COVID-19 has taken away many of the outdoor activities that we are used to. This includes public pools. However, not all is lost if you are looking for a private place to swim.
Swimply allows you to search for nearby private pools that you can rent by the hour. If you have a pool and want to rent it out, Swimply could provide some nice side gig income. Let's see how this take on Airbnb works.
- Affordable hourly private pool rentals
- Hosts and guests must each pay service fees
- Guests sign liability waivers, but no host insurance is provided
Rent or list private pools
Renter Service Fee
Host Service Fee
Who Is Swimply?
Swimply calls itself the "Airbnb for swimming pools.” It was founded in July 2018 and is based in Cedarhurst, New York. Bunim Laskin is the founder and CEO. The co-founder and CMO is Asher Weinberger. The company has raised $1 million in a seed round.
Swimply appeared in Season 11 (2019) of Shark Tank. Their idea was pitched to Sharks but, unfortunately, no one bit. The pitch was 5% for $300,000. That pitch valued the company at $6 million.
“We’ve seen demand skyrocket. We simply cannot keep up,” said Weinberger to CNBC. “There are people who are now desperate to get out of their homes. They’re working from home. There’s no school. There’s no camp. What are parents supposed to do with their kids?”
What Do They Offer?
Swimply is a marketplace for swimming pools. People list their pools on Swimply’s website and earn money at the listed rate. Swimply takes a 15% cut from all pool rentals.
Swimply is also working on another service called JoySpace. It is similar to the pool rental concept, except that it is for spaces. These include tennis and basketball courts, home gyms, and decks.
The Swimply model divides customers into hosts (who rent out their pools) and guests (who rent pools). Rentals are by the hour. The two sections below describe the Swimply experience.
To rent a pool on Swimply, you first create an account and then list your pool. Before any pool can be used, it must be inspected. Swimply works with local contractors to inspect each pool. When creating a listing for a pool, all of the following can be listed:
- Photos of pool area
- Pool dimensions
- Depth of pool
- Amenities (such as a BBQ pit or water toys)
- Use of chlorine in pool
- Use of restroom
- Maximum number of guests
- Fee for each additional guest over the limit
- Restrictions on children and/or pets
- Sounds restrictions
- Availability of Wi-Fi
- Any rules such as no glass
- Level of privacy
There’s a lot that can be listed and the more you provide, the more likely you are to land renters. Guests can also leave a review for your pool.
Swimply will take 15% of the total fee for each rental. If your hourly rate is $50 and is rented for two hours, the total will be $100. After the Swimply fee of $15, your net earnings will be $85.
The big question you’re probably wondering about is — how does Swimply handle insurance? After all, allowing strangers in your pool presents potential liability issues. All guests sign a waiver that indemnifies the pool owner of any accidents. Of course, you’ll still want to check with your home insurance company so that you aren’t exposed in any way.
One of the biggest issues guests may run into is availability. Depending on where you live, there may not be many pools to choose from. If you live in a large city, such as Los Angeles, your odds of finding a pool will be much better.
Currently, Swimply is available in 39 states and Australia. If you are able to find a nearby pool, be sure to check past guest reviews before booking. And know that you'll pay a 10% service fee in addition to the per-hour cost of the pool.
Are There Any Fees?
For hosts, Swimply keeps 15% of the rate. For guests, the rate is what a host charges by the hour. Rates range from $15 to $300 per hour.
How Do I Open An Account?
You can visit https://swimply.com to open an account as a guest or host.
Is My Money Safe?
Yes, no money is on deposit with Swimply, and its website uses encryption. Guest pay by credit card. Hosts are paid through Stripe, which is a payment processing platform.
Is It Worth It?
As a host, yes, Swimply can be worth it if you're comfortable with the liability risk. While Swimply does make guests sign a waiver and your home insurance may provide additional protection, the potential liability could still add stress to your life. There are also smaller liability concerns like guests breaking or damaging your property.
Liability issues aside, if you like the idea of renting out your pool to strangers, the service could provide some nice side hustle income. And if you're a guest with Swimply rentals nearby, it could help you find a place to swim during a time when many public pools are still unavailable.
Rent or list private pools
Renter Service Fee
10% of pool rental cost
Host Service Fee
15% of pool rental income
Host Listing Fee
Each host sets their own cancellation policy
Limit of one canceled reservation per 3-month period
Guests must sign liability waiver
Host Payment Processor
Host Payout Options
Host Payout Frequency
After each booking
Customer Service Number
Customer Service Email
Mobile App Availability
iOS and Android
Pricing and Fees
Safety and Security
Swimply is a website and mobile app that makes it easy to rent or book private pools in your local community by the hour.
- Immediate host payouts after each booking
- Robust pool-search filtering options
- All guests sign liability waivers
- Solid mobile experience
- Not available in all 50 states
- No host insurance protection
- Newer site with limited online reviews
Robert Farrington is America’s Millennial Money Expert® and America’s Student Loan Debt Expert™, and the founder of The College Investor, a personal finance site dedicated to helping millennials escape student loan debt to start investing and building wealth for the future. You can learn more about him on the About Page, or on his personal site RobertFarrington.com.
He regularly writes about investing, student loan debt, and general personal finance topics geared towards anyone wanting to earn more, get out of debt, and start building wealth for the future.
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