small pool ideas on a budget

Top 10 Small Pool Ideas on a Budget for Your Backyard Oasis

Creating a backyard oasis with a pool doesn’t have to break the bank. Whether you have a small space or a tight budget, there are plenty of innovative and affordable options to consider. These inexpensive small pool ideas on a budget can transform your backyard into a peaceful retreat.

1. Inflatable Pools

One of the easiest and most budget-friendly options is an inflatable pool. These are fast to set up and available in a variety of sizes. Inflatable pools are perfect for small backyards and can be stored away during off-seasons. They are also an excellent option for families with young children. For added comfort, consider inflatable pools with built-in seats or canopy covers to provide shade.

2. Stock Tank Pools

Stock tank pools are gaining popularity due to their rustic charm and affordability. Originally designed as water troughs for livestock, these galvanized metal tanks can be repurposed into stylish and functional pools. They are available in various sizes and can be enhanced with a simple filtration system. Add a deck or some seating around the pool to complete the look.

3. Shipping Container Pools

If you’re looking for something more unique, consider converting a shipping container into a pool. This alternative is not only cost-effective but also environmentally sustainable because it recycles used containers. Shipping container pools can be customized to fit your backyard and often come with built-in steps and seating areas. They are durable, easy to maintain, and offer a modern aesthetic.

4. Above Ground Pools

Above ground pools are a classic choice for backyard pool ideas on a budget. They are less expensive than in-ground pools and come in various sizes and shapes. You can enhance the appearance of an above ground pool by adding a wooden or composite deck around it. This creates a seamless transition from the pool to your backyard, providing a more integrated and stylish look.

5. Plunge Pools

Plunge pools are small, deep pools designed for relaxation and cooling off rather than swimming. They are perfect for small spaces and can be installed either above ground or in-ground. Heating systems and jets are optional add-ons for plunge pools that increase comfort. Surround your plunge pool with plants and comfortable seating to create a serene retreat.

Plunge Pools

6. Fiberglass Pools

Fiberglass pools are a great option for those looking for small pool ideas on a budget. These pre-fabricated pools are quick to install and come in various shapes and sizes. Fiberglass pools are low maintenance and have a smooth surface, which helps prevent algae growth. To save on costs, consider a smaller size or a basic model and add decorative elements like tiles or lighting.

7. Natural Swimming Ponds

For an eco-friendly and budget-conscious option, consider a natural swimming pond. These pools use plants and natural filtration systems to keep the water clean, eliminating the need for chemicals. Natural swimming ponds create a serene and beautiful setting by blending in perfectly with the surroundings. They can be built to fit any size or shape, making them perfect for small backyards.

8. DIY Concrete Pools

If you’re handy and enjoy DIY projects, a concrete pool might be the perfect option. Building a concrete pool yourself can save a significant amount of money. Start with a small, simple design and gradually add features like steps, benches, or decorative tiles. Concrete pools are durable and can be customized to fit your backyard perfectly. Ensure you have the proper permits and follow local regulations when undertaking this project.

9. Portable Hot Tubs

For those who prefer warm water relaxation, portable hot tubs are an excellent choice. They are relatively affordable and can be set up quickly. Portable hot tubs come in various sizes and styles, some even offering jets and LED lighting. They are perfect for small spaces and can be moved or stored when not in use. Potted plants, outdoor rugs, and soft seating may create a warm and inviting environment around your hot tub.

Portable Hot Tubs

10. Repurposed Materials

Get creative with repurposed materials to create a unique and budget-friendly pool. Old bathtubs, large plastic containers, or even reclaimed wood can be used to build a small pool. This option requires some DIY skills and imagination but can result in a one-of-a-kind pool that fits perfectly in your backyard. Using repurposed materials not only saves money but also adds a personal touch to your outdoor space.

Tips for Enhancing Your Budget Pool

No matter which small pool idea on a budget you choose, there are several ways to enhance the overall look and feel of your backyard oasis:

  1. Landscaping: Surround your pool with plants, flowers, and shrubs to create a lush and inviting environment. To provide visual appeal, try including a combination of low and tall plants.
  2. Lighting: Adding outdoor lighting to your pool area can significantly enhance its atmosphere. String lights, solar-powered garden lights, and underwater LED lights are all great options.
  3. Seating: Comfortable seating is essential for any pool area. Invest in weather-resistant furniture, such as lounge chairs, hammocks, or outdoor sofas, to create a relaxing space.
  4. Shade: Provide shade with umbrellas, pergolas, or shade sails. This not only makes the area more comfortable during hot days but also adds an element of style.
  5. Decor: Personalize your pool area with decorative elements like outdoor rugs, throw pillows, and art. Choose colors and patterns that complement your overall backyard theme.
  6. Safety: Ensure your pool area is safe, especially if you have children or pets. Install a fence or barrier around the pool and consider a pool cover when not in use.


Creating a beautiful backyard oasis with a small pool doesn’t have to be expensive. With these top 10 small pool ideas on a budget, you can enjoy a refreshing and relaxing pool without breaking the bank. From inflatable pools to DIY concrete pools, there are plenty of options to suit any budget and backyard size. Enhance your pool area with thoughtful landscaping, lighting, and seating to create a space where you can unwind and enjoy the warm weather. Start planning your budget-friendly pool today and transform your backyard into the perfect summer retreat.

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