We get this question all the time. Here's the bottom line...
Having a swimming pool built is not cheap. If you spend $20,000 on a pool, it will not add $20,000 to the value of your home. Sadly, it may add nothing to the value of your home. Don't add a pool to your home if you expect to recoup the cost upon sale. It just doesn't work that way. Add a pool to your home because you want a pool. A pool is an outstanding investment in terms of recreation, fun, enjoyment, enhancing the appearance of your back yard and it provides great exercise. (In Phoenix, having a pool may mean being able to survive the summers comfortably!) There are dozens of great reasons to have a pool, but adding value to your home isn't one of them.
(I should note that what I say above pertains to the Phoenix area. The reason it's this way here is because so many homes have pools. In some parts of the country, a pool is rare and does add a premium to a home.)
What a pool can do is help you sell the home when the time comes. MANY people home shopping in Phoenix want a pool. We've had clients look at homes they loved but didn't buy because there wasn't a pool. Having an existing pool appeals to many home buyers. But note that there are some who don't want a pool and won't look at your house because it has one.
For more questions and answers like this, please visit The Real Estate FAQ