Oh, what a year 2020 has been. If it has taught us one thing, it is how to make the most from our homes and gardens.
Many of you will know, our garden has undergone something of a renovation this year, which you can track should you so wish in the article My Garden This Month March 2020. The plan was to install some artificial grass and make the space far more attractive, given that the lawn was a mass of weeds and moss!
Across the country, people have been turning to their outdoor spaces for inspiration, relaxation and even distraction. Even before the restrictions, entertaining at home had become big business, with the Independent explaining how people converted sheds and outbuildings into spaces to host guests or relax alone. Another great way to get more from your garden is by installing a hot tub. Sales of hot tubs were up 1,000% this year, as Britons spent more time at home and looked at ways in which they could accentuate that experience. A hot tub can cost as much, or as little as you want, but if you do consider getting one for your own garden, there are a few things to consider first, as we explore here.
The first, rather obvious consideration is cost. Some models can go for more than £10,000, whilst other budget hot tubs can come in under £300. You must plan based on your requirements. For instance, you may want one of the collapsible hot tubs currently on the market, to be put away in winter, or you may want to make the installation the focal point of your garden. Whatever your budget, remember you will need more than just the cost of the hot tub – delivery, installation and preparation all cost money too.
A hot tub is a rather intimate thing to have, you will be in your trunks or bikini and relaxing, so location is important. Consider what overlooks your hot tub and whether it will affect your enjoyment. Also, you will need an electricity supply out there for it to work, so if you do choose to locate it away from the house that could be a factor. The base is also a factor in where you place your tub. Just as with a new shed or summerhouse, the base you place your hot tub on must be flat and stable. A concrete or slab base is preferable, as the tub will weigh a huge amount when full of water and it must always be stable.
It is imperative to consider the view you will have; a hot tub may be wonderful, but if all you can see from it is a brick wall or the garage window, you may want to reconsider. Remember to factor in delivery, too. If you live in a row of tight terraces and you wish to have the hot tub in your back garden, you may need to consult the company supplying it on how it can be craned in. You may need to consult neighbours too if access to your property inconveniences them.
You do not need a water supply to fill a hot tub, but you must consider the drainage. The water does have to be changed and it is a huge volume to dispose of in one go, so you will need some connection to the mains drainage. This is an additional cost, and may even require more work and money than the tub itself. The drainage cover on HomeServe, shows what the typical coverage looks like for homeowners. However, if you’re installing a hot tub you will have to check with the provider if this will actually be included in the coverage.
At the end of the day, a faulty drain can cause significant problems both in your house, and garden, so the work needs to be done correctly and efficiently to prevent problems. Your hot tub will likely need to feed into the current system and if you are adding to the existing installation, it is wise to get additional cover to prevent any unforeseen outlays once your project is finished.
Finally, always try to think of safety too. If you have little ones, you may want to think about fencing off the area the hot tub is in or making it inaccessible to them. You will also be getting in and out so any surface around the outside should not be slippery, or pose a safety risk to you. Electrics and water do not mix either, so planning the electric supply, or taking existing external electrics into account is a must.