Does homeowners insurance cover your backyard pool?
Does homeowners insurance cover damage to a pool?
Homeowners insurance typically helps pay to repair a pool if it's damaged by one of the risks covered by your policy. Covered risks usually include fire and falling objects. So if, for instance, a tree falls on your pool, homeowners insurance will likely help pay for repairs, up to the limits stated in your policy. Keep in mind that homeowners policies exclude coverage for damage caused if water freezes in your pool, so you'll want to be sure you drain it at the end of each season.
Difference in coverage for types of pools
The coverage that applies to a pool depends on what kind of pool you own. Permanently installed above-ground pools and most in-ground pools are generally covered by the other structures coverage in a homeowners policy, while portable-style, above-ground pools that you could take with you if you move are usually covered by personal property coverage.
Your agent can help you determine whether you should consider increasing your coverage limits based on the value of your pool and any accessories, such as a deck or water slide.
Homeowners insurance and liability coverage for swimming pools
If you have a swimming pool, it's also important to understand how the liability coverage of your homeowners insurance may come into play. If a guest is injured at your pool, you could potentially incur medical or legal expenses that stem from the incident. Liability protection is a standard part of a typical homeowners policy, but because a pool can increase your liability risk, you may want to consider increasing your coverage, the Insurance Information Institute (III) says.
A homeowners policy typically provides $100,000 in base liability coverage. The III recommends increasing those limits if you have a backyard pool.
It's also a good idea to take safety precautions to help keep your pool secure and prevent injuries. For instance, you may want to install a fence around your pool and move the ladder away from your above-ground pool while it's not in use. Be sure to follow any local laws pertaining to pool construction and safety.
Do I need extra insurance for my pool?
To add an extra layer of protection, the III says pool owners should consider purchasing a personal umbrella policy. An umbrella insurance policy provides liability coverage above the limits of your homeowners policy. Umbrella protection begins when you've exhausted the required underlying insurance amount of your homeowners policy. Your agent can help you determine whether you have appropriate protection in place on your underlying policy to help prevent a gap in your coverage.
If you have a pool or you're planning to install one, it's a good idea to let your insurer know, the III says. While pools are typically covered by homeowners insurance policies, you'll probably want to review your coverage to make sure you have the right amount of protection in place.
By choosing appropriate insurance coverage and limits, you can gain the peace of mind that comes with knowing you have protection in place just in case a mishap occurs.