FIRST GO TO TOWN HALL
Legally, a homeowner needs to acquire a building permit to install an above ground pool. The time required to attain a permit can range from 1 day to 2 months in some extreme circumstances. Many homeowners are surprised at how involved the process can be, so get started early so you are not waiting for your permit after you have your pool.
Each town has different lot types with different setbacks; the setbacks determine where you are able to place the pool on your property. The setbacks are the minimum distance from property lines that the pool can be located. The town hall will also inform you of minimum distances from your house, shed, septic system, well, wetlands, and any other object of concern. Once you know this information you can determine what size pool you can purchase and where to place it.
After your trip to town hall, the next step is to mark off where the pool cannot be installed in your yard. Now that you know where the pool is not going to be, consider these next topics to determine where the pool is going to be. Where is the sun/shade located in your yard? Where do the leaves in your yard fall, will they all end up in the pool? Will you be blocking access to your yard for trucks, machines, lawnmowers, or anything else expected to need access to your yard. Do you want to walk 200’ to the pool; or exit your house, walk onto a deck, and into your pool?
Another important factor is tree roots. If the pool is installed within a tree’s root system’s reach, expect to feel them under the liner. It usually takes a while, but roots like to grow between the liner and the material used for installation. If you really like a spot, do not let this deter you from placing the pool near trees, as the process usually takes a few years to occur, and the roots can always be removed during your next liner replacement.
Water flowing around the pool once it is installed can cause major problems. I always suggest running plastic around the bottom of the pool to avoid the most common water problems. If there are any downspouts or curtain drains aimed toward the pool, redirect them. A sloped backyard will also send water towards your pool. Usually the plastic will not allow problems to occur, but in severe circumstances, you may want to install a curtain drain. In a very few instances, I have seen areas with a high water table ruin the pool bottom. If you have large areas in your yard where water collects, try to avoid installing the pool in these areas.