The decision to build a backyard swimming pool is an exciting one for homeowners. Many families dream and save for years before finally being able to pull the trigger and begin the swimming pool design process. (It’s easy to get carried away with the fun parts!)
But before you start stocking up on pool noodles, inner tubes and new swimsuits for the whole family, there are a few formalities that need to be taken care of. I’m talking about permits and other paperwork — they’re one of the most important parts of the swimming pool construction process. If you don’t secure the right permits, it could derail the entire project, cost you extra money, or set your schedule back.
New swimming pool construction always requires a building permit from your city or county. That swimming pool building permit is basically a written allowance from wherever you live to bring the necessary equipment to your property and do what’s needed to complete the project, including engineering work.
Securing these permits can take anywhere from four to six weeks, not including the time it takes to actually complete the forms. (Note: You’ll also need to submit an up-to-date survey of your property when you file for your permit. There will be more delays if you don’t have that!)
Architectural Review Board Approval
You may need to submit your plans and have them approved by a local architectural review board, which meets semi-regularly to do just this. There’s a lot of lead time here, as you’ll need to get your plans in well in advance of the meeting to ensure they get in front of the group.
In Neave’s service area, for instance, an ARB that meets monthly has a submission deadline two weeks before its monthly meeting — and if you miss that, your project’s review will wait another full month.
If your project requires any activity that would typically go against your city or county’s land use regulations, such as zoning ordinances or municipal codes, you will need a variance. This is an official, approved exception to those regulations.
Depending on where you live, variances can be very common or they may rarely happen, if ever. And no matter where you are, they can take several weeks to a couple of months to secure.
Grading and Drainage Plans
Some towns also require grading and drainage plans, which must be completed by a licensed engineer and approved by the town’s engineer. The plan itself can take two to four weeks to draw up, depending on the engineer’s backlog, followed by up to six weeks in the town’s engineering department.
Be sure, before starting any swimming pool project, that you know all the permits and other permissions you’ll need so a lack of preparation doesn’t trip you up later.
Of course, a good swimming pool contractor should know the ins and outs of the permitting process and should be able to help guide you through it — or, better yet, handle it themselves.
The swimming pool professionals at Neave Pools have worked hard throughout our history to establish good relationships with the regulatory bodies and inspectors in our service area. Those relationships have been made possible by our commitment to being thorough in our permit applications and by doing things the right way after securing our permits.
Ready to start your new swimming pool project?
If you’re in Hudson Valley, call (845) 463-0592. Westchester, call (914) 271-7996. Cold Spring, call (845) 463-0592, and in Connecticut, call (203) 212-4800. Or fill out the handy web form on this page, and we’ll get in touch with you to schedule a complimentary swimming pool consultation.sultation.