Many homebuyers dream of the backyard oasis their future home will have. Visions of backyard barbecues, cocktails in the hot tub and summer days spent floating in a pool have many prospective homebuyers salivating at the sight of some backyards. Home inspectors know that such amenities can be as complicated as they are appealing, though. If you’re hoping to help clients save money on their pools and spas, you may want to pursue swimming pool inspection training. The material taught in such courses can provide much-needed insight into the condition of pools and hot tubs you’ll inspect.
Standard home inspection training doesn’t always include information about pools and spas. These systems are not standard and won’t be found in most homes, which is why they’re often left out of home inspection curriculum. By earning your pool and spa inspection certification, you’ll diversify your service offerings while providing clients with a more comprehensive outlook of a home’s overall condition.
In addition to learning more about pools and spas, here are a few tips to help homebuyers save money on their backyard amenities
Ensure Pools are Up to Code
There are a surprisingly high number of regulations surrounding pools and spas on residential properties. Homebuyers should read up on local codes that could change the way their pool is maintained. Of course, after completing swimming pool inspection training, you’ll be well-versed in the local regulations and can help fill in knowledge gaps your clients might have. For example, many places require pools to be fenced in – specifics about fence height, gate materials, and construction will vary based on location. Even things like locks on windows near the pool will need to be checked, so be sure to base your findings on local regulations. If your clients fail to bring their property up to code, they could face serious fines.
Educate Buyers on the Age of the Pool
One of the most valuable aspects of a home inspection is getting an idea of the life cycles of the property’s many systems. As you work to educate buyers about their house, it’s essential to inform them of the age and current state of the pool. Pools and spas don’t age well – even when well-maintained, pumps and vinyl liners will inevitably need to be replaced. The state of the pool or spa can help reveal when and how serious future repairs may be. While you may not be able to predict the future, you can offer valuable insight into the life of the pool thus far.
Identify Electrical Issues
Aging liners and pumps are straightforward enough, but once you factor in the electrical systems in play in the average pool or hot tub, things can get complicated. A swimming pool inspection training course can give you the guidance you need to identify any potential electrical problems a client’s pool might have. Filters, lights and heaters all involve some degree of electricity, and repairs can be incredibly expensive. By alerting homebuyers to problems, you’ll ensure that they’re adequately prepared for costs associated with electric repairs. Even those with DIY skills should skip out on properties with lots of electrical pool issues. Only professionals should tackle such repairs – and they can be incredibly costly, too.
Deck and patio maintenance can be nearly as expensive as caring for the pool or spa. Inevitably, floorboards age, handrails become loose and wood needs re-stained. Homebuyers deserve to know if their deck has serious structural issues. Overlooking such a potentially expensive repair would be a mistake. As covered in swimming pool inspection training, be sure to check to see if a pool deck is slippery when wet. If it is, a dedicated evaluation may be needed to guarantee safety.
For concrete decks, you’ll want to look for cracks exceeding three-sixteenth of an inch in either vertical or horizontal directions. The deck should slope away from the pool with a drain channel installed between the deck and the foundation. Discoloration can sometimes indicate damage, so be mindful of any spots that seem out of place.
Educate Yourself with ICA
When it comes to identifying potentially problematic damage to a pool, spa or surrounding deck, you’ll want to back up your findings with official documentation of your pool and spa inspection certification. Some inspection training schools will charge a premium on the education necessary for pool certification. Thankfully, ICA offers the course as a free bonus class, available to anyone who signs up for our home inspection course. It’s just one of the many bonuses accessible in our online course library. If you’re hoping to save your clients money, diversify your services and take your inspection education to the next level, invest your time in swimming pool inspection training with ICA.