How much does a gunite pool cost?

Photo by Mikhail Nilov on

If you go to a fiberglass pool company website, you can find a list of sizes, shapes and maybe in some cases you can find a list of prices (of course this won’t include excavation and other extras), but how much does a gunite pool cost? Let me tell you that you won’t find a pool company that offers this service with a list of prices and I will explain you why.

Unlike all the pre made options (no matter the material), a gunite pool will have infinite variations because they are custom made, which means that the owners will decide the size, shape, type of tile, plaster, coping, size of patio, and water features like waterfall, grotto, slide, sun shelf, and so forth.

The other factor you need to consider when thinking about a custom gunite swimming pool is that is usually in ground, therefore, excavation is required and in San Antonio and Hill Country you will find different kind of surfaces, some more rocky than others, which affects the final price.

But let’s have an example of a swimming space with regular excavations process, for example a 12′ x 15′ rectangular shape, with the best equipment, first quality materials, cost efficient with nothing else additional. During this summer 2022, considering the crazy gas prices and the current inflation that has affected everything in the construction business, a plunge bath with this characteristics would cost close to $60,000 dollars in San Antonio and its surroundings. I don’t want to talk about US national price because every city and state is different and maybe in California you’ll find a more expensive space and in other cities can be cheaper.

Would you like waterfall or grotto, maybe a sun shelf? That’s extra. Basically a pool can be easily more expensive than a house if you think about that some of them are built to become a paradise inside the residence.

But of course, some of the features can wait, like a hot tub or a waterfall, but LED lights or any feature that requires electrical work or plumbing has to be donde from the very beginning.

The bright side is that a custom gunite pool will last many, many years and you can always update it, something that won’t happen with a pre made plunge. It’s a difficult choice, but if you and your family are planning to build your own water space, contact us and we can talk more about the design and your own needs and after this we’ll be happy to give you a quote.

Gunite vs Fiberglass

Cristina Moreno-Garcia
(March 2022)

A custom gunite swimming pool is always unique.

Before I was in the pool business, my husband and I were thinking about building our own pool and when we were doing some research online we realized there were a big amount of companies promising fiberglass swimming pools were better quality and cheaper than gunite ones… and we believed it.

We contacted a local company, signed a contract to have a simple rectangular pool. Soon enough the contractor brought a pool that was not the shape we wanted, but we decided to play cool and accept it. The second problem we faced started after the contractor started filling up the pool with water: turns out the shape of the precious object started to change in some parts. He explained that it was normal and that was a reason for not getting a rectangular shape. Nonetheless, there were several issues with the contractor and we ended up without a pool and a backyard that looked like a war zone.

Maybe after this terrible experience I started doing a lot of research and we decided to spend more money and get a gunite custom swimming pool with a spa and sun shelf, designed for our backyard, with the size we had in mind originally, instead of adjusting to what a fiberglass company offers.

Now we are a happy family with a beautiful swimming pool and I wanted to share this experience in the company page so other people don’t make the same mistake we made by hiring a contractor without proven experience and saying only beautiful things about fiberglass.

Gunite pros

  • You get the shape you want and the size you want
  • Option to add water features like sun shelf, colorful LED jets, bubblers, waterfalls, special designs on the bottom of the pool
  • You can choose almost any kind of shape and color of tile for the waterline
  • You can choose different plaster textures, with more or less sparkle and the plaster comes in a lot of colors, from white to black
  • There are pools filled with salt water
  • The swimming pool will last a lifetime, with proper care and maintenance

Gunite cons

  • Initial investment is higher than with the other kind of pools
  • It needs renovations from time to time
  • It needs to be kept clean to avoid algae growth

Fiberglass pros

  • Comes in different sizes and shapes
  • Easy to clean
  • It costs less than gunite pools

Fiberglass cons

  • Companies offer some sizes or limited shapes
  • Some companies offer more durability than others, but it won’t last as long as gunite
  • Pools only come in certain colors