3 Biggest Mistakes to Avoid When It Comes to Pools in Multi-Family Buildings

Pools have always provided a welcome escape – a place to rest and relax, gather with friends and family, and even get exercise. But pools are not something you can add to a home, condo or multi-family unit on a whim. They require significant thought, planning and the help of a professional general contractor who can guide you through building code and engineering requirements as well as determine their feasibility.


At Seacoast Construction, pools are a big part of most every multi-family or residential projects we do here in South Florida. We understand the myriad challenges they pose and the domino effect of problems they can have on an entire building if they’re not done correctly.


We’ve also seen others around us make big mistakes when it comes to pools, and we don’t want that to happen to you. Take note of these three mistakes to ensure they don’t happen to you with your next project.


Mistake #1: Failing to Understand Structural Requirements for a Pool

Adding a pool to a property adds an immense amount of weight to it, and the structure has to support it – all. the. way.


For pools in particular, it’s important to understand the difference between dead load and live load. Dead load requires self-supporting of the structure. Water weight is a dead load. A structure is a dead load. Live loads are people or plants or planters – something that is not necessarily there 100 percent of the time. It is transient. Understanding load requirements and the type of load a building has to bear is important for ensuring the building can structurally withstand it all.


Mistake #2: Trying to Cut Corners or Implement “Patch” Workarounds

If you’re thinking about adding a pool onto a roof deck, the structure below must be able to meet the new demands (see mistake #1 above). Moving ahead with a pool install by implementing small workarounds here or there might be fine…for a while…until it is not. This can lead to a big expensive mess, cracked concrete, or worse.


Building codes and structural engineers will determine what will and won’t work when it comes to a pool, but you still might encounter contractors who try to cut corners.


Mistake #3: Hiring the Lowest-Bidding Contractor for the Job

The three mistakes we’re highlighting tend to build on each other (and not in a good way). When you hire an inexperienced contractor or one who promises to get things done on the cheap, there are a couple of disappointing outcomes that are sure to follow.


First, the job won’t be done on the cheap – in fact, it is almost a sure-fire way to encounter cost overruns. Anyone who promises this should also carry a big red flag with them. And second, you are likely to run into major issues down the road (if not already on Day 1) – be them structural or otherwise.


By hiring the low-ball bidder, you’ll find yourself confronted with corner-cutting workmanship (mistake #2) and a weakened overall structure (mistake #1).


The good news is you can avoid these mistakes by partnering with us at Seacoast Construction for your multi-family construction. Contact us today to set up a time to talk about your project.


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