How Close To The Boundary Line Can I Build a Pool?

When installing your swimming pool, you need to be sure you are following protocols and any necessary by-laws of your region to ensure your pool will be up to code. One of the main concerns, of course, is your pool’s placement. This is especially crucial for homes that may have limited room in their backyard and are trying to maximise the space for the swimming pool. You’ll want to be mindful, for example, that you are building within your property’s boundary line. It’s an important detail to finalise before installing any swimming pool.

What is a boundary line and how do I find it?

A boundary line, simply put, is the invisible line that divides plots of land. Boundary lines are determined by land surveyors who lay out the lines on a map and may set markers on the boundaries.

There are two ways to find your boundary line(s):

  1. Serve a boundary notice. A boundary notice is a written notice sent to your neighbour to alert them to the fact you are confirming boundaries. 
  2. Hire a registered surveyor. If your neighbour doesn’t hire a surveyor or peg their boundary within 21 days, you can hire a registered surveyor to define your property’s boundary lines.

Once you have had a surveyor lay out the boundary lines of your property, you must make sure your swimming pool falls within the confines of the space.

Building your pool to maximise space

Once you’re ready to design your backyard, you’ll want to make sure you are maximising your space and using design elements and the existing landscape to take full advantage of the amount of room you have. You’ll want to take these things into consideration:

  • You should build your pool in such a way that it won’t section off a large area of your backyard.
  • On small blocks, you should build against the property boundary in order to take advantage of the existing boundary fence (and using it as part of the pool fence detail)
  • You don’t need full perimeter access to the pool, so keep in mind that single or double-sided access will be okay.
  • You should build your pool in an area where it will be the most visible from the living areas of your house. This allows for it to be viewed as a showpiece, even from inside the home.

Keeping safety top of mind

In New Zealand, by law, all pools (including small heated pools) must have a barrier to prevent unsupervised access of the immediate pool area by children younger than five years old. A pool barrier needs to restrict access to the pool from the house, other buildings, vehicle or pedestrian access areas, or other areas of the property. Auckland Council states*: 

Pool barriers must:

  • Restrict access to the pool/immediate pool area
  • Be at least 1.2 metres in height
  • Have no climbable features on the outside of the barrier (like trees)
  • Not have any gaps that exceed 100 millimetres in or under it

Trellis or mesh barriers must not be higher than 1.8 metres and must have openings 50 millimetres or less or be fitted with a protective cover.

Pool gates must:

  • Open away from the pool area
  • Comply with the rules of the fences
  • Have a gate latch that:
    • Self-closes and self-latches unaided
    • Is a minimum of 1.5 metres above the ground
    • Inaccessible from the outside except by reaching at least 1.2 metres if mounted on the inside of the gate

Other considerations for pool placement

Boundary lines and fencing are important elements to consider when deciding where to place your pool, but there are others too. These include:

Reducing disruption to your neighbours

If you’re putting your pool near the boundary line, you’ll want to minimise disruption to your neighbours. A good rule to follow is to place the pool at least 1,000 millimetres from the boundary line, and the landscape between the boundary line and the pool to enhance the overall appearance of the space.

Integrating your pool with the rest of your home

Ultimately, you’ll be spending more time enjoying the view of your pool than swimming in it. Whether you have a big or small backyard, your pool will be the main focal point. Be sure to integrate the interior and exterior spaces through hard landscaping (patios, pathways, entertaining areas, etc.) and soft landscaping (grass and gardens) to enhance the pool and the overall value of your property.

Optimal positioning

The sun can warm your pool up by 4° celsius, so make sure to choose a north-facing location that gets plenty of sun. If, however, your positioning for sun exposes the pool to prevailing winds, which will increase evaporation as well as cooling, consider adding a windbreak into your design scheme.


If possible, avoid placing your pool near or over obstacles such as storm-water drains, gas, electricity, etc. Should any of these services need repairs, having a pool over top will make them hard to get to and increase costs. Consider the placement of pools near trees as well. While branches may provide welcome shade, leaves and debris will fall into the water more often, requiring more cleaning. Tree roots can also cause problems down the line as well if they place pressure on the pool walls or plumbing systems.

Narellan Pools are here to help

If you’re considering installing a fibreglass swimming pool, we’re here to answer your questions. From choosing the right pool for your backyard to managing the permits and local requirements, we’re here to help. We pride ourselves on offering a transparent process from beginning to end so you’ll always know what to expect.

The team at Narellan Pools is available to give you more information on the requirements when it comes to installing a new fibreglass swimming pool. Contact us for more information

*Auckland Council Swimming Pool Restrictions

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