Family earns $177,000 renting out backyard pool to strangers…

When Jim Battan spent $110,000 building a luxury pool outside his home in West Linn, Oregon in 2012, he knew he was making an investment.

He couldn’t have known that 10 years later, he’d earn more than enough to pay it off by renting it out to strangers on the internet. Battan says that since September 2020, his pool has hosted roughly 9,000 swimmers through a platform called Swimply, which dubs itself the Airbnb of swimming pools. The result, according to documents reviewed by CNBC Make It: $177,000 in revenue in less than two years.

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“I love to say that [the pool] has paid for itself and more,” Battan, 57, tells CNBC Make It. “I built a man cave last year, and also credit that to my Swimply pool.”

Battan says the experience isn’t for everyone: Hosting a rentable pool isn’t as simple as laying out fresh towels between visits. He says he’s paid roughly $37,000 on maintenance over the past decade for the 26-foot by 18-foot pool, along with its pool house. From cleaning and testing the water’s chemicals to managing all the bookings, Battan estimates he and his wife, Lisa Battan, spend roughly 12 to 14 hours per week on their side hustle.


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