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Swimming pools For a Small Backyard

Designing a Small Backyard with a Swimming Pool

The average pool size has decreased over the past 15 years, along with the size of the average Sydney backyard.

Many of our swimming pool clients are opting to have smaller pools due to having smaller back yards, smaller budgets or it is easier for pool maintenance.
We have seen an increase in the demand for plunge pools for the three reasons above.

Other factors that can influence the size of your pool includes what structures are already in your yard and these include:

  • Placement of existing buildings and structures such as carports or patios
  • Large trees
  • Water and sewer lines that go through your property
  • Easements
  • Slopes or terraces
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A plunge pool is a small pool which is defined by a number of characteristics:

  • Usually between 2 and 6 metres long, although it can be up to 7 meters in length
  • Between 2 and 3.5 metres wide
  • Often no deeper than 1.5 metres, although this can vary
  • Has built in seating areas to lounge on.

We must always take in to consideration the location of trees, utilities (water and electricity) and existing structures on your property to find the best position for your pool.

Please note – All pools and spa baths MUST have pool fencing.
Your Pool builder will be well versed with the laws and requirements, so that they can help you design the pool of your dreams that will will be legally compliant
Fences must follow the Australian Standard AS 1926.1 – 2012
This stipulates that a pool fence shall be not less than 1.2m high all the way around.
Note: If the pool barrier is not 1.2m high all the way around or only in some sections then you need to seek immediate advice from a Licensed Builder, Pool Technician or Fencing Contractor.
Read more about pool safety laws here

Small Backyard Considerations

Designing a small backyard comes with a unique set of challenges. Limited space can make it difficult to incorporate all the elements you desire while maintaining functionality. Some common challenges include:

  1. Space Constraints: The limited area can restrict the size and layout of your outdoor space, requiring careful consideration of each element’s placement.
  2. Privacy Concerns: Small backyards are often surrounded by neighboring properties, necessitating creative solutions to enhance privacy and create a secluded atmosphere.
  3. Lack of Greenery: With less space available, it can be challenging to incorporate ample greenery and landscaping elements, which are essential for creating an inviting and visually appealing outdoor space.
  4. Storage Limitations: Small backyards may lack storage areas for pool equipment, outdoor furniture, and other items, requiring innovative storage solutions to keep the space clutter-free.

Benefits of Incorporating a Swimming Pool

Despite the challenges, incorporating a swimming pool into your small backyard can bring numerous benefits:

  1. Maximizing Space: A well-designed swimming pool can make the most of limited space, serving as a focal point and providing a refreshing retreat for relaxation and recreation.
  2. Increased Property Value: A well designed swimming pool can enhance the value of your property, making it an attractive feature for potential buyers.
  3. Entertainment and Recreation: A swimming pool provides endless opportunities for outdoor enjoyment, whether it’s hosting poolside gatherings, swimming laps, or simply lounging by the water.
  4. Improved Health and Well-being: Swimming is a low-impact exercise that offers various health benefits, including improved cardiovascular fitness, increased muscle strength, and stress reduction.

Assessing Your Space

Before diving into the design process, it’s essential to assess your small backyard to determine the best approach for incorporating a swimming pool. This involves evaluating the size and shape of your backyard and determining the ideal pool type and size.

Evaluating the Size and Shape of Your Backyard

We have to consider the dimensions, boundaries, and any existing structures or features that may impact the pool design. Understanding the size and shape of your backyard will help you understand what the requirements are during the pool planning and placement phase.

Take note of any potential obstacles, such as trees, utility lines, or uneven terrain, that may affect the pool installation process. These considerations will be crucial in determining the feasibility and layout of your small backyard pool.

Also consider that a front yard can also be used to build a swimming pool.
With the right design and fencing solutions, you can build a pool almost anywhere on your property.

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Determining the Ideal Pool Type and Size

Once you have a clear understanding of your backyard’s size and shape, it’s time to determine the ideal pool type and size that will fit harmoniously into your space.

In-ground Pools

In-ground pools offer a range of design possibilities and can be customised to suit the specific dimensions of your small backyard. They can be constructed in various shapes, such as rectangular, kidney-shaped, or freeform, depending on your preferences and available space.

Above-ground Pools

If space is limited or if you prefer a more flexible pool option, above-ground pools can be a great choice for small backyards. These pools are available in various sizes and shapes, and their installation is generally quicker and less invasive compared to in-ground pools.

Above-ground pools can be placed directly on the ground or partially recessed into the ground, depending on your preferences and the layout of your backyard. Remember to consider the necessary clearance space around the pool for safety and maintenance purposes.

Plunge Pools

Plunge pools are a popular choice for small backyards, offering a compact and stylish option for cooling off and relaxation. These pools are typically smaller in size and are designed for wading and relaxation rather than swimming laps. Plunge pools can be a perfect fit for limited space while still providing the benefits of having a pool in your backyard.

By evaluating the size and shape of your backyard and determining the ideal pool type and size, you can lay a solid foundation for the pool design process. Keep in mind that consulting with a professional landscaper or pool designer can provide valuable insights and expertise in creating a functional and visually appealing pool area. For more small backyard design ideas and inspiration, check out our article on small backyard landscaping ideas.

Pool Placement and Layout

When incorporating a swimming pool into a small backyard, strategic placement and creative design ideas are essential to maximize the use of limited space. In this section, we will explore how you can make the most of your small backyard by considering pool placement and layout.

Maximising Space with Smart Placement

The strategy that is typically used is to position the pool along the side or corner of the yard, or up against the home which will leave a large open space somewhere in the landscape design.
This creates the illusion of a larger area, making the backyard feel more spacious.
Another option is to incorporate the pool into an existing structure, such as a patio or deck.
By integrating the pool with other outdoor elements, you can create a cohesive and functional backyard pool surrounds.

Creative Design Ideas for Small Pools

Pool landscaping or pool surrounds still requires a touch of creativity to make the space visually appealing and functional. Here are a few design ideas to inspire your small backyard pool project:

  1. Vertical Gardens: Utilise vertical space by incorporating lush greenery along the walls or fences surrounding the pool area. Vertical gardens not only add a touch of natural beauty but also help to create a sense of privacy in a confined space.
  2. Multi-purpose Pool Decks: Maximise functionality by designing decking that can serve multiple purposes. Timber decks look great when built-in seating or storage solutions are part of the deck build and design. You can read more about decks vs paving here
  3. Water Features: Enhance the aesthetics of your small backyard pool by incorporating water features such as fountains or waterfalls. These features add ambiance as well as visual focal points.
  4. Compact Pool Shapes: Opt for pool designs with compact shapes, such as rectangular or geometric shapes, that are better suited for small spaces. These shapes maximize the available area while still providing enough space for swimming and relaxation.

Remember, when designing a small backyard pool, it’s crucial to strike a balance between functionality and looks.
In the next section, we will explore different types of pools that are well-suited for small backyards, including in-ground pools, above-ground pools, and plunge pools.

Choosing the Right Pool Type

Here are three pool types that work well in small backyards: in-ground pools, above-ground pools, and plunge pools.

In-ground Pools

In-ground pools are a popular choice for small backyards as they can be fully customised to fit the available space. These pools are built directly into the ground, offering a seamless and visually appealing addition to your backyard oasis. In-ground pools come in various shapes and sizes, allowing you to design a pool that complements the dimensions of your small backyard.

Pool TypeAdvantages
In-ground Pools– Customisable shape and size
– Blends seamlessly with the landscape
– Can include additional features like waterfalls or spas
– Long-lasting and durable

Above-ground Pools

If you’re looking for a more cost-effective and flexible option, above-ground pools are worth considering. These pools are installed above the ground and can be dismantled or relocated if needed. Above-ground pools come in a range of sizes and shapes, allowing you to choose one that fits perfectly in your small backyard. They often require less maintenance than in-ground pools and can be a great temporary or permanent solution.

Pool TypeAdvantages
Above-ground Pools– Cost-effective compared to in-ground pools
– Easy installation and maintenance
– Portable and can be relocated
– Versatile design options available

Plunge Pools

Perfect for small backyards, inground plunge pools offer a compact and luxurious swimming experience. These pools are typically smaller in size, designed for relaxation and cooling off rather than extensive swimming. Plunge pools are a great choice if you have limited space but still want to enjoy the benefits of a pool. They can be customised to include features like seating areas or hydrotherapy jets, creating a tranquil oasis in your backyard.

Pool TypeAdvantages
Plunge Pools– Compact size ideal for small backyards
– Relaxing and cooling off experience
– Customisable features available
– Lower maintenance and cost compared to larger pools

Choosing the right pool type for your small backyard depends on various factors such as your budget, available space, and personal preferences.

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Enhancing the Pool Area

Once you have incorporated a swimming pool into your small backyard, it’s time to enhance the pool area and make it a truly inviting space. Landscaping solutions and the addition of poolside features and accessories can transform your small backyard into a stunning oasis.

Poolside Features and Accessories

To make your small backyard pool area even more enjoyable, consider incorporating poolside features and accessories. These additions can enhance the functionality and aesthetics of your pool space.

Here are some poolside features and accessories to consider:

  • Pool Deck: Create a designated area around your pool with a pool deck. A deck not only provides a space for lounging and sunbathing but can also serve as a seamless transition between the pool and the rest of your backyard.
  • Outdoor Furniture: Choose practical and space-efficient outdoor furniture, such as foldable chairs or modular seating, to maximise the use of your pool area. Opt for weather-resistant materials that can withstand exposure to the elements.
  • Shade Structures: Building a small pergola is a great way to add a functional area next to a pool. It creates shade, a decked area for seating and we can also add inbuilt storage into the pergola design. There is nothing worse than an usable swimming pool due to lack of shade on a scorching summers day
  • Poolside Storage: Storage solutions, such as deck boxes or storage benches, to keep pool toys, floats, and other accessories organized and out of sight when not in use.
  • Pool Lighting: Enhance the ambiance and safety of your pool area with pool lighting. Consider installing underwater LED lights or landscape lighting to create a captivating and inviting atmosphere.

By incorporating these landscaping solutions and poolside features, you can create a visually appealing and functional pool area within your small backyard.

Safety Considerations for Small Backyard Pools

Australian safety requirements for a swimming pool are some of the strictest in the world and for good reason as safety should always be a top priority.
All swimming pools in NSW must be registered and the pool will be inspected to make sure all the requirements are met around fencing, gates and safety signs

  1. Fencing and Barriers: Install a secure fence or barrier around your pool to prevent unauthorized access, especially if you have young children or pets. Ensure that the fence meets the local safety regulations and includes self-closing and self-latching gates.
  2. Pool Covers: Use a pool cover when the pool is not in use to prevent accidental falls and keep debris out of the water. Choose a cover that is strong, durable, and specifically designed for pool safety.
  3. Pool Alarms: If you have young children or inquisitive pets and wildlife, consider installing pool alarms that can detect movement in the water surface or around the pool area. These alarms can provide an extra layer of safety and alert you to any potential danger.
  4. Supervision: Never leave children or inexperienced swimmers unattended in or near the pool. Assign a responsible adult as a designated pool supervisor and enforce strict pool rules to ensure safe swimming practices.
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Choosing Your pool Builder

Choosing a pool builder who can listen to what you want is vital when planning a pool for a small area. By using a custom pool builder, you will be able to add a pool that will perfectly fit into your garden design.
Oasis Landscaping Projects are qualified to do do the entire project, from the design, pool build and installation and the surrounding landscaping and fencing work.
Get in contact today to see what options will work with your home and lifestyle.

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