Just wanted to add my thanks to the list. Its really nice to read a good, honest informative post as I know it can be difficult as its you opinion.
If you don't mind me saying you have a lot of $ so I am sure that you have a lovely house for that. Does your house have the pool or the room to put one in?
How realistic is it to get a house, on a plot big enough for a pool for <$350k???? What suburbs in your opinion would suit this budget?