime they put into the pool was like having a private escape right in their backyard. Even $10,000 is really only just a couple of fancy vacations...

Good Luck!
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Old 02-23-2010, 02:31 PM
 
Location: Topeka, KS
1,560 posts, read 6,806,358 times
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The heater isn't hooked up. It was originally, but at some point in the past 35 years all of the pool equipment was moved to be closer to the pool. (Probably a warning sign...) When the equipment was moved the heater wasn't connected, and I mean, no water or gas lines were run to the heater. So it can't be tested.

We're in Kansas and between there being 3 - 4 inches of leaves in the pool and periods where the high temps are still being below freezing, they can't open the pool now.
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Old 02-23-2010, 03:17 PM
 
Location: Tempe, Arizona
4,511 posts, read 12,757,036 times
Reputation: 2199
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoPadge View Post
...was installed in the mid 1970's. ...

The inspection was performed by the pool guy who did the initial install ...
I'm amazed that the original installer is still around doing business!
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Old 02-23-2010, 04:14 PM
 
28,461 posts, read 78,144,490 times
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Old pool guys never die, they just float away ...
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Old 02-24-2010, 08:39 AM
 
Location: Topeka, KS
1,560 posts, read 6,806,358 times
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He's in his 70's now, but seems pretty spry for his age.
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Old 02-24-2010, 06:20 PM
 
Location: Arizona!
675 posts, read 1,238,962 times
Reputation: 1089
Quote:
Originally Posted by GoPadge View Post
We're planning to close on a home next month and we just got the results of the pool inspection. (Which was just a visual inspection since the pool is mostly drained and the pool is winterized).

The pool is a hybrid construction with fiberglass wall panels and a concrete bottom and was installed in the mid 1970's. There is some bubbling of the finish of the pool that could be the paint or the fiberglass under the paint. We won't really know until the paint is removed. Also we couldn't see the bottom due to a thick mat of leaves and debris in the pool. They have a heater for the pool, but it's not hooked up and it appears that it hasn't been connected for quite some time. (I.E. It's a rusty piece of metal in the back yard near the rest of the pool equipment.)

The inspection was performed by the pool guy who did the initial install so he's familiar with the product and the pool. His rough estimate to fix the pool was close to $10,000. Our full home inspection is scheduled for Friday.

We chose this house for a number of reasons, but the pool was one of the deciding factors. How should be approach this as we proceed. Should we wait until we get the results of the home inspection too, incase there are other issues there? Or should we go ahead and have our agent speak with their agent ASAP?
Sounds very similar to ours. 1980, concrete bottom with fiberglass sides. When we bought this house 5 yrs ago we didn't have the pool inspected- it was advertised 'as is'. We bought from a flipper who got the house in a tax auction. He had painted the pool with housepaint, so it looked good. but we ended up having it sandblasted and professionally painted. $10k is a reasonable estimate for a complete overhaul including mechanicals.

If they are advertising the pool as in good working condition but the inspection shows a $10k problem, I would think you would have grounds for some negotiating.
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Old 02-24-2010, 06:51 PM
 
Location: NW Las Vegas - Lone Mountain
15,756 posts, read 35,513,212 times
Reputation: 2661
Don't get carried away. In many places in the east and midwest pool make a negative contribution to the home value. So a bad pool adds value.

Just kidding...take the 10K into account and decide if you want the house with a pool that will cost you that much.

I would get all the numbers straight and then approach it as a single number...How much you willing to pay for the place knowing you will likely have to add X dollars.
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Old 02-24-2010, 10:18 PM
 
Location: Hampton Cove, AL
692 posts, read 1,393,833 times
Reputation: 244
I would think that it wouldn't hurt to ask. Anything can be stipulated in a contract. Especially with this type of a market.

Personally I might as for half of the $10K repair. However, it also depends on the price of the home, If you are buying a $50K home, you might not have as much negotiating room.
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