Grand luxury-style homes and backyard amenities are moving out of the way as a fad of the past. A new generation of homebuyers is coming up the ranks, and they are bringing a minimalist style and optimized modern aesthetic to the real estate scene with tiny homes that prioritize clean energy and efficiency.
In a chic combination with tiny homes, new homebuyers are interested in maximizing their space by including a tiny pool for exercise, play, sunbathing, or simply a cool aesthetic. Some tiny pools are designed for small children to splash around in, while others are made for rigorous exercise and sports training. A plunge pool offers a sweet spot to take a full-body dip and cool off in the hot summer afternoon, while an above-ground pool is perfect for evening cocktail hour with friends and neighbors. Some homeowners even incorporate temperature controls that allow their tiny pool to convert into a hot tub.
Whether you are interested in dipping your toes in or sunbathing poolside from the convertible deck, the options are limitless. Don’t let small space prevent you from soaking in the warm summer sunshine. Learn more about tiny pools and how you can experience the best of summer from your very own backyard. Who needs a vacation when you can have a staycation from the comfort of your backyard paradise?
What’s the Big Deal with Tiny Pools?
Small pools have historically been a luxury for high society and as such offer a divine aesthetic. Dating back as far as the Roman baths, in which the wealthy tended to have a private chamber for cleansing and refreshing, through the Renaissance, personal pools were often situated alongside one another for socialites to gather, and the private pool has been a coveted extravagance for centuries. For several reasons, these tiny pools remain popular today.
Tiny pools have a wide selection of color tiles that shimmer and shine in reflective beauty. A small pool offers homeowners the opportunity to splurge on the materials a bit more than they might for a standard-size one. The pool’s smaller size allows it to be part of the backyard aesthetic without overtaking the space.
Eco-friendly and Energy Efficient
The design of a tiny pool offers maximum efficiency by using less energy to circulate the water and control its temperature. Because of their small capacity, tiny pools use fewer chemicals and require less water to fill.
Easy to Manage
Their small size is optimal for safely managing the chemicals and regular cleanings without additional strain or stress. Less time spent on pool maintenance means more time for relaxing in the cool water on a floatie with a beverage in hand.
Tiny pools offer the perfect haven for singles and small families. Standard-size and larger pools require extra upkeep and occupy a large parcel of backyard space. Tiny pools, on the other hand, are ideal for an afternoon float while saving some of the yard space for a sunny deck or blooming garden for gorgeous tropical plants.
Amenable to All Seasons
Some homeowners may choose to heat their tiny pool and keep it running every season. Because it takes significantly less energy to heat the water, it’s not uncommon for tiny pools to be built for year-round use. Some may even be converted into a hot tub for chilly winter evenings.
Adaptable and Accessible
Tiny pools are perfect for homeowners with disabilities because they may be easily adapted to physical needs. When homebuyers work with a tiny pool company, they can design one to include simple accessibility modifications, such as ADA transfer walls, wheelchair ramps, and incorporate chair lifts for safer access.
The typical in-ground swimming pool has a 75-foot perimeter, meaning the complete distance around the edge of the pool is 75 feet. This may be a rectangular pool between 24-28 feet long and 14-18 feet wide, or a freeform shape.
On the other hand, a pool that is 10 feet by 10 feet or less is generally considered a tiny pool. Some tiny pools may be narrower and longer, such as 8.5 feet by 12 feet. Typically, three feet is adequate depth for taking an occasional dip or a relaxing float, while four to five feet is an ideal depth for a lap or exercise pool.
Plunge Pool vs. Above-Ground Pool
When deciding between a plunge pool and an above-ground pool, homeowners should consider the pros and cons of both options. A plunge pool is essentially a compact version of a traditional swimming pool placed on the ground and level with the terrain. An above-ground pool sets on top of the ground, making it an easier installation. While a plunge pool offers a more sleek, modern minimalist look, the exterior sides of an above-ground pool can be designed to fit any chic outdoor aesthetic.
Installation and Set Up
Most tiny pools are built off-site and lowered into the ground by a crane, rather than a concrete and plaster pour as in a traditional in-ground standard-size swimming pool. Even though their small size allows for a prefabricated structure to be transported as a single unit and set in place, it does not make the design and build process of a tiny pool easy or simple. Every detail is measured with precision to ensure safety and a robust, sustainable design that will last a long time without needing additional repairs.
Some above-ground tiny pools may be built from repurposed materials, such as a stock tank or stone basin. Especially for DIY enthusiasts, the opportunities are endless to reduce, reuse, and recycle for ultimate relaxation and restoration.
Specialty Tiny Pools
There are a few types of tiny pools that serve an intended purpose that is worth mentioning for homeowners with specific interests.
For exercise enthusiasts, homeowners seeking water therapy to regain strength, and individuals training for a specific purpose might look into an endless pool. These contraptions allow users to maximize training time and gain exercise even in a small space.
Especially in small backyards, privacy from neighbors can be difficult to come by. Homeowners might build a privacy screen around their pool to allow a more intimate setting or block out extra sounds and stimulation. Tall palm plants clustered together may achieve a natural oasis feel, or stained wooden picket fencing may create a rustic vibe.
Sliding Deck Pool Cover
For safety precautions, a sliding pool cover is ideal on tiny pools. When the pool is in use, simply slide the deck out and enjoy a poolside deck for lounging and snacking while out of the water. After pool time, slide the cover on top of the pool to prevent any accidental falls or slips into the water.
Shapes and Designs
Tiny pools come in many shapes, sizes, and designs. Here are just a few of the top tiny pool concepts to get your creative juices flowing.
Always a classic, the rectangular pool offers a stunning and simple style that reflects grandeur and luxury. Plunge pools that are rectangular in shape may be level with the ground, thus embodying a mid-century modern look that sheds light on a timeless concept.
Tiny Circular Pool
Contrary to the rectangular tiny pool, a circular shape offers a more earthy, Bohemian vibe with natural tones of relaxed comfort and restorative afternoons on the water. Whether above-ground or in-ground, the circular pool is perfect for a calming meditation or peaceful float.
In tiny homes and yards, the space is often maximized by vertically stacking. Homeowners might consider a tiny pool design that incorporates an in-ground or plunge pool level with a tiered concept and an above-ground level set just slightly behind the ground level. This concept doubles your pool size without taking up a ton of extra yard space.
Stock Tank Pool
A big part of the tiny home movement is maximizing the opportunity to repurpose items and find new ways to upcycle on a budget. A stock tank pool can be a neat way to give your tiny lifestyle a chic rustic or modern farmhouse aesthetic.
Especially in the case of tiny pools, the key is to find ways to make the small space feel much larger than it is. Using the terrain to sculpt your backyard and position an infinity pool ever so slightly to create an illusion of a waterfall is a clever way to make your tiny pool feel absolutely limitless.
As with any major addition or renovation to a home or yard, city and/or county permits may be required. Be sure to check with your local building department to learn if you are required to receive a permit before beginning any construction or installation. Failure to obtain the proper permits may result in hefty fines and delays in setting up your new swimming pool. Additionally, if your neighborhood has an HOA, be sure to do your research to determine if there are any regulations for pools before beginning pre-planning.
Tiny Home Companies
There are hundreds of tiny pool companies across the U.S. that specialize in the design and installation of pools for a tiny-living lifestyle. Here are just a few to check out for inspiration.
Texas Tiny Pools
Located in Austin, Texas, this women-owned business is passionate about providing homes with great service and working with homeowners to find the perfect fit for challenging yard spaces. Texas Tiny Pools even incorporates remote access to control your pool’s features from a smartphone. Their sliding deck pool cover is a neat addition that ensures safety for your children and pets, as well as protection for your pool.
Proper Plunge Pools
Another great option for homeowners in the Austin area is Proper Plunge Pools. Their prefab tiny pool designs are made for completing your urban oasis. Multiple tile options and different sizes offer several customizations to meet your unique style.
A leading brand in custom pool designs, Diamond Spas specializes in unique concepts for both plunge and above-ground pools. Located in Colorado, their team is quick to find the hottest trends in custom pool designs and bring them to their highest possible quality. Check out their glass-walled above-ground pools and spa collection for a neat source of inspiration!
This New Hampshire small pool builder offers a variety of precast plunge pools and hot tubs. Soake Pools offers the best of energy-efficient, heated tiny swimming pools to enjoy year-round.
Leisure Pools is a nationwide company committed to providing high-quality swimming pools of all shapes and sizes. Located in branches across the U.S., Leisure Pools delivers in many areas of the country.
Take the Plunge
From coast to coast, the tiny pools trend is making a big splash. Contact a tiny pool designer today and begin your journey to building the ultimate backyard tiny paradise.
Melanie Theriault is a writer, counselor, and lifelong learner. She holds a B.A. in Sociology from Southwestern University, where she discovered her passion for fostering human connection through storytelling.