The Legend is calling on AQUA readers to share your craziest, funniest stories from the working...
The second annual Million Dollar Pool Design Challenge is back, with entries due August 15. The...
New this year from Pentair is the Master Service Program, a tiered incentive program to reward...
Of the industry's three main segments — builders, servicers and retailers — those who design, engineer and construct new pools and spas are by far the most dependent on new consumers entering the market. While service and retail companies can thrive on aftermarket sales, builders largely rely on the decision to install a new pool and/or spa to keep the home fires burning.
Back in the depths of recession, many builders muddled through with repairs and minor renovations, and today, fixing and remodeling old pools remains a significant portion of the work. But a slowly healing economy has led to steady but modest gains in new pool construction over the past five years.
Anecdotally, builders report optimism for the coming year, a hopeful outlook reflected in this year's SOI Builders Survey in which a strong majority indicated they feel encouraged by their company's prospects in 2016.
When asked which factor had the greatest impact on that outlook, 37 percent cited consumer confidence, folliiowed by 22 percent who answered that the strengthening housing market was the most important market driver.
Neither response is terribly surprising given that both consumer confidence and housing statistics are improving, and both are keys in motivating homeowners to buy. According to the Conference Board, the Consumer Confidence Index in March this year was at 92.2, compared to its most recent nadir in February 2008 of 25.3.
The housing market is another bright spot with growth of 6.4 percent in 2015 combined with a projected growth of 3 to 4 percent this year, according to Kiplinger.
Also encouraging is Business Insider's report that home inventories have steadily hovered around five months (the estimated time required to sell the current inventory at the asking price). That level is believed to be optimum for both buyers and sellers. That good news, however, is tempered by the fact that home prices remain 19 percent below their pre-recession peaks.
Other factors impacting builders have been the drought in the Western U.S., the fall of fuel prices, availability of skilled or at least trainable workers and, as always, the weather.
The bottom line is that the builder segment of the pool and spa industry appears to be on a steady, if not dynamic rise, and as you'll see in the following survey analysis, builders encompass a tremendous amount of diversity.
If the survey results are any kind of reliable indication, the state of the pool and spa construction industry is working in the fertile soil of a solid market.
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The past few years have seen a steady revival in the pool and spa industry. After a recession shuttered many businesses and left others bruised, the economy gradually recovered. Slowly, pool and spa pros were dusting themselves off and getting stronger once again.
Consumers are in a better position this year, which Charles Schwab credits to smaller debts and hourly earnings that rose by a modest but welcome 2.5 percent in 2015. In addition, fuel costs swiftly fell, further lining...
In 1991, the residential inground swimming pool industry began an impressive 14-year run-up, going from 97,000 annual new pools to 176,000. To put that in perspective, the 2.1 million inground pools built during that period nearly equaled the entire number of pools built in the U.S. since the industry's emergence in the 1950s. In fact, nearly 40 percent of all inground pools today were built during that period.
But as everyone knows, the party ended in 2006. Over the next four years...
The Legend is calling on AQUA readers to share your craziest, funniest stories from the working world of pool and spa pros! Maybe you’ve got a customer that drinks from her own pool. Maybe you’ve got a route dog that can empty a skimmer basket. The best stories will be featured in the September issue of AQUA. If your story is chosen you will receive lifetime Legendary status, AQUA glory and some sweet swag.
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The second annual Million Dollar Pool Design Challenge is back, with entries due August 15. The contest, created by builders Mike Farley and Reid Schindler, challenges designers to take a real-life scenario and design a lavish poolscape with a $1 million budget. The winner will be named at the PSP Expo in November and take home a $5,000 cash prize.
Last year’s debut program was by all measures a resounding...