Planning to build your own inground pool involves some organization skills. In essence, you will be acting as a General Contractor for the project, and using a few sub contractors to complete certain tasks. Labor, Materials, Equipment, Supplies and Tools can all be planned out in advance for each phase of your DIY inground pool project.
It's important to start organized and stay organized when you are building your own pool. Fortunately, it's a logical process that nearly anyone can follow. Planning ahead will save you from delays, which can end up costing you money or creating extra work.
How to Keep Your Pool Project on Track
Notes & Calendars. You may be the paper and pencil type, and if keeping track of your pool project with a system of handwritten lists works for you, then that's the best method. Make lists of each phase of your pool construction project, along with any necessary tools or supplies that each phase will require. Allow plenty of room to jot down questions, answers and notes, as well as estimating the time and work needed for each phase and sub-phase.
If you like to work with spreadsheets and are familiar with Microsoft Excel, it can be the most comfortable pool project management tool for many to use. Set up different tabs for each phase of pool construction, or do it all on one master sheet to total up all dollars spent and man hours required at each phase. You can download project management templates that you can use for free. You can also integrate the spreadsheet with your Outlook Calendar and Tasks functions.
Off the Shelf Project Management software is another road for the computer literate DIY pool builder. These allow you to quickly create what's known as a Gantt chart, pictured left, to track milestones that you create. Most allow you to assign tasks to owners, and track work hours, percent of completion and costs.
Basecamp is a well known tool that we have used around our office for collaborative projects, but there are many available online. GanttProject and TaskJuggler are good free tools that I know of, and there are many others - free project management tools that you can use to build your own swimming pool.
Here's a sample of items that should make it on your pool project management lists. Your situation will be slightly unique, every pool is!
If you have a sloping yard, you may need more grading around the backyard, to keep the water moving around the pool, or you might install small retaining walls to enlarge the pool area.
With inground pools, you will usually need some type of fencing. Check your local government website for details on pool fences around inground pools. Usually a 3 sided fence is allowed, with the fourth side being the house, however a 4-sided fence is safer.
Are you adding any water features to your pool? If you are, plan this ahead of time, by obtaining necessary materials and planning for their installation. Small water features can be fed from the filter pump, but larger fountains, cascades or waterfalls require a separate fountain pump.
Like DIY pool installations, this blog post was a collaborative effort - using our own in-house project management tool! Whichever tools or methods you use to keep your inground pool project going from A-Z, or if you enlist the help of Rent-a-Randy to supercharge the process, we are here to help. Give us a call anytime at 800-983-POOL to discuss your Pool Project Management!
SPP Pool Expert