Why Shouldn’t You Have a Swimming Pool in a Rental Property?

October 2023

Read Time: 3 Minutes

With summer on its way rental properties with swimming pools sound appealing, but are pools in rental properties really a good idea? We take a look at the downsides.

Who Looks after the Pool in a Rental Property?

First up, when a swimming pool is included in a tenancy, the responsibility for its maintenance largely falls on the landlord. Pool water must be kept up to standard, which involves water testing, addition of chemicals, debris removal and the monitoring of filtration and heating systems. From time to time, the pool itself will also require maintenance.

Under the Residential Tenancies Act, landlords are responsible for the maintenance of the premises and tenants are required to keep the premises reasonably clean and tidy. As such, the landlord will usually be the one responsible for the overall maintenance of the pool. It is important to include who has responsibility for pool maintenance in your tenancy agreement.

Read more in our article Who Looks After the Pool in a Rental Property

Will Offering a Swimming Pool Actually Attract Tenants?

While offering a swimming pool will likely attract some tenants, it may equally turn other tenants away. Safety concerns, increased rental costs and fluctuating seasonal demand are some of the cons of having pools in rental properties.

If a pool isn’t already present in an investment property, it is probably not worth installing one. The initial cost of installation will impact upon the return on your investment. On top of the cost of installation, landlords will also have to ensure their pool is properly fenced, in line with the Building (Pools) Amendment Act 2016.

Many young families may prefer a simple, flat lawn to a swimming pool and maintenance will be much easier, too.

Read our Gardening Tips for Rental Properties

What are the Rules Around Tenants Installing Swimming Pools?

If your tenants wish to install a pool at the property – including a portable pool or a spa pool – they will need to get the permission of you first as their landlord.

In line with the law, all pools, including portable pools, above-ground pools, in-ground pools and spa pools must have a protective barrier in place to ensure the safety of children.

What Can Go Wrong When Tenants Install Their Own Pools?

In 2019, an Auckland couple was directed by the Tenancy Tribunal to pay nearly $2,000 in compensation to their landlord after a large swimming pool they installed without permission left the rental property’s backyard like "a bog".

The compensation was awarded due to the damage done to the grass beneath what was described as a “huge above-ground swimming pool”.  Remedial work was required when the couple moved out, and the whole backyard had to be dug up.

How Can Landlords and Tenants Resolve Disputes?

Tenancy disputes can be resolved in a variety of ways including self-resolution, FastTrack resolution, mediation and Tenancy Tribunal Hearings.

Find out about the process in our article on Tenancy Disputes and the Tenancy Tribunal Process.

Get Expert Advice

If you’d like some further advice on renting out your property or resolving disputes contact our Property Management team on pm@crockers.co.nz or chat on 09 623 5952.


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