One of the best ways to stay cool in the summer is to go for a dip in the pool. While pools can be expensive, there are plenty of cost-efficient hacks to create a relaxing pool experience on a budget. From stock tank pools to PVC storage bins, these hacks can transform your summer vacation without breaking the bank.
Surround Your Above-Ground Pool With Plants
Above-ground pools are innately going to be less expensive than those built into the ground because there’s so much less labor that goes into it. The drawback is that they don’t always look the nicest.
An easy fix is to just add some plants and greenery around the perimeter of the pool! Use flowers to add some color or taller plants to cover the side of the pool. Chlorine is toxic to plants, so be sure to either place them at a distance from the pool’s perimeter or to not overfill the pool.
Build An In-Ground Kiddie Pool
Building an in-ground pool can be expensive, but there’s a way to do it without breaking the bank. One idea is to dig a hole that can fit a kiddie pool in it! It’ll take some elbow grease, but it’s far cheaper than having a full-blown pool built.
Get some concrete blocks or bricks to create a “patio” around the pool and it’ll look as good as if a pro did it! Plus, the dogs will love it, too.
Turn A Pallet Into Poolside Storage
Finding a way to store pool items doesn’t have to be a giant hassle with the help of a pallet. This homeowner created a slender storage area/ towel rack by simply turning a pallet on its side and attaching it to two wooden posts.
To give it a summertime look, they painted the pallet red and screwed in hooks for the towels. Pool noodles slide right into the slots and look like they’re part of the decor.
Create A Floaty Bin Using PVC Pipes
Floating devices can make pool time even more enjoyable, but they can also take up a lot of storage space. A simple and cost-efficient solution is to build a storage bin out of PVC pipes!
Wrap the PVC pipes with pieces of pool noodles to give them some grip so the floats don’t slip right out. This person even added a little basket for smaller items. This way, the pool items don’t clutter the yard or garage, plus they have a place to dry!
Turn A Stock Tank Into A Pool
Stock tanks are one type of above-ground pool that looks great as is, especially if you love an industrial kind of design. The key is to find a level surface to place it on that can handle a ton of weight.
To keep the tank clean, it’s a wise idea to install a filter pump. Some also add in a waterproof liner to prevent rust down the road. This person built a deck around the tank to fully integrate it into the backyard design.
Construct A Pool Using Hay Bales
One of the most inexpensive ways to create a swimming pool is to do it with hay bales! Plus, the temporary pool can save tons in upkeep. Just break it down when the summer is over and put it back up the following year!
To build the pool, start by using hay bales to construct the perimeter. Then, smooth a large tarp over the entire thing. Secure the tarp with rope and use heavy objects to hold it in place. Fill it up with water and voila!
Create A Natural-Looking Pool Staircase
Instead of having a flimsy ladder leading to your above-ground pool, create a gorgeous rock staircase instead! The small detail makes a huge difference and gives the illusion of being out in nature.
Rock steps are far less expensive than building an in-ground pool, even if you have them professionally installed! Attach a small platform to the pool to create a proper landing for the stairs to lead up to. Surround them with some soil and plants to give the staircase a more authentic feel.
Build A Pool And Deck Using Pallets
One DIY craze that’s come to prominence recently is building pools using pallets! It’s a wonderful way to get a stunning-looking pool without a stunning price. Plus, you can easily modify how simple or extravagant the pool ends up being.
This person went all-out by constructing not only a pallet pool, but a deck and staircase, too! The finished product is jaw-dropping and is a great addition for those who love to throw parties!
Construct A PVC Towel Rack
Poolside towel racks are highly convenient, but they can also be highly expensive. A cheaper solution that looks and functions just as well is to construct your own rack using PVC pipes!
The project can be done in a day and costs a fraction of the cost of buying one. You can move it right next to the pool to keep towels nearby without getting them wet. Hang bathing suits and life vests out to dry, and store floats and pool noodles between the racks!
Create Your Own Pool Solar System
Those who love night swimming or want to enjoy their pool all season long may be interested in a DIY pool solar system. This homeowner secured a black garden bag to a hula hoop along with pieces of pool noodle to help the devices float.
The pool heats up the makeshift solar panels, which in turn increases the temperature of the pool! You can adjust the number of panels to suit your temperature needs as the weather changes.
Make A Pool Out Of Concrete
To get that polished, in-ground look, it’s ideal to construct the pool out of concrete. Paying to have it professionally done can cost tens of thousands of dollars! However, there are plenty of online tutorials that show how to do it for a fraction of the cost.
If you’re willing to put in some hard work, you can make a personalized swimming pool for just a few grand. Another way to cut costs is to make something small, like this soaking pool.
Use A Fitted Sheet To Cover Smaller Pools At Night
If you have a smaller, above-ground pool such as a kiddie pool, an inflatable pool, or a stock tank pool, there’s an easy solution to keep the pool bug-free throughout the night.
Simply grab an old fitted sheet and wrap it around the pool! Depending on the perimeter, you may need a fitted sheet that’s anywhere from twin size to king. It’s an incredibly easy solution for keeping things out of the pool through those buggy summer nights.
Make A Charming Pool Sign
One way to elevate and personalize your pool’s design is to add an inexpensive sign. This one is made out of pallets and reads, “Please don’t feed the mermaids.” The charming sign adds a bit of humor and design to the above-ground pool.
All you need is a few pieces of wood, a thin rope, stencils, and paint! Other humorous pool sign examples are, “You are now entering a flip flop zone” and “If you’re not barefoot then you’re overdressed.”
Create A Pool Using A Shipping Container
People are getting innovative with shipping containers, and some have even started building homes out of them! If a shipping container can turn into a home, it’s no wonder it makes a great pool, too.
This project requires a bit of help from experts to cut the container just right, add a lip, reinforce the walls, etc. Still, it comes out to be significantly less expensive than building a traditional in-ground pool, and it looks great!
Create Poolside Chairs
Have you ever made the mistake of sitting poolside to dip your feet in, then getting up and realizing the curb was wet? These poolside chairs solve that problem. Best of all, they’re easy to make!
Just buy some inexpensive, plastic outdoor chairs and cut off the legs. Paint them different colors or add a funky pattern to enhance the decor. And just like that, you’ve got a place to sit and dip your feet.
Add Some Water Features
The simpler and more cost-effective the pool, the more basic it can look on its own, making clever decor all the more vital. One way to spruce up something like a stock tank pool is to add some water features to it!
You don’t need anything overly fancy. A small water fountain can do wonders for creating a zen space. This homeowner even installed shower heads that come out of the surrounding fence and pour into the pool!
Use Trellis To Create An Island Feel
This above-ground pool is a perfect example of how some carefully-planned decor can make the pool feel completely integrated into an outdoor space. The homeowner placed reeds around the pool so that the sides don’t stick out like an eyesore.
They also built stairs leading to a small deck that’s positioned above the trellis. The wooden lattice looks natural on its own, but just imagine how it would look with vines growing through it! The plants make it feel like an island paradise.
Build A Jacuzzi Or Above-Ground Pool Bartop
One thing that many kitchens have nowadays is a large island with a bartop around the side. A brilliant designer took that idea and applied it to a jacuzzi by creating a wooden bartop that runs around the entire perimeter.
The same design could be applied to an above-ground pool. It gives the added space a purpose and adds lots more elegance. Plus, those inside the water have a place to put food, drinks, and towels.
Add An Inexpensive Waterslide
Having a waterslide doesn’t have to be an expensive addition to your backyard. Even the most basic waterslides significantly embellish a backyard and make the pool look more exciting.
This homeowner positioned a backyard playground set so that the slide goes straight into the pool! It’s perfect because the ladder and the landing are already built and attached. Keep a hose nearby to keep the slide wet and the kids will be having fun all summer long!
Create A Lovely Pool Staircase
One thing that can make an above-ground pool lots more aesthetically pleasing is a staircase. This homeowner made one out of wood that they stained to a lovely auburn color.
They also added some anti-slip tape to create a grip for people’s feet when they’re getting out of the pool, making the steps less hazardous. At the end of the banisters are two outdoor lights to illuminate the steps when it’s dark out and add some mood lighting.