Summertime is finally here, and that means it’s time for all kinds of outdoor fun. There isn’t a better way to cool off on a hot day than to take a dip in your own pool. Backyard pools, both above-ground and in-ground, are popular features for all different kinds of houses, but they can have an effect on your homeowner’s insurance that many people prefer to avoid. Here, we’ll discuss the ways that having a pool really does affect your insurance, and what you can do to help reduce risk!
Higher Risk, Higher Premiums
While pools are great fun, they are also a major liability in your yard. They create the potential for slips and falls, drowning, flooding, and other accidents. You’ll frequently hear pools referred to in insurance circles as “attractive nuisances,” meaning that although they might be something that draws potential buyers to a house and increases its value on the market, it can also make the home more risky and thus more expensive to insure. Because of this, when your home has a pool, you can expect to see a boost in your insurance premiums because of it.
Above-Ground vs. In-Ground
While they serve the same purpose, above-ground and in-ground pools are sometimes treated differently on paper by insurance companies. The most notable example of this is that in-ground pools are usually covered by your homeowner’s insurance, but depending on your policy, an above-ground pool might not be. This is because an in-ground pool is a permanent feature of the property, but an above-ground pool could theoretically be taken down and stored or moved elsewhere, making it more of a personal belonging than an inherent part of the house.
Whether or not your type of pool is covered is something that will depend on your own individual insurance, and is something to be discussed with your insurance agent!
Is Pool Damage Covered?
Homeowner’s insurance helps to protect you from the costs incurred when your house is damaged, so you may be wondering if damage to your pool is also covered under your insurance policy. The short answer is yes and no. The long answer is that if your pool, above-ground or in-ground, is included in your insurance policy, some events will likely be covered, but others won’t be. For example, instances that are commonly covered include damage from fire, lightning, hail, or vandalism, but if your pool is damaged through general wear and tear, water freezing, flooding, or pool cover collapses due to the weight of snow, rain, or ice, these instances will likely not be covered. The specifics of covered events will vary from policy to policy, so you’ll need to carefully consider this factor when you’re choosing your homeowner’s insurance!
The liability risks that come along with having a pool are part of what make it more expensive to insure, but there are steps you can take to reduce these risks and prevent accidents, some of which may already be required by law in your area. For example, you can install a child-safe, self-latching fence around your pool to keep out kids and pets. You can also install extra lights in the pool area, use a safety cover when you aren’t swimming, and create a non-slip area on the surface directly around your pool. These precautions can help to keep people from getting hurt, reducing your liability risk!
Having a pool in your yard can make your homeowner’s insurance a bit more complicated, but with the help of the home insurance experts at YMI, you can navigate your policy with ease!