Exterior

How Much Does an Inground Hot Tub Cost?

An inground hot tub provides a serene backyard oasis where residents and their guests can relax and rejuvenate. Inground hot tub cost ranges from $500 to $25,000, with many homeowners spending about $15,000.
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Inground Hot Tub Cost

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Highlights

  • The typical cost range to install an inground hot tub is $500 to $25,000, with a national average cost of $15,000.
  • There are numerous factors that can affect the cost of installing an inground hot tub, including the size and brand of the tub, site preparation, electrical work, plumbing and heating, and labor and permits.
  • An inground hot tub has many benefits, including easy access, an opportunity for relaxation and recreation, integration of a pool and spa area, improved backyard aesthetics, and multiple customization options.
  • Installing an inground hot tub is a job for a professional, as it involves plumbing and electrical work as well as potential excavation work.
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An inground hot tub has many benefits, such as better sleep and relaxation, increased circulation, reduced stress, decreased anxiety, and improved range of motion. For those who suffer from lower back pain, joint stress, arthritis, sore muscles, or fibromyalgia, an inground spa can help relieve pain and soreness. While installing a built-in hot tub is certainly a luxurious add-on to any home, many homeowners believe the installation cost is worth it for the health benefits and increased home value. How much does an inground hot tub cost? According to Angi, inground hot tub cost ranges from $500 to $25,000, with the national average at $15,000. Hot tub installation costs can skyrocket to $35,000 or more, depending on the size and type of hot tub, quality, brand, individual features, and difficulty of the installation. If an old hot tub needs to be removed before the installation process for a new hot tub can begin, the cost of hot tub removal will also be added to the project total.

This guide will examine the important factors that influence inground hot tub cost, additional costs and considerations that can change the final installation price, the benefits of installing a modern inground hot tub, and some helpful tips to save money on the installation process.

Factors in Calculating Inground Hot Tub Cost

Inground Hot Tub Cost
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While many homeowners can spend between $500 and $25,000 to install a backyard inground hot tub, the overall price can vary from the national average of $15,000 due to several important factors. These can include the hot tub size, brand, site preparation, electrical work, plumbing and heating, local labor pricing, and permit fees.

Size

The cost to install an inground jacuzzi depends on its size. Typically, the larger the hot tub, the more expensive the model and the installation costs. An outdoor inground hot tub that can fit between four and six people usually ranges from $3,500 to $15,000, not including installation costs. A small inground hot tub that can fit up to three people costs about $3,000, and large inground hot tubs that can fit up to 10 people can exceed $20,000. Hot tub manufacturers usually offer small, medium, and large options. Below are the average inground hot tub price ranges based on size.

Hot Tub SizeAverage Price RangeLengthWidthHeight
Small 2- to 4-person hot tub$2,000 to $8,0005 feet 4 inches to 7 feet5 feet 4 inches to 6 feet 8 inches29 inches to 35 inches
Medium 5- to 6-person hot tub$3,000 to $15,0006 feet 6 inches to 7 feet 9 inches6 feet 4 inches to 7 feet 9 inches33 inches to 38.5 inches
Large 7-person or more hot tub$4,000 to $20,0007 feet to 9 feet7 feet to 9 feet 2 inches36 inches to 38 inches

Brand

The best hot tub brands have name recognition, provide ample access to replacement parts, deliver excellent customer service, and supply warranties for the hot tub shell, leaks, and equipment and plumbing. Below are some popular hot tub brands and the average price ranges for their inground hot tub options. Homeowners will want to check with each manufacturer to make sure its tubs can be installed in the ground.

Hot Tub BrandAverage Price Range (Excluding Installation)
Bullfrog Spas$5,000 to $15,000
Cal Spas$3,000 to $15,000
Canadian Spas$3,000 to $30,000
Hot Springs Spas$3,000 to $15,000
Jacuzzi Hot Tubs$4,000 to $16,000
Marquis Spas$4,000 to $12,000
Master Spas$3,000 to $15,000
ThermoSpas$4,000 to $22,000

Site Preparation

Part of installing an inground hot tub is preparing the installation site. Homeowners will need to budget for site excavation, which typically costs between $400 and $2,500, depending on the size of the hot tub and the amount of work the area needs. It’s very important for the inground hot tub to be level so the weight of the tub and the water is equally distributed. Some of the other costs that involve site preparation include the cost to install a concrete slab, which can run from $4 to $8 per square foot, and the cost to install patio pavers, which ranges from $8 to $15 per square foot.

Electrical Work

Many inground hot tubs require 240-volt electrical service. If the existing electrical circuits cannot handle the increased electrical demand of the hot tub, a new subpanel can cost from $400 to $1,800. The cost of electrical wiring for an inground hot tub usually ranges from $600 to $2,200.

Plumbing and Heating

Installing new plumbing lines for an inground hot tub can cost from $350 to $2,000. While some prefabricated hot tubs come with plumbing, custom hot tubs require additional plumbing services.

The cost for heating the hot tub depends on the type of heater used: electric, propane, or natural gas. Many homeowners will see their utility bill increase about $25 to $40 per month, depending on how often the hot tub is used. A propane heater costs approximately $1,000, in addition to the cost of refilling the propane tanks when needed.

Labor

An inground hot tub costs more to install than an indoor or above-ground option, since doing so takes more time and effort. Site preparation and new electric and plumbing systems will also increase the price. Local labor prices vary in different parts of the country; densely populated urban areas with a higher cost of living will typically have more expensive labor costs than more rural areas.

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Permits

Building codes differ in various parts of the country, but many locations require a building permit to install an inground hot tub. It’s recommended that homeowners check their local regulations to be sure. A building permit for an inground hot tub usually costs between $100 and $250.

Additional Costs and Considerations

When budgeting for inground hot tub costs, many homeowners will find that there are additional price factors and considerations that can change the overall cost. These can include delivery fees, saltwater generator installation, running costs, maintenance, repairs, and additional features and customizations.

Delivery

Many hot tub installation professionals will include the cost of delivery with the purchase of the unit. If they don’t, it’s usually an additional cost of $200 to $500, and long-distance deliveries can be an extra $0.50 to $3 per mile. If the installation area is difficult to access, the hot tub may need to be delivered by crane, which can cost between $800 and $1,500 or more. It’s recommended that homeowners double-check regarding delivery fees to avoid unexpected charges.

Saltwater Generator Installation

For those who prefer a saltwater soak instead of chlorine in the water, a saltwater generator installation costs from $200 to $700 on average, with the generator itself costing as much as $1,500. This is considerably less expensive than a saltwater hot tub, which can cost between $6,500 and $18,000. Premium and luxury hot tubs can typically handle the addition of a saltwater system, but it’s important for the homeowner to check that the jets can accommodate the addition of salt to the system. Using saltwater eliminates the need for chemicals, reduces overall maintenance to the hot tub, and extends the time between water drainings by up to 1 year. Saltwater generator cells need to be replaced approximately every 3 to 6 years, and they cost between $100 and $500. Homeowners will want to be aware that some hot tub manufacturers may cancel their warranty if an aftermarket saltwater system is added to the hot tub.

Running Costs

Electricity costs to run a hot tub are about $25 to $40 per month, on average. The cost to fill an inground hot tub depends on the size of the tub, the frequency with which the hot tub needs to be filled, and local water pricing. A hot tub will need to be drained, cleaned, and refilled three to four times a year.

Maintenance and Repairs

High-end premium hot tubs can last up to 20 years with regular maintenance and care. Knowing how to clean a hot tub, making regular repairs, and testing chemical levels are all part of having a hot tub. Yearly maintenance can cost between $500 and $1,000, and repairs can run from $160 to $500 per individual repair.

Features and Customizations

The more features an inground hot tub has, the more expensive the overall cost. Including extra features will provide a personalized experience while homeowners and guests are using the inground hot tub and can increase the enjoyment factor. Below are some additional features and customizations that are available for an inground hot tub.

  • Audio system. Many hot tub audio systems are Bluetooth or voice controlled so that they can be safely used while homeowners and guests are soaking in the tub.
  • Bubbling fountain. Installing a fountain jet offers an interesting focal point and provides a calming auditory experience.
  • Chemical tester. A chemical tester is used to detect changes in the water chemistry before problems arise. Testing the water pH, chlorine level, and alkalinity is vital.
  • Cover. A hot tub cover keeps dirt and debris out of the water, as well as preventing animals or small children from falling into the tub. The cover also helps to regulate water temperature for increased energy efficiency.
  • Cover lifter. A hot tub cover lifter makes the cover easier to move and will extend the life of the cover.
  • Cover lock. A hot tub cover lock prevents intruders or children from opening the cover. It also helps keep the cover from flying off during a storm or a high wind event.
  • Drainage pump. Drainage pumps help empty the water from the hot tub in a short amount of time.
  • Drink holders. When users are soaking in a hot tub, it’s important to stay hydrated. Keeping drinks handy with cup holders that are fixed to the tub makes it much easier.
  • Headrests. Cushioned headrests make relaxing in a hot tub much more enjoyable. The foam material of a spa pillow supports the head and creates a luxurious experience.
  • LED lighting. Custom adjustable LED lighting can create a distinctive look when homeowners and guests are enjoying the hot tub at night.
  • Massaging jets. More-powerful hot tub massage jets can provide deeper relief to sore and aching muscles. There are optional hot tub jets that can be adjusted and rotated to accommodate individual needs.
  • Nonslip stairs. Nonslip stairs in a hot tub provide increased safety and can help prevent injuries.
  • Ozonator. A hot tub ozonator injects ozone into the water to destroy viruses and bacteria so that the water stays clean and sanitized.
  • Privacy screen. Depending on the location of the hot tub, extra privacy may be needed. A hot tub privacy screen provides privacy on two sides without making the hot tub feel completely enclosed.
  • Spillover waterfall. Many homeowners choose to install an inground hot tub with a waterfall when installing an inground pool. A spillover waterfall from the hot tub to the pool not only enhances the relaxing atmosphere, but it also provides an additional heat source to the pool when the hot tub is in use.
  • Thermometer. To ensure the hot tub water temperature is just right, a thermometer will provide an accurate readout.
  • Vacuum. A hot tub vacuum removes dirt, leaves, sand, and other debris from the hot tub and keeps the water clean.
  • Water heater. As water passes through the heater, the water is warmed to the correct temperature and circulated throughout the tub.
  • Water treatment system. A water treatment system helps keep the hot tub water clean and saves time with water filtration upkeep.
Inground Hot Tub Cost
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Types of Inground Hot Tubs

The best hot tubs typically come in two types: prefabricated and custom built. Prefab models are more budget-friendly, and custom-made hot tubs can be built in any shape and design. Below are the features of each type of inground hot tub.

Prefabricated

Prefabricated hot tubs usually have an acrylic shell, but they can also be made from stainless steel. They’re priced on the lower end of the price range for inground hot tubs, and they only come in standard shapes, such as oval, square, or kidney-shaped. The benefits of a prefabricated hot tub include a price point of about $2,000 to $3,000 less than a custom option and the fact that plumbing and delivery costs are typically included with the cost of the unit.

Custom Built

Custom-built inground hot tubs can be built to any size, design, and shape. Homeowners can choose exactly what they want regarding materials, number of seats, type of jets, and additional features. Custom inground hot tubs are usually larger than prefabricated options and have a higher price tag.

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Benefits of Choosing an Inground Hot Tub

Soaking in an inground hot tub can help relieve stress, massage sore and achy muscles, and provide a space to wind down at the end of a busy day. There are many benefits of choosing an inground hot tub, which include easier access than an elevated hot tub, relaxation and recreation, pool and spa integration, improved backyard aesthetics, and multiple customization options.

Easier Access

Those with mobility issues may find that an inground hot tub is easier to get in and out of than an above-ground option. Since inground tubs are usually larger than above-ground hot tubs, many people find that it’s easier to access an inground hot tub.

Relaxation and Recreation

Soaking in a spa can improve range of motion and decrease anxiety and stress. Not only is an inground hot tub a source of relaxation, but it can be used to entertain family and friends. Inground hot tubs provide an option to sit on the edge of the tub and just soak the feet, and others who choose not to get in the tub can sit around the edge to socialize.

Pool and Spa Integration

An inground hot tub can be integrated with the swimming pool to create a cohesive look. A spillover hot tub is a popular choice with many homeowners, since the warm water from the tub helps heat the pool water. Having an integrated pool and spa on the same filtration system can also help save money on cleaning and chemical costs. Some of the best home warranties for pool coverage may include spa coverage as well, but it’s always recommended that homeowners double-check the information to be sure.

Improved Backyard Aesthetics

Inground hot tubs can blend into the design of an inground pool and backyard scenery. Since there are many different hot tub designs and additional style options to choose from, they can be styled to match any backyard aesthetic.

Multiple Customization Options

There are a variety of features and customizations available when homeowners are designing an inground hot tub. Homeowners can choose what features work the best for them and design the hot tub according to their needs and overall style.

Inground Hot Tub Installation: DIY vs. Hiring a Professional 

Making a DIY project out of an inground hot tub installation is not recommended. The main reason is that building permits are typically needed for the project, and they can’t be obtained unless a professional contractor is installing the hot tub. Working with plumbing and electricity lines also requires experienced professionals to ensure the correct installation and to avoid potentially serious injuries. Homeowners hoping to use inground hot tub kits and DIY this project may want to look into above-ground hot tub kits; these are more accessible for DIY homeowners.

How to Save Money on Inground Hot Tub Cost

Installing an inground hot tub can turn an ordinary backyard into a relaxing oasis, but the costs can quickly add up. Below are some money-saving tips for homeowners who want to save as much money as possible on inground hot tub costs.

  • Get multiple estimates. Get at least three estimates from reputable hot tub installation companies to find a price that works with your budget.
  • Go small. Larger hot tubs cost more to buy and to install. If you just need a relaxing soaking spot for two or three people, opting for a smaller hot tub will save a considerable amount of money.
  • Look for discounts.  To make buying and installing a hot tub more budget-friendly, consider asking about senior, military, or teacher discounts; buying out of season; or waiting for a sale.
  • Negotiate. Hot tub dealers typically mark up their inventory by 40 percent to 50 percent. Negotiating for a lower price is expected.
  • Buy used. Buying a used hot tub from a reputable dealer typically comes with a warranty and a refurbished certificate.
  • Check for tax deductions. Those with documented medical issues who would benefit from using a hot tub may qualify for a tax deduction, which can reduce the cost of ownership by 25 percent to 40 percent.
  • Skip the extras. While a waterfall and customizable LED lights are desirable features, they can raise inground hot tub cost significantly.
Inground Hot Tub Cost
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Questions to Ask About Inground Hot Tub Installation

Before choosing a hot tub or hiring an installation company, there are some important questions that homeowners will want to ask about inground hot tub cost and the hot tub installation process. Below are some important questions to ask before starting the project.

  • How long have you been installing inground hot tubs?
  • Will you provide references?
  • Do you have a portfolio of past hot tub installation jobs?
  • Are you licensed and insured?
  • Do you provide free estimates?
  • How long will the hot tub installation take?
  • Who will install the hot tub?
  • What happens if the hot tub is damaged during the installation process?
  • Do you hire subcontractors during the installation?
  • What type of plumbing and electrical work is needed?
  • Will you get the building permits, or is that something I need to do?
  • Do you offer any guarantees or warranties on labor?
  • What is your payment plan?
  • Do you give discounts for paying in cash?
  • How can I leave a review of your work?

FAQs

Hot tubs can turn an ordinary backyard into a mini resort space and can provide a relaxing area to unwind and entertain. Before deciding on installing an inground hot tub, it’s important to have all the necessary information about owning a hot tub—from the purchase price to the best pool cleaning services, how to drain a hot tub, and how to get the most out of your backyard spa. Below are some frequently asked questions about inground hot tubs.

Q. How far should a hot tub be from the house?

It’s recommended that homeowners keep a hot tub at least 5 feet away from the house or any structure. This can prevent damage to the home if the hot tub leaks.

Q. Do hot tubs add value to a house?

A well-maintained and cared-for hot tub in an attractively landscaped area can be an appealing feature for some potential homebuyers, while others may not be interested in the cost or maintenance required in running a hot tub. Overall, it depends on the buyer and what they’re looking for in a home.

Q. How soon can you use a hot tub after installation?

You can typically use a hot tub between 24 and 48 hours after installation. Homeowners are advised to leave the freshly filled tub overnight to balance the chemicals; the water usually takes between 4 and 8 hours to warm up to the desired temperature.

Q. Are inground hot tubs hard to maintain?

Inground hot tubs are not hard to maintain, but they do need regular cleaning and maintenance to keep them in good shape. While some hot tubs have an automatic circulation cycle that runs the water through the filtration system to keep it clean, others do not have that option. Hot tub owners should turn on their hot tub for 15 to 20 minutes, twice a day, to filter and clean the water. Sticking to a regular cleaning schedule and regularly cleaning the water filters can keep larger problems at bay.

Q. How often should you drain a hot tub?

Hot tubs should be drained at least three or four times a year for a deep cleaning.

Q. Can a hot tub be installed in the ground?

Yes, hot tubs can be installed in the ground. An inground hot tub can create a seamless design with an inground pool installed by one of the best pool installation companies and the surrounding landscape.

Sources: Angi, HomeGuide, Modernize, Swim University