Installing a pool on your property adds value to your home and brings a whole new world of fun and relaxation to your backyard. Additionally, they can also be a liability and need to be properly covered by your homeowners insurance. If you recently added a new pool or are considering adding one, the following guide will help you discover all you need to know about insurance coverage for pools.
Does Homeowners Insurance Cover Swimming Pools?
In-ground and above-ground pools have different coverage eligibility for swimming pool coverage. Each insurer also has their own insurance requirements for pools. Generally, if your swimming pool is damaged or destroyed by a covered peril, dwelling, personal property, or other structures coverage may cover its repair or replacement.
What is Not Covered by Homeowners Insurance
A homeowners insurance policy will typically not cover certain incidents when it comes to the condition of your pool. Wear and tear to your pool is not covered by your homeowners insurance. Lack of maintenance that causes damage to your pool likely won’t be covered. In areas with freezing temperatures, failure to drain water from all equipment will likely result in cracks and leaks, which will likely not be covered. Flood damage is also excluded from most homeowners insurance policies.
Homeowners Insurance Options for Your Swimming Pool
It’s essential for your pool to be covered by homeowners insurance in the event your pool is damaged by a natural disaster or someone is injured while swimming in your pool. Your pool may already be covered by a standard homeowners insurance policy. There are also options available for adding coverage to your existing policy to ensure your pool is fully covered.
Other Structures Coverage
Other structures coverage covers damaged structures other than your home. If your swimming pool is an in-ground pool, it belongs to the other structures coverage. If your in-ground pool is damaged by a covered peril, including wind, fire, vandalism, lightning strikes, and hail, it will be covered up to the limits of your other structures coverage which is normally 10% of the dwelling value.
Personal Property Coverage
If your pool is above-ground and portable, it’s considered personal property. If your above-ground pool is damaged by a covered peril, it will be covered up to the limits of your personal property coverage. Keep in mind there may be a policy limit and a category limit for your pool under this type of coverage.
Other Structures Coverage
In-ground pools and above-ground pools that are permanently installed may be considered as an “other structure”. Depending on the limits of your “other structures” coverage, your pool will also be covered if it is damaged by a covered peril.
Personal Liability Coverage
Your homeowners policy usually does not cover pool-related injuries. Choosing the right personal liability coverage helps to protect you financially and legally. If someone is invited to your home and gets hurt in your pool, you could be held responsible for their injuries. This type of coverage helps cover medical and legal costs associated with the accident.
Pool owners have the option of purchasing umbrella insurance if they want extra protection for their pool. While an umbrella policy is similar to personal liability coverage, it provides additional liability coverage after your homeowners coverage is exhausted. It offers higher liability limits and coverage than your standard policy.
How to Keep Your Pool Safe
The right safety measures can help you prevent pool-related accidents and injuries.
· Put up a fence around your pool
· Install a self-latching gate
· Use a safety cover and remove ladders when the pool is not in use
· Install a non-skid deck/surface around in-ground pools to reduce falling or slipping
Be sure to let your insurance agent know if you plan on installing a pool in your backyard as they can help you obtain the right coverage you need. A homeowner's policy gives you peace of mind in case of an accident, so you'll be able to enjoy your new pool all summer long.