How Much Does a Hot Tub Cost?
A Guide to Understanding Hot Tub Pricing
The Big Question: How do I Find Hot Tub Prices?
Everybody knows roughly how much cars cost, or TVs, or standard home improvements. However, hot tubs are not a consumer item that most people think about until they are ready to buy.
In this article I want to help by giving you some information on what you can generally expect to pay for a hot tub, based on factors like type, quality and size.
Since hot tub pricing is set at the local market level, we can’t get specific on the price for every model in every configuration. The very best place to get more specific hot tub pricing is at your local Authorized hot tub dealer. These businesses can offer the best prices on hot tubs and spas in your area and have the local knowledge of water chemistry, codes, and climate that will help you get set up correctly.
Additionally, to find prices on a Bullfrog Spa in a specific model, you can utilize our SpaDesign software to configure a specific model with the colors, JetPaks and options you choose. Enter your information and it will be sent to your local Bullfrog Spas dealer who can provide a no-obligation price quote on your spa.
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|Expected hot tub cost||High-end hot tub prices|
|Explanation of hot tub pricing||Mid-tier hot tub prices|
|Hot tub cost over time||Low-end hot tub prices|
|Energy cost of a hot tub||Get a local price on a Bullfrog Spa|
How much is a Hot Tub?
Research in the USA and Canada hot tub markets shows that until consumers begin more detailed hot tub pricing research they are likely to assume that hot tubs cost about $5,000 USD.
Well, this price range is not far off and some hot tubs actually do cost around $5,000 but this must be qualified. In fact, most quality portable spas actually cost a little bit more than this, a few hot tubs cost less. I’ll try to break this down and offer some clarity on prices you can expect to pay for a hot tub.
Important Factors to Consider in Hot Tub Pricing
It would be easy to simply say that you get what you pay for in hot tubs. While this is obviously true of many if not most consumer goods, there are unfortunately a few companies out there that prey on the general lack of understanding of what makes a true quality hot tub.
Keep in mind that the vast majority of dedicated spa retailers out there are honest and hard working and carry great products, they wouldn’t stay in business otherwise. There are only a few of these companies to watch out for and you can usually pick them out by their tactics. Watch out for things like high pressure in-home presentations, traveling “spa shows” that really only feature spas sold by one company and other fly by night tactics. What’s most important when looking at an investment like a quality portable spa is understanding how to evaluate quality makes and quality retailers, then looking at pricing in terms of the total value you are getting for your dollar.
There are many additional factors that affect pricing. Features and options, add-on accessories and sometimes even colors and finishes can all affect pricing.
For the sake of simplicity and arriving at a general understanding, in this article we’ll talk in terms of base pricing for well-equipped mid-size spas without additional all the additional add-ons like sound systems and accessories like steps, surrounds and cover lifts.
Why You’re Here – Prices on Hot Tubs
TOP TIER – $9,000 TO $18,000
Most high-end hot tubs built by the top manufacturers with quality acrylic shells and well-built frames and cabinets will cost around $9,000 – $18,000 in the United States and Canada. Consider things like how well the hot tub is engineered, what materials it uses, what jet technology is used, where it is mades, what equipment like pumps and heaters are used, and the overall reputation of the company. Using these factors you can determine which hot tubs are the high quality spas and which will give you the best value in this price range.
Pay attention to the design, sophistication of manufacturing facilities and engineering technologies, reputation of the manufacturer, and materials used throughout the spa structure.
MID TIER – $5,000 TO $8,000
The same quality hot tub manufacturers mentioned above usually offer a mid-price, high-quality spa line that will cost $5,000 – $8,000. These spas usually have fewer features and less complete hydrotherapy, but still offer good reliability and comfort.
As you shop, you will also find other companies selling lesser quality spas in this price range. Many big box retailers will pass off a lesser quality spa as “premium” in this price range and even some spa companies that have been around for a while would now qualify as low to mid-quality and yet still usually sell in this range.
LOW-END TIER – $3,000 TO $4,000
Cheap hot tubs will cost you around $3,000 – $4,000. There are really only a few manufacturers making a quality entry-level spa in this range. Look for the better names first, however, if this is the price range where you’re looking, it is wise to beware.
Many spas in this price range are made using methods that produce a product with a limited usable life. Many of these spas are built to be inflatable, are roto-molded like your kayak or folding pic-nic table, or are built with poor materials and workmanship from knock-off overseas companies. These hot tubs can be ok if you’re looking for a very short-term or no-frills experience. One more consideration also creeps in at this price level – cost to operate. Most of these “low cost” hot tubs are so poorly insulated you will end up paying far more in the long run. Your energy bills will let you know it. This leads us to the last thing you’ll want to factor into your decision – cost over time.
One More Thing to Consider, Hot Tub Costs Over Time
When you’re making your decision on which hot tub to buy you should, of course, start with initial quality. You also need to consider how much your hot tub will cost to operate over time. This decision has 2 basic components.
- The expected life of your hot tub or durability
- The cost of operation associated with your hot tub
These factors, combined with your initial purchase price will give you the lifetime cost of ownership for your spa. Look for 2 things to minimize your lifetime cost of ownership – quality construction and energy efficiency.
Quality Pays You Back
Keep in mind that these are outdoor hot tubs. They are exposed to the environment every day, all day. A well-built hot tub will last you much longer than a poor quality spa, often a decade or more. This means your initial purchase price will be spread over more years of use.
Example: a quality spa that costs you $10,000 initially and lasts 10 years costs you the same per year as a poor quality spa that costs you $3,000 and only lasts for 3 years. Probably less when energy is factored in.
Energy Cost of a Hot Tub
Using the example above, in reality, the quality spa actually costs less overall over time. It lasts longer and eliminates the need to reinstall a new spa every few years. And, in addition to longevity, a quality spa will also use far less energy and require less maintenance.
High quality spas are usually full foam insulated except for the area where pumps and heaters are located. This helps to isolate the hot water in the spa from the cold and keep warmth within. Full foam insulated spas require much less energy to keep them ready to use.
One way to find energy efficient hot tubs is to look at the data compiled by the California Energy Commission, which keeps hot tub energy use statistics. Pay attention to the spa brands that consistently show at the top of these lists.
You Will Love a Quality Hot Tub for Years to Come
Hot tubs are extremely nice to own for many reasons. So it makes sense that you will want to own yours for as long as possible. When you decide to go with a top quality spa, engineered and built to last, you will have always-ready hydrotherapy, relaxation, and fun right in your own backyard. No other product offers as many health and lifestyle benefits.
So, consider the quality and value first when making your decision on which hot tub is best for you. Your purchase price may be a little higher, but you will be rewarded with better features, better hydrotherapy, and a lower cost of ownership over time.
Design Your Spa Online to Get a Specific Price Quote
We are very aware that getting a specific price on a specific hot tub model can be a process. Most quality hot tubs are sold through independent dealerships that set their own pricing. A local spa professional provides several additional value points, including product expertise, maintenance advice, additional services, knowledge of local climate and water chemistry, and custom spa configuration services to meet your personal preferences and local code requirements.
The best way to obtain a specific price on a Bullfrog Spa model in your area is to use our SpaDesign software to set up and design the spa you want. When you submit this design you will be provided with the contact information for your local spa expert. With a SpaDesign completed you can set up a visit to discuss specific pricing on the specific model you are looking at in the configuration that best suits your lifestyle.
Read 25 Questions You Need to Ask Before Buying a Hot Tub!
Answer all of your important questions before you buy. This informative buyer’s guide helps you ask the right questions and get the answers you need about a new spa. It’s a quick read you simply shouldn’t miss before buying your new hot tub.