Want to cool off in a swimming pool? There’s an app for that

If the fierce heat grabbing much of the US have you dreaming of a cool swim but you don’t have a pool, let technology be your guide. An app lets you explore private pools in your area and rent them out for a fee.

The Swimply app, launched in 2019, matches over half a million people looking for a private pool with owners looking to earn some extra cash. All types of pool owners are listed on the app, which categorizes over 25,000 different pool rentals into four levels: standard, comfort, luxury and VIP. Hourly rates range from $30 to $100.

“Our offering is very diverse, from the most modest homes to classic suburban pools to the most luxurious pools in the Hamptons,” Swimply co-founder and CEO Bunim Laskin told CBS MoneyWatch.

More than 8.7 million homes in the United States have their own underground or above-ground pools, according to market research firm PK Data.

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This private pool is available for rent in Austin, Texas for $35 an hour.

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The app has increased in popularity along with the thermometer. Since temperatures started to rise in May, Swimply has seen a 75% increase in bookings.

“There are a lot of trends working in our favor,” Laskin said, adding that his revenue had doubled in the past year.

“We’re seeing an increase in usage in specific markets where there are heat waves. We’re seeing an extra increase in Texas and the tri-state area,” he said.

For pool owners, Swimply can help offset the impact of inflation, Laskin said. “It’s something that helps people earn additional income in financially messy times.”

He said that even luxury pool owners, who presumably can afford to maintain them, have signed up to the platform.

“Some people do it for the money, a lot of people do it for the community,” he said.

About 25,000 hosts serve a community of about 500,000 Swimply users, according to the company.

Earning more than six figures

Hosts’ income through the app depends on how ambitious they are in monetizing their pools. While some users earn between $2,000 and $3,000 a year, mostly enough to cover the costs of owning a pool, others can earn more than six figures, according to Laskin.

“Other hosts make it a full-time job,” he said. “They make their pool available on weekends and allow larger groups for which they can charge more.”

Swimply’s highest-paid presenter earns just under $200,000 a year, according to the company. Swimply charges guests a 10% booking fee and charges the host 15%.

The company also has expansion plans for renting tennis courts, private gyms and other spaces.

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