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Metro family rents out their pool to help others beat the heat

The average price to rent on Swimply is $45 an hour, and there are five current listings in the Des Moines metro.

WINDSOR HEIGHTS, Iowa — Beating the heat this summer is more difficult as some Des Moines Pools and Aquatic Centers are alternating weeks they're closed.

To make up for the lack of pool availability, one metro family is renting out theirs on a pool renting app called Swimply

Threase Harms, a Swimply pool host, said this is something she fell into.

She's one of many people renting out their home pools both in the metro and nationwide.

Swimply Spokesperson Kristen Marion said that over 150,000 bookings of pools have been made this year.

Harms said she wanted to join this app because in 2020 community pools were closed due to COVID-19, and this year some pools are closed on alternating weeks because of staffing shortages.

For Harms, being a Swimply host is one way to help the community.

"We thought it was an opportunity to share," Harms said. "It was about other people being able to use our pool because we weren't using it."

Though Harms said renting out her pool isn't all about money, the profit is a major part of Swimply for some. 

Another family with a listing on the app we spoke to said renting out their pool does help bring in extra, helpful income. 

The average price to rent a pool on the app is $45 an hour, and rates are set by the owner. 

As far as safety is concerned, Marion said that users can be assured they are renting a pool at a trustworthy person's house because of the vetting systems in place on the app. 

"Some of the ways we promote safety are through our review system, our in-platform chat system, and our verification system marking verified users. Swimply also conducts background checks utilizing a third-party background check system to check for past criminal activity," Marion said. 

Marion said the average user can make between $3,000 and $5,000 a year, but some people have made six figures. 

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