Swimming pools are popular in Georgia because of the long, hot summers. Above-ground pools are especially popular because they are far less expensive to build and maintain than in-ground pools. They are also less susceptible to invasion by snakes and other wildlife, of which there is no shortage in Georgia. To enjoy an above-ground pool fully, owners must adhere to all state and local ordinances and laws regarding swimming pools.
At one time, Georgia law required fencing around pools. As of 2009, local governments make this determination. In most localities, all pools, whether above-ground or in-ground, must be within a lockable fence that is at least four feet high.Split-rail fences do not qualify. If a qualifying fence surrounds the property, no additional fence is needed around the pool. If, however, the fence is not lockable, contains gaps, is broken or does not meet height requirements, a separate fence must be placed to prohibit entry into the pool by unattended children or unauthorized persons. Some localities waive the fencing requirement for above-ground pools if no means of entry to the pool (such as a ladder) is readily available.
Georgia pool owners must keep all electrical equipment in good repair. Owners may not modify heaters or pumps to increase power because of the risk of overload and fire. Some localities prohibit the use of heaters in above-ground pools. While no law requires the use of ladders in above-ground pools, some localities consider allowing minor children to swim in pools without a fixed ladder to be child endangerment.
Locations and Permitting
The county or city of which the owner is a resident governs location restrictions and permitting requirements. Most localities require permits for above-ground pools and additionally require that a city or county inspector visit once during construction and again upon completion. Most localities also stipulate that owners place swimming pools and their attendant equipment at least 10 feet from any property line. Urban and suburban localities typically prohibit swimming pools in the front yard. Visible swimming pools are usually also forbidden in suburban side yards, except on corner lots. Above-ground pools may not be installed over septic tanks or buried utility cables.