Pool Building 411: Which is Better In-Ground or Above-Ground Pool?

Thinking of building a pool? If you are a serious builder, planning what type of pool may get you stuck between an in-ground pool or above ground pool. Many factors go into a swimming pool creation. This will include permits, pool deck material, pool resurfacing, pool deck resealing, and options for designing your pool decks.

No need to hit 411! Keep the following terms in mind. Here are some of the bits and pieces of the pool building. 

  • Pool Building Permits
  • Pool Safety Inspection
  • Blueprint of the Pool 
  • Definition of Your Pool (is it a spa? A public tub? A commercial pool?)

You need to define the pools you are building. Having to do and follow what the list above asks should secure the approval from the Food and Housing Department of your local administration.

Above ground pool in the backyard

But first, you need to know what type of swimming pool will interest you. Today’s post will compare the requirements for in-ground vs. above-ground pools.

Define Your Pool

In-ground. The in-ground pool is a swimming pool where the water basin is below the ground. The exterior of an in-ground pool is displayed on its pool deckings. The pool decks surround the pool’s opening, and these decks attach to the ground.

An in-ground pool can be for commercial and residential use. This type is the most common. In the U.S. alone, 80% of pool owners use in-ground pools than those who have above-ground pools.

Above-ground. The above-ground pool, on the other hand, has been gaining popularity in the past years. As the name suggests, this type of backyard swimming pool is built above ground. The base of the pool is on the same level as the ground. The entire pool deck pops up over the floor-bed, and usually, you can see the exterior of the pool basin.

Pool Building Cost

There is no exact cost comparison to determine if an in-ground pool installation is cheaper. However, at first, you may consider an inground pool to cost less. But either way you build the pool, prices will vary. It will also help you monitor your cost if you keep a pool kit ready for building or pool repairs.


Below are some of the factors you need to consider if thinking about the cost of building a backyard pool.

  • Pool area size
  • Location
  • Material and supply 
  • Pool and pool decking material
  • Pool design

Above-ground pools may suit places with sloping soil structures. It will be challenging to dig out and flatten the ground. An above-ground pool may cost less for an owner to avoid restructuring the slope. Besides, a different permit will also be necessary when restructuring the soil.

Inground pool with hot tub

Design and material will also add to the cost of the overall installation process. Aside from what style you want to achieve, the type of climate will also influence the type of material you want to add around your pool. Check out the previous post on this page on commercial pool furniture buying guide.

Permits and Contracts

Professional pool contractors encourage the owner to process permits before building the pool. This is of high importance as well for swimming pools used for business. You can ask your local commercial pool deck resurfacing company to guide you on what permits are necessary for business owners. Even if you are hosting an Airbnb pool, it will also be essential to secure pool permits.

Pool Building Inspection

Whether you plan to build an in-ground pool or above ground pool, pool safety inspection will surely take place first. 


So, it is also of great value that you make sure your pool contractors put safety as the top priority. Only then can you experience backyard bliss to the fullest.

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