Inground Pool
Costs & Options

Options And costs for Inground Pools
In Rochester NY | Monroe County NY

thinking about
installing a pool ?

Maybe your not sure
where to begin ?

Hi, my name is Bill Carr, owner of Woodstream Landscape Inc. I am a NYSNLA landscape Designer in Rochester NY. I have been designing and installing high quality Landscape projects throughout Monroe County, and beyond for over 25 years.

Rochester homeowners starting an inground pool project will find advice on this website that is useful, because the majority of the information is specific to our area.

This page has a breakdown of inground pool costs & options you will find in the Rochester,NY Area.

Design your overall backyard first

You are about to invest in a long lasting outdoor project. It’s important that you Invest time in the design phase, It’s a small commitment early on in the process, so that you can make good decisions and avoid surprises later.

If you can design your pool to be integrated into your overall backyard living space, it becomes a valuable asset. Visually, it “reads” as a captivating water feature highlighting a multi functional backyard environment.

It is no longer perceived as “just a pool” and when you go to sell your house, that whole outdoor “experience” is seen as an asset, not a liability.

Inground Pool

The two types of inground pools we mainly see here in Rochester, NY are vinyl lined pools and concrete/gunite pools.

There are some fiberglass pools being installed locally, but not as many as you might find in other markets.

One thing I’ve never liked about fiberglass pools, is that they seem ‘narrow’ or proportionately ‘off’ to me.

Gunite Pools

A concrete or Gunite pool is made of sand, water, & cement. The Gunite is applied in layers on top of a rebar framework using a special spray gun that allows pool builders to spray the concrete onto vertical surfaces. Once ‘set’ a pool finish is applied (usually plaster).

The main benefits of gunite are that your pool is completely customizable and long lasting.

The main drawback for Gunite is the overall cost. It will cost more money to maintain and the initial build will usually run about twice as much as a comparable Vinyl lined pool.

Gunite, Shotcrete, or Concrete Pool

Vinyl Lined Pools

Vinyl lined pools are are built with a concrete bottom and steel (or composite) side walls. The walls are supported by bracing that sets in an ‘overdig’ area around the perimeter of the pool.

The overdig is covered by the 3′ pool deck that comes with your standard pool package. A liner is installed inside of the overall concrete/steel wall structure.

Vinyl lined pools are very customizable as far as shape, and can be outfitted with a variety of options and custom water features.

We typically see Vinyl pools in the Rochester area so we’ll be talking about Costs and Options for those.

Vinyl lined inground pool drawing. Showing Steel wall pool components. illustration
Vinyl lined inground pool drawing. Showing Steel wall pool components.

Inground Pool installation

Starting Cost in the Rochester area

We typically see Vinyl pools being installed in the Rochester area, so we’ll be talking about Costs and Options for those.

Inground Pool Standard Package Price

Here is the base price you will typically find for a vinyl lined inground pool installation here in Rochester, NY.

About 90% of the pool projects I see start at this price range, unless your homesite is filled with trees, inaccessible, or sits on shallow bedrock.

Your standard pool package will run about $25,000-$30,000. That $5,000 difference has to do with your selection of size and shape for your pool.

For that price you will basically get everything you need to start swimming. The one thing that is not included in the base price, but you’ll need (other than a fence) is electric.

Electric service is quoted separately for each install, so it’s not included in the base price you see advertised. It will run about $1,500 in most cases.

Choosing Options

Options in large part, will determine the cost of your inground pool. Knowing about these options gives you an idea of what it will potentially cost and what a pool contractor is going to talk about.

You’ll get some options for upgrading the basic features included in the standard package.

You also have quite a few options which are not included in the standard package. These “extras” ( like a heater) add to the cost of your standard package.

Some upgrades or options would need to be done with your initial build, where others could be added later in case you wanted to defer the initial cost and spread it out over time. 

Standard Pool Package

Below are the standard package features that typically come with your pool. I’ve included the common upgrades I see, and what it will cost.

Inground Pool Liner example.
Pool Liner

There are color selections to choose from, it’s best to see actual examples. The liner selection effects the perception of the pools water color.

Any upgrades here would have very little bearing on price but play a big role in atmosphere.

Cross section showing 'built in' pool steps
Upgraded 'Built in' pool steps
Pool Steps

Usually 6’-8’ wide. For the standard package: They are white plastic and will extend out from the main body of the pool (at the shallow end).

You can upgrade these so they are built inside the pool body with pool liner covering them (Built in steps). 

  • upgrading to ‘built in’ steps runs about $2,000 – $3,000
  • You can get the standard steps in grey with grey aluminum coping for about $500.
Pool Coping

The standard coping is white aluminum. You can get a different color (Grey) but I mostly see either the standard white or homeowners upgrading to a concrete cantilevered coping.

  • Cantilevered concrete coping runs about $2000 extra.
  • Grey aluminum coping with grey standard step runs about $500 extra.
Clean and clear pool water for an Inground pool with a salt water sanitation system
Pool Sanitation

Over the last 5-6 years I’ve seen the trend switch from traditional chlorine systems to salt water sanitation systems.

Basically, you add salt in the beginning of the season and the salt system produces its own chlorine all season long ( you would probably replenish after a hard rain or when backwashing), so there is less maintenance than with a chlorine system.

The upgrade to a saltwater system is around $1,500

Standard Solar Cover

This is the blue bubble wrap tarp that comes with your standard package. If you have a heater, you might not use it except maybe in the beginning and the end of the season. It does help extend the swim season.

Most homeowners consider these covers a nuisance. Also, I would not start out upgrading to a reel cart for your initial pool build. You might find the whole solar cover thing to be a hassle so don’t put money here just yet.

Pool Electric

You’ll probably have a few upgrade options here (in addition to the $1,500 we laid out above)

  • add a few GFI outlets near the pool so you don’t have extension cords everywhere. The cost is minimal while the electrician is already on site. Figure around $200.
  • You’ll have some extra cost if you are doing an electric heater. Even if you postpone it, do the electrical for it with the initial pool build.

Extra Options for your pool

Below are extra features that do not come with the standard pool package.

Many of the extra options below can be installed at a later date which allows you to put off some of your initial cost.


A heater will extend the swim season as well as maximizing the comfort level during the swim season. You will get two options for installing a heater:

  1. Gas Heater is around $2,500 inc gas line. It burns natural fuel to heat the water. It costs less to install but more to run. Also, it tends to heat up the water faster.
  2. Electric Heat pump is around $3800 + extra electrical cost. It condenses heat from the air to heat your water
Pool Heater Example
Pool Heater Example

Security Cover

We see the majority of homeowners upgrade to a security cover. They provide superior safety, way less maintenance, and they look far better than the standard package winter tarp cover. It is my number one upgrade suggestion.

  • These run about $2,000-$3000 depending on pool size & shape.
  • I can’t emphasize enough how much better they look from inside the house.
  • With these covers, you won’t have the constant nightmare of trying to siphon stagnant water off the standard winter tarp.
Inground Pool Security Cover Example
Inground Pool Security Cover

Water Features for inground Pools

There are quite a few different water feature options. Some of these are custom built, so price will vary.

Water Features

The options that are installed outside the pool (water falls, slides) can usually be done later if need be.

The integrated features (Deck jets, swim outs) would likely have to be done with your initial pool installation.

  • Deck Jets run about $250 each
  • Inside the pool features ( like a Buddy Seat, Swimout, Sun Ledge) these seem to average out around $2,500 each.
  • WaterSlide ($3,500-$4,500 +/-) depending on the size.
  • Diving board ( $1,000ish )
  • Sheer Descent waterfalls  The water drops from the source directly into the pool. These can run anywhere from $2,500-$10,000.  In large part, the cost  depends on the type of sheer wall that is installed. You don’t need to spend a fortune. You can create a smaller sheer wall and scale it with landscape planting to create a pleasing proportion.
  • Waterfalls/ Outcropping These are when you see multiple layers of rock or boulders. The waterfall or stream will fall onto one layer and then the next  before dropping into the pool. They can be elaborate & expensive. They are rarely built with proper scale and proportion so I don’t think the cost justifies the look.

pool waterfall

Don't Make this mistake:

It’s usually better to go with a small sheer descent type falls. You will get a much better bang for the buck. Use that savings on more impactful features.

  • The typical rock “heap” you’ll see is hard to soften with plantings, the individual stones/rocks used are almost always way too small to scale the feature properly.
  • It is typical to see unnatural, small, flat stones endlessly stacked hoping to achieve a balance that is never going to happen.
  • To put it nicely…………These features usually seem out of place.
Typical round, small stone used.... leading to an unnatural looking water feature
Don't Do This

Fence & Patio
costs for inground Pools

inground pool installation | Costs and Options | in Rochester NY

Pool Fence Cost

what to expect

You will need to install a fence to enclose your pool. You will want to plan the layout of the fence in order to maximize your space.

A fence in Rochester usually runs about $26-$30 per linear foot. You will probably want two gates. The cost about $400-$800 each depending on the width. Single gates are 3′ or 4′ and double gates are 6′ or 8′.

Pool Fence Layout

Don't Make this mistake:

A common regret from homeowners who have a pool, is that they minimized the amount of pool fence, resulting in a poolside environment that “feels” very tight and restricted.

Don’t cutback on the amount of fence just to save a few hundred dollars. I see this done all the time, mostly because there isn’t enough forethought during the planning stage.

You are not saving enough money to justify how severely you are compromising the overall look and “feel” of your space.

It’s preferable to have generous proportions for your poolside environment (meaning a bigger fenced in area). The area is then balanced with skillful planting design using the principle of mass and void to create a pleasing, balanced environment.

Don't Make this mistake:

The fenced in area is too tight
The fenced in area is too tight. It creates a whole different "feel". Space is not really functional

Pool Patio

Planning for your patio space
inground pool project Costs & Options

“Studies show that when using their pool, the average homeowner spends 85% of their time on the patio and not in the actual pool.”

30 %
Time spent on patio
600 SQ'
avg pool patio size
$ 9
Average price per sq.'

Pool Patio Cost

what to expect

Basically, you will have 3 options when it comes to the material you use for your pool patio. Each has advantages and disadvantages.

On a separate page, I will cover all 3 types of materials used in our area. This is about what it will cost on average in the Rochester area.

  • A Broomed Finish Concrete Patio in Rochester usually runs about $10-$12 per Square foot.
  • A Stamped Concrete Patio in Rochester usually runs about $14-$16 per Square foot.
  • A Paver Patio in Rochester usually runs about $18-$25 per Square foot.

Planning your
Pool Patio

Your patio is an essential part of your pool project. Studies show that when you are outside using the pool approximately 85% of your time is spent relaxing or socializing on the patio and not in the pool.

Take the time to plan out your living area so you end up with comfortable spaces. I often see extra concrete that was poured for patio or lounging space, but the dimensions are off by a few feet which causes the intended space to be much less functional. 

your cost

Total cost for an Inground Pool Project in Rochester, NY

You can expect to spend around $40,000- $50,000 for your inground pool project, including the fence and extra patio space.

Options and upgrades for the pool itself and for your surrounding living area could add another $15,000-$25,000 .

Quick ballpark example: 

  • Standard pool package & electric is around $29,000
  • Fence (maybe $5,000)
  • Extra patio (maybe $6,000-$10,000)
  • Upgrades – Let’s say a heater & security cover ($5,000-$6,000)
Landscape architect holding a landscape design for a new yard

Contact Us

Vision | artistry | 25 Years of experience

Woodstream landscape

A design oriented landscape company in Rochester NY

Pool Design

We offer exceptional Pool Design Services, presenting homeowners in the Rochester area with a plan that makes the most of their property.

Extensive time and detail is put into our plans so that during the construction process there are as few unexpected issues as possible.

It is for this reason we charge a fee for design work.

A 2D landscape design for your overall backyard costs $599 and includes:

  • Pool patio and Hardscape design & takeoffs
  • Planting and privacy layout
  • Pool placement
  • Pool elevation & grade
  • Pool fence layout
  • Setback & easement callouts for permit process

More information:

Research data is used by architects and designers to plan residential and commercial spaces. Here is some data for planning your patio.

Outdoor living space continues to Rank as the #1 home design trend

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