Pool vs Swim Spa: 4 Solid Reasons People Are Choosing Swim Spas

Two little girls have fun in a swim spa

A pool used to be a prized home addition and a symbol of luxury. Visions of pool parties with the kids doing cannon balls in the deep end while dad grilled were part of the American Dream.

After the costs of installation and years maintenance added up, however, many families wished they’d never taken the plunge in the first place.

You don’t have to give up on your dream of water recreation and relaxation in the comfort of your own back yard though! A swim spa can offer you all the perks of a pool — and none of the downside.

Let’s take a look at four big considerations for buying a pool or swim spa to see how they stack up.   


On of the first questions most people naturally ask about a pool or swim spa is “How much?” 

Price is a big consideration, and the cost difference between the two is significant. The average swim spa installation will cost you about half that of a pool. 

And don’t forget “hidden fees” that come with a pool such as increased insurance costs or installing a fence (a requirement in some areas). 

Lastly, a pool takes an average of 2–4 weeks to install. A swim spa will only take an afternoon once a solid surface is in place.


You absolutely cannot overlook space considerations when it comes to installing a pool or swim spa. Obviously, a swim spa will have much smaller space requirements than a pool, making it more flexible and convenient.

You can install a swim spa inside or outside, above ground or inground, or even on a reinforced deck.

Thanks to its smaller size, a swim spa is also mobile, so you don’t have to lose your investment. If you move, you can choose to move your swim spa to the new location. 

Think that smaller footprint means you can’t have friends enjoy it with you? Depending on the size and model you go with, swim spas can hold anywhere from one to 10 people or more!

Operation & maintenance

One of the biggest gripes long-term pool owners have is the cost to operate and maintain their pool. The time and money it takes to keep a pool running properly is significant.

Skimming, brushing, vacuuming, and monitoring chemicals all need to be done at least once a week, and that’s just the basics of maintaining a pool. Some people hire pool companies to take care of these tasks for them, but the fees ($80–$200 per week on average) are also a large burden. 

Swim spas use less chemicals, less water, and less time to maintain. They are also far cheaper to heat. That adds up to huge savings for your time and your wallet.

Getting a return on your investment

The first thing that comes to mind for most people when talking about a return on their investment is resale value.

Will a pool increase your home’s value or recoup its costs when you sell? Unfortunately not.

Anyone, outside of a pool salesman, will tell you that pools are a terrible investment. They are typically appraised at half their original value — far less once they’re over 10 years old — and in the Midwest only increase your home’s resale value by six or seven percent at best. Even with a small increase in home value, after the cost of installation and years of maintenance, you’re likely to lose money on the deal.

Swim spas, on the other hand, are much better at retaining their original value, don’t scare away potential home buyers with the hassle or liability of a pool, and can even go with you when you move if you want.  

Let’s not forget return on investment in terms of use. A swim spa is a pool, hot tub, and gym all in one compact package that you can use constantly. In the Midwest, you’re lucky to be able to use a pool four months out of the year. A swim spa can be enjoyed year-round.

Choose your spa

Swim spas come in a huge variety sizes and features, so you can customize it exactly the way you want. Come visit one of our showrooms at Cal Spas of Minnesota and find the perfect swim spa for you.