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A pool loan is a type of specialty loan product used to finance the installation or renovation of an in-ground swimming pool. These loans are part of the home renovation loan category. A pool loan can be offered by a bank, credit union, private lender, or an online lender. This type of financing comes in the form of a home equity line of credit (HELOC), a home equity loan, a cash-out refinance, or an unsecured personal loan.
A swimming pool can increase your home value by about 7% but it does require maintenance and can increase your monthly utility costs. You will need to decide what type of pool you want, the size, and whether it’s going to be heated or not and consider pool landscaping. Keep reading to learn more about the best pool loans.
Best Overall: Truist
Why We Chose It: Truist is our best overall pool loan because it offers loans up to $500,000, which is plenty for an extravagant pool. It also doesn't charge closing costs and the company is made up of two large banks with lots of financial expertise.
Large maximum loan amounts
Discounts for banking customers
No loan prequalification tool
Only designed for borrowers with good credit
Truist is the product of a 2019 merger between SunTrust Bank and BB&T. The online lender LightStream is also part of the newly formed bank. This gives the company a great deal of banking and lending experience as well as industry respect. Truist offers checking and savings accounts, investing options, home mortgages, and credit cards. Its headquarters are in Charlotte, North Carolina.
Truist offers a pool loan in the form of a HELOC with a 20-year repayment term and a 10-year draw period, the length of time you're allowed to pull funds from the loan. Amounts range from $10,000 to $500,000, and no closing costs are charged as long as you have the loan open for at least three years.
These loans are for borrowers with good credit and current bank customers receive discounted rates, which are variable and start at 4.64 percent. Loans are secured with either your primary residence or second home. You can apply online, at a location, or over the phone. The loan amount depends on the amount of equity in your home.
Best for Good Credit: SoFi
Why We Chose It: You can borrow up to $100,000 with no collateral and no late fees. SoFi will pause your payments if you lose your job.
Unsecured loans with no collateral required
Relatively large loan amounts
Only for borrowers with good credit
No next-day funding
Founded in 2011 by two Stanford business school students, SoFi is located in San Francisco, California. As of November 2020, the company has funded over $50 billion in loans, $22 billion of which has already been paid back by its customers—who it refers to as members.
You can finance your dream swimming pool with one of SoFi’s personal loans that don’t require any equity in your home or collateral. Loan amounts range from $5,000 to $100,000 and there are no associated loan fees. A FICO score of 680 or higher is usually required, and loans generally fund in about one week. There are variable and fixed rates ranging from 5.99 percent to 18.28 percent.
SoFi is an online lender, so the entire loan process is completed online and avoids the dreaded paperwork overload. The funds are wired to your account. The company also offers different kinds of personal loans for consolidating credit cards, paying medical debt, and funding small businesses.
Best for Long Repayment Terms: Discover
Why We Chose It: Discover offers long repayment terms for its pool loans, lends to borrowers with less-than-perfect credit, and doesn’t charge any closing costs or loan origination fees.
Long loan repayment terms
Different credit tiers approved
High minimum loan amount
Must use your home as collateral
Discover is mostly known as a credit card company, but it's actually a digital bank and payment partner. It was founded in 1985 in Chicago and introduced by Sears. Now, Discover offers innovative products and services including contactless-enabled credit cards in addition to student loans, home loans, and personal loans.
No minimum credit score is required, but Discover typically lends to borrowers with mid-level scores. Its pool loan is a home equity loan with a minimum amount of $35,000 and a maximum of $200,000. It’s a great choice if you want to put in a large pool or a pool with landscaping and other features. Interest rates range from 3.99 percent to 11.99 percent. The bank does not charge fees or require any cash at closing.
You can apply for your pool loan online or over the phone. Expect the approval process to take a few weeks. Home equity loans typically take longer to fund than personal loans because a home is used as collateral and more documents are required.
Best for Low Interest Rate: Alliant
Why We Chose It: Alliant offers competitive interest rates on swimming pool loans in the form of cash-out refinances. It gives you the money in a lump sum rather than as a draw.
Low interest rates
Potential for large loan amounts
Convenience of an online application
Lengthy funding process
Must join Alliant Credit Union to qualify
Alliant is a credit union that was founded in 1935 with headquarters in Chicago. It is member-owned and the eighth largest credit union in the United States with over $12 billion in assets and over 500,000 members. In addition to pool loans, it offers full banking services, credit cards, consumer loans, RV loans, and online banking services.
Because the type of pool loan Alliant offers is a cash-out refinance, you will have to go through the entire process of obtaining a mortgage, going to settlement, and paying closing costs. This may take up to 45 days. Rates start at 2.125 percent, the lowest of all pool loans we reviewed. The loan amount will be determined by how much equity is taken out of your home.
The funds will be provided in a lump sum at settlement and can then be used to build your new pool. Applications can be submitted online, but you must first join the credit union.
Best for Poor Credit: Upgrade
Why We Chose It: Upgrade is a good option if you want to build a pool but don’t have the good credit that most lenders require. It offers fixed rates and personal loans with no collateral needed.
Loan amounts large enough for a pool
Fixed interest rates
No collateral or home equity needed
Higher interest rates
Upgrade is the newest company on our list of best pool loans. It was founded in 2017 with the intention of creating an online credit card and loan platform. Its goal is to provide affordable and responsible credit to more people. Over 10 million customers have applied for a credit card or loan with the company and it has over $3 billion in available credit. Upgrade has three offices in the U.S, including its headquarters in San Francisco.
Upgrade offers personal, unsecured loans from $1,000 to $50,000. You can use the loan to upgrade an existing pool or build a new pool. You can check your interest rate online without affecting your credit score. Rates are fixed and typically range from 7.99 percent to 35.97 percent. There are no prepayment penalties, but the bank charges origination fees as high as 8 percent. There isn’t a published minimum FICO score, but lower scores will generally pay more in interest and fees.
Once approved, you can expect the funds in your bank account within a day. Upgrade also offers debt consolidation loans, home improvement loans, and loans to refinance credit cards.
Best Specialty Loan: HFS Financial
Why We Chose It: HFS Financial has a team of financing experts familiar with building swimming pools, which is helpful for estimating costs.
Fast funding times
High maximum loan amount
Doesn’t offer banking services
HFS Financial was founded as a financial company that specifically offers home improvement loans, including pool and renovation loans, as well as hot tub financing, garage loans, sunroom financing, and roofing loans. Its focus is on getting customers the home improvements they want with low rates and quick funding times. The company is located in Maryland but offers pool loans in all 50 states.
There’s no reported minimum loan amount and the maximum is $250,000. Rates start at 2.99 percent and loan terms go up to 20 years. There’s no minimum credit score, but the company does review your FICO score and overall credit history.
You can apply for a loan online, which takes just 60 seconds, or call an agent. Expect to hear back within 24 hours with a decision. Most loans fund within 48 hours.
Pool loans come in different sizes and types of loans with varying terms, costs, and rates. We reviewed companies that offered personal loans, home equity loans, HELOCs, and cash-out-refinances. We chose Truist as our recommendation for the best pool loans. Overall, the company offers competitive rates, a multitude of banking services, and high maximum loan amounts.
What Is a Pool Loan?
A pool loan is any type of loan that is used to finance the construction or remodeling of a pool, usually an in-ground pool. Pool loans are offered by banks, credit unions, online lenders, and private lenders. The size of the pool loan will depend on your pool budget, the type of loan, and your qualifications as a borrower.
You can get a personal loan to finance your pool with no collateral or choose to do a cash-out refinance and use the proceeds to build your dream pool. Other options include using a HELOC or a home equity loan to finance the purchase.
Who Should Use a Pool Loan?
You should use a pool loan if you want to remodel or update an existing pool, build your dream pool, have equity in your home, or want to obtain a personal loan with no collateral. You should not seek to obtain a pool loan if you don’t own the property where the pool will be built or upgraded.
How Much Does a Pool Loan Cost?
As is the case with all loans, the costs of pool loans vary greatly. This depends on the type of loan, the loan size, terms, lender, and how strong the borrower’s credit is. Some lenders charge origination fees, prepayment penalty fees, and late fees, so look out for those before you calculate the cost of your pool.
Also, keep in mind that the interest you pay will usually be your highest cost. The lower the interest rate, the lower your costs.
How We Chose the Best Pool Loans
We researched more than a dozen pool loans that are on the market today. We considered personal loans, HELOCs, home equity loans, and cash-out refinances. We reviewed the loans based on their qualifications, terms, rates, fees, and how quickly the loans were funded. We also considered the application process, minimum and maximum loan terms, reputation, and unique loan products.