When it comes to building the perfect swimming pool, there are many factors to consider. From designing a custom oasis for relaxation and family enjoyment to selecting high-quality materials and equipment, the process can seem overwhelming. This is where the expertise of a pool designer or contractor comes into play. But which one is better suited for the job?

In this blog, we will dive into the differences between these two professions and unveil why hiring a skilled pool designer may prove superior in achieving your dream backyard paradise. So grab your floaties and let’s jump in!

Pool Contractor vs. Pool Designer: Understanding the Difference

When starting a pool construction project, one of the first decisions homeowners must make is whether to hire a pool contractor or a pool designer. While both professionals play vital roles in bringing a swimming pool to life, there are notable differences between the two.

Their rules

Pool contractor

A pool contractor is an individual or company that specializes in the construction of swimming pools. Their primary role is to oversee the physical construction of the pool, including excavation, plumbing, electrical work, and the installation of pool equipment and features. Pool contractors have an in-depth understanding of building codes, safety regulations, and construction materials, ensuring that the project meets all the necessary standards.

Pool designer

A pool designer is a professional who specializes in the planning and designing of swimming pools. Their role is to create aesthetically pleasing and functional pool designs that meet the needs and requirements of their clients. Pool designers have a keen eye for aesthetics, considering the architectural style of the home, the landscaping, and the desired ambiance.

Key responsibilities of a pool contractor

👉 Site preparation: Clearing and grading the land to accommodate pool construction, including any necessary excavation or levelling work.

👉 Structural installation: Building the pool structure, including the pool walls, coping, and decking.

👉 Plumbing and electrical work: Installing the pool’s plumbing system, including pipes for filtration, circulation, and water features, as well as electrical wiring for pool lights, pumps, and heaters.

👉 Equipment installation: Positioning and connecting pool pumps, filters, heaters, and other necessary pool equipment.

👉 Finishing touches: Applying the pool’s interior and exterior finishes, such as plaster or tile, and installing the coping and coping stones.

👉 Testing and commissioning: Ensuring that the pool’s systems are working as intended, conducting water tests, and conducting system checks before handover to the client.

Key responsibilities of a pool designer

👉 Site analysis: Evaluating the site’s physical characteristics, such as slope, drainage, and sun exposure, to determine the feasibility of a pool installation.

👉 Concept development: Collaborating with clients to understand their vision and create a design concept that meets their needs and preferences.

👉 Pool layout: Designing the pool’s shape, size, and layout, considering factors such as depth and accessibility.

👉 Technical drawings: Creating detailed drawings, plans, and blueprints that accurately represent the pool design, including dimensions, materials, and any additional features.

👉  Feature selection: Recommending and selecting pool features such as waterfalls, fountains, grotto, or water features to enhance the pool’s visual appeal and functionality.

👉  Materials selection: Assisting clients in selecting the appropriate pool construction materials, such as concrete, fiberglass, or vinyl, and coordinating with pool contractors to ensure proper installation.

👉 Selecting contractors to build the pool: Researching and selecting companies to carry out the various works.

👉 Project management: Coordinating with pool contractors, engineers, and other professionals to ensure that every aspect of the pool design and construction process is on track.

In summary, while both a pool contractor and a pool designer play crucial roles in the swimming pool construction process, they have distinct roles and responsibilities. Pool contractors focus on the physical construction of the pool, while pool designers specialize in the design aspect. 

Morana's advice 👇

Consider the landscaping around the pool

The pool decking is an extension of the pool area and should be carefully chosen to enhance its visual appeal. Do not neglect plants, trees, and shrubs which provide shade and privacy.

Make your pool project easy with a pro

Whether you hire a designer or a contractor doesn’t matter. However, hiring a professional is key to success.


Get a professional to turn your vision into reality!

Pros and Cons of Hiring a Pool Contractor

The benefits

Hiring a pool contractor provides access to a team of skilled professionals who possess extensive knowledge and hands-on experience in building and maintaining swimming pools.

Hiring a pool contractor can speed up the pool installation process. They have the necessary tools and equipment, allowing them to complete the project efficiently.

Pool contractors have a keen eye for quality and will ensure that every aspect of the pool meets industry standards. They have the experience to identify potential issues and address them promptly, resulting in long-lasting and durable pool construction.

Hiring a professional pool contractor can provide peace of mind. They handle all the logistics, including permits, materials, and equipment, ensuring that the project is completed smoothly.

The drawbacks

Hiring a pool contractor can be a substantial investment. The cost of their services includes labor, materials, and equipment, which can add up quickly.

While pool contractors have the knowledge and expertise to build pools, they may not offer the same level of creativity in terms of design options. If you prefer a unique and customized design, hiring a pool designer in addition to a pool contractor might be necessary.

Communication is crucial in any construction project, and pool installations are no exception. Hiring a pool contractor requires open and transparent communication to ensure that everyone is on the same page. If there are any misunderstandings or delays, it can impact the project’s timeline and budget.

It is like entrusting one person with the keys to the success of your pool construction project if you hire a pool contractor. You should choose a contractor who is reputable, reliable and stands behind his or her work. Ask for references and read reviews. Make sure to get a detailed contract that outlines the scope of the work, the timeline, and the estimated cost. Finally, get everything in writing.

Advantages and disadvantages of Hiring a Pool Designer


Having a pool installed in your backyard can be an exciting and rewarding experience. However, the decision to hire a pool designer or not is an important one. While hiring a professional designer can offer various advantages, it is essential to consider both the pros and cons of this decision before making a decision. Here are some key points to consider:

The pros

The cons

The benefits of hiring both

Hiring both a pool designer and a pool contractor offers numerous advantages. The pool designer’s expertise in creative design ensures that your pool turns into a stunning oasis that matches your vision. On the other hand, the pool contractor’s technical know-how guarantees that the construction process is smooth, efficient, and compliant with safety standards. By having both experts on board, you can have peace of mind knowing that your pool will be both aesthetically pleasing and functionally superior.


In the realm of pool design and construction, the pool designer and the pool contractor are two indispensable professionals that work hand in hand to bring your pool dreams to life. Their collaboration and expertise ensure that your vision is translated into reality, resulting in a breathtaking pool that you can enjoy for years to come. So, when embarking on your pool project, remember the importance of both the pool designer and pool contractor in creating your personal oasis.