SAGINAW, MI – Move aside toilet paper and hand sanitizer, there’s a new item in hot demand during the COVID-19 pandemic: swimming pools.
Retailers in Michigan say they are seeing record sales this year of pools, pool toys and accessories and chemicals. The sunny, hot summer this year is only helping the trend.
With community pools across the state not opening this year and stay-cations becoming standard during the pandemic, a lot of families are taking the initiative to add a pool to their home.
Amy Worthington of Midland got ahead of the curve – she booked her in-ground pool installation with Beattie Master Pools and Spas of Saginaw last year. Beattie’s crews are currently hard at work on her property installing a new summertime oasis for her family.
She said having a pool during the pandemic is going to be a source of fun as they stay at home more, especially for her six-year old son, Liam. He was watching crews pour cement for the pool this week.
“He’s as excited as I am,” Worthington said. “Having kids, it gives them something to do.”
Paul Douglas is digital media director for Flint-based Blue Hawaiian Pools of Michigan.
“Because of the pandemic, we believe that more people are looking to add a pool to their home as they spend more time with family locally, opposed to vacationing,” Douglas said.
Blue Hawaiian Pools of Michigan is one of the many pool companies in the state seeing a dramatic increase in sales. Owner of Beattie Master Pools and Spas Kari Beattie-Randolph said that she has seen a “crazy busy” season this year.
“I think a lot of people are realizing not just this summer, but we hear a lot of people are saying this is kind of our new normal and money that they would have spent towards vacations or that they are now putting into their homes, into home entertainment,” she said.
Business started booming right out of the gate this season for pool stores.
“In general the trend was we hit the ground running and we hit it fast,” said Beattie-Randolph.
Memorial Day weekend is normally a busy weekend for the industry, but according to Beattie-Randolph, this year’s holiday weekend blew past years out of the water. She said that there was a rush to get above ground pools.
“Above ground pools were the new Charmin toilet paper, everyone had to have one,” she said.
Douglas of Blue Hawaiian Pool of Michigan noted that sales have also been on a steady incline since the start of the 2020 season, with an increase in demand for installations and fiberglass pools.
“More customers are asking for immediate pool installations which have balanced with customers who submit one, three and six-month, along with next year pool install requests,” said Douglas.
Another hot item that typically doesn’t fly off the shelves but is in short supply is an unusual one for the hot Michigan summer – the hot tub spa. Most spas are normally bought by customers who come in for an experience and special showing, including taking the…