Last Updated on February 16, 2021

When it comes to getting a pool, there are four main types you can choose from.

  • Above-ground pool
  • In-ground vinyl-liner pool
  • In-ground fiberglass pool
  • In-ground concrete pool

Budget will be one of the factors you consider as you decide, the cost of renting an excavator,  the cost of labor, but there are other things you should think of too. Before you make your decision, here are the pros and cons of each pool variety to help you narrow your choice.

The Pros and Cons of Different Pool Varieties

The Above-Ground Pool

  • The Pros: This is the most affordable option with regards to installation. There is no excavation required so digging into the ground and dealing with pipes, rocks, and wiring is not an issue.
  • The Cons: Above-ground pools have a reputation for being unsightly. Even when you add decorative decking, people think they look ugly. The metal framing for these also only lasts between 7 and 12 years so can cost more in the long run. The look of these can also be a deterrent should you decide to sell your home.

The In-Ground Vinyl-Lined Pool

  • The Pros: A cheap option for in-ground pools and they come in many shapes and sizes. The softer touch of the vinyl lining is appealing and prevents algae growth so cleaning is much easier.
  • The Cons: You need to replace the liner at least every 10 years so long-term costs can be high. The lining can also tear easily which may require more frequent replacement and more money.

The In-Ground Fiberglass Pool

  • The Pros: With this option, you get low maintenance and overall lifetime costs. The surface of the fiberglass prevents bacterial growth so you will not need to use as many chemicals. Fiberglass is quick and easy to install and can withstand a lifetime of use.
  • The Cons: You do not get as many choices for size, design, or shape. The molds are very costly to make. A designer only has so many designs available to choose from limiting your options. The shells are made in factories and delivered so are limited to the size of trucks which are not much wider than 16 feet.

The In-Ground Concrete Pool

  • The Pros: You get the most freedom in terms of design for this option. You can choose space and shape based on the backyard space available. Design options are unlimited. Vanishing edges, tanning ledges, or a beach entry if you desire. These also add value to the home where other types may not.
  • The Cons: The most notable drawback is cost. Concrete pools are expensive to maintain. You need to re-surface every 10 or 20 years which is not cheap. The porous surface allows algae to grow so you need a routine cleaning and maintenance schedule to keep it in top condition.


Whatever pool type is best for you will depend on your needs, budget, and the space available to use. Using this guide can help you narrow the choice and you can reach out to us for any additional questions you may have.