Planning Your Budget for a Refreshing Upgrade


Has your backyard oasis become an eyesore, filled with chipped tiles, faded or cracked plaster, and broken equipment? Does the idea of a pool renovation project leave you wanting to throw in the towel? 

This guide will equip you with the knowledge and tools to transform your pool back into a sparkling source of relaxation and enjoyment. 

Material quality, design elements and labour all impact the final price tag. Understanding these factors allows you to prioritise and make informed choices to create your perfect pool within budget.

So, how much does a pool renovation cost? In this blog, we'll break down the cost of pool renovations and offer tips for maximising value. You'll also learn to prepare for the unexpected, making for a smooth and rewarding renovation journey. 



Understanding Pool Renovation Costs

Renovating your pool requires more than just a vision. You must plan carefully and have a realistic understanding of the financial commitment involved. 

Here's a breakdown of the various cost components that make up a pool renovation project:

  • Material: The bulk of your budget goes to everything from resurfacing materials, coping (the edging around the top perimeter of your pool), tiles, and equipment upgrades.
  • Design Choices: The quality of the material chosen can impact the cost. Complex designs like free-form pools with waterfalls and LED lighting are pricier than simple, rectangular pools.
  • Labour: Hiring skilled and licensed contractors.
  • Permits and Inspections: Paying for getting the necessary permits and inspections is crucial before starting your renovation.
    Not all renovations are created equal. Identify essential upgrades first, like resurfacing or equipment upgrades, and allocate your budget accordingly.

Compare material options, weigh the benefits of design features against their cost, and choose what best suits your needs.

By taking the time to understand and plan for these various cost components, you'll be in a great position to tackle the pool renovation process without burning through your budget.


Breaking Down the Expenses

Knowing the detailed expenses involved is fundamental for homeowners to allocate funds accurately when planning a pool renovation. 

Material and labour costs vary significantly based on the type of pool, the materials chosen for renovation, and the contractor's experience and location. 

Here is a breakdown of the average cost to resurface a pool.

  • In-ground Pools: Concrete pool resurfacing expenses can be substantial, especially if you choose high-end finishes. Basic plaster resurfacing starts at around $2,500-$3,900 for a 6 x 2.5-metre pool (15m²) or $6,000-$9,000 for a 9 x 4-metre pool (36m²), depending on extensive design choices and square footage.
  • Fibreglass Pools: The average cost to replace the fibreglass shell may range from $2,000 to $3,200 for a 6 x 2.5 metre (15m²) pool or $5,100 to $7,700 for a 9 x 4 metre (36m²) pool. The cost may vary depending on the shell's quality,
  • Vinyl Liner Pools: A liner replacement typically costs between $1,600 and $4,500. However, this price can fluctuate based on the liner's size, quality and design characteristics.
    If tiling is part of your pool renovation, the cost can range from $30 to $100 or more per square metre. 

This price depends on the type of tiles selected, with luxury materials such as glass residing at the higher end of the price spectrum.

Skilled labour is essential for a successful and safe pool renovation. 

Hiring licensed and experienced contractors can cost $70.00-$90.00/hr. Labour costs can fluctuate depending on your location. Contractors in high-demand areas typically charge more than those in rural areas.

The peace of mind and potential warranties offered by experienced professionals can be worth the investment.



Design Considerations and Their Impact on Cost

Now, let’s discuss some various design elements that can affect your budget and the cost-benefit of incorporating these trends into your pool renovation.

Water features like waterfalls, fountains, or jets are an added expense that can give your pool a dynamic look and sound, adding to the beauty and fun of your backyard.

LED lights that change colours can really make your pool pop. They add a bit to the cost but also let you enjoy your pool at night!

Using automated technology for heating, lighting, and cleaning the pool adds convenience and efficiency despite the initial investment. The savings in labour and energy can offset these costs over time.

Finding the sweet spot between your design dreams and budget means carefully considering the pros and cons of each detail to make sure the project fits both your vision and your wallet.


Cost-Saving Tips for Your Pool Makeover

Finding ways to cut costs without cutting corners is more important than ever, especially when it comes to pool renovations. 

Here are some cost-saving strategies that can help you achieve your dream pool makeover on a budget.

  • Quality Over Cost: Opting for materials that may have a higher initial cost but offer durability and longevity can save you money in the long run. For example, investing in a high-quality pool liner or a durable finish can reduce the need for frequent replacements or repairs.
  • DIY Some Tasks: While some aspects of pool renovation require professional expertise, there are tasks you can do yourself, such as landscaping around the pool area or installing certain pool accessories. However, always make sure these DIY tasks don't compromise the overall quality and safety of the project.
  • Off-Season Renovation Deals: Scheduling your pool renovation during the off-season (late fall or early winter) can lead to lower prices as demand for pool contractors decreases. Many companies offer discounts during these times to keep their teams busy.
  • Invest in Energy-Efficient Pool Systems: One of the most effective ways to save money in the long term is by investing in energy-efficient pool systems. Modern pumps, heaters, and LED lighting are more energy-efficient than older models, significantly reducing your utility bills. Solar pool heaters, for instance, utilise renewable energy from the sun, offering both environmental and economic benefits.

By applying these tips, you can ensure that your pool renovation doesn't end up making waves in your budget.


Preparing for the Unexpected

Anticipated swimming pool renovation costs often lead to some surprises. Creating a contingency budget is wise to avoid financial stress from unforeseen expenses, which typically means setting aside 10-20% of your total budget.

Unexpected costs can include relocating underground pipes, updating electrical systems to comply with codes, or addressing hidden structural issues in the pool. 

By planning for these potential extra expenses with a contingency budget, homeowners can keep their renovation on track, ensuring safety and quality without sacrificing design.



FAQs About Pool Renovation Cost

  • How Much Does It Cost To Refurbish a Pool in Australia?

    Refurbishing a pool in Australia varies widely depending on the pool type, size, condition, and the extent of refurbishment needed. Generally, the average cost can range from $2,500 to $8,000. 

    Basic resurfacing may fall on the lower end of that spectrum, while comprehensive refurbishments involving updating filtration systems, resurfacing, and adding features like lighting or waterfalls can be more costly.

  • Is It Worth Resurfacing a Pool?

    Yes, resurfacing a pool is often worth the investment for several reasons. 

    Firstly, it extends the life of your pool by addressing any wear and tear, cracks, or leaks. Secondly, it enhances the aesthetic appeal of the pool, making it more enjoyable and potentially increasing your property value. Lastly, newer materials used in resurfacing can also improve the pool's energy efficiency by maintaining temperature better.

  • What Is the Most Expensive Part of Installing a Pool?

    The most expensive part of installing a pool includes excavation, the pool’s shell and tiling. In-ground pools require significant excavation, which can be costly, especially if the site has challenging conditions such as rocky soil. 

    The material for the pool shell, whether it’s concrete, fibreglass, or vinyl, varies in price, with concrete generally being the most expensive option due to its durability and flexibility in design.



Your Guide to a Cost-Effective Pool Renovation

To pull off a successful pool makeover, it's all about thoughtful planning and sticking to your budget. You have a lot of control over your pool remodel cost.

Make smart choices like opting for durable materials. Sure, they might cost a bit more now, but they will save you money in the long run. 

If you're handy, doing some of the work yourself can cut costs, and looking for deals during the off-season can also help you save. Investing in energy-efficient systems is another wise move that will pay off with lower utility bills over time. 

And don’t forget to set aside a little extra cash for those unexpected expenses.

By adopting these strategies and tips, you can rejuvenate your pool while preserving both quality and budget, ensuring your backyard oasis remains your go-to spot for relaxation and leisure.