UPDATED: SEPTEMBER 11, 2023 | 2 MIN READ
With approximately 10.4 million residential swimming pools in the United States, it’s clear that pools are a popular addition to many homes. However, as a homeowner, you should understand the basics of pool insurance to ensure you and your family are fully protected. From coverage considerations to safety requirements, navigating pool insurance can be complex.
We’ll dive into the impact of pools on homeowners insurance, explore the conditions set by insurance companies, and provide insights into the coverage options available. Whether you already have a pool or are considering installing one, this comprehensive guide will equip you with the knowledge to make informed decisions and safeguard your property.
How a pool affects homeowners insurance
When it comes to homeowners insurance, pools can significantly impact your coverage. Understanding how pools are covered and the associated risks is essential for every pool owner. Let’s explore the different aspects of pool insurance and how they affect your homeowners policy.
Homeowners insurance usually covers pools
Homeowners coverage typically extends to the pool itself as well as any structures associated with it, such as decks or fences. In the event of covered perils, such as damage caused by a windstorm or fire, the insurance policy would generally compensate the homeowner for the repair or replacement costs of the pool. The coverage and limits may vary depending on the insurance company and policy terms.
Differentiating coverage for in-ground and above-ground pools
Insurance companies categorize in-ground and above-ground pools separately when determining coverage under homeowners insurance policies. For example, an in-ground pool is covered under the “other structures” portion of the policy, which includes coverage for structures that are not attached to the main dwelling, such as detached garages or sheds.
On the other hand, an above-ground pool fall under the “personal property” section, which covers movable possessions within the insured property. By differentiating coverage based on the type of pool, insurance companies can tailor the policy terms and premiums to account for the unique characteristics and risks associated with each pool type.
Higher liability coverage for increased risks
Homeowners insurance policies often require higher liability coverage for properties with certain risk factors, such as swimming pools. Pools introduce additional hazards and potential liabilities, such as the risk of accidents, injuries, or drowning incidents. Insurance companies recognize these increased risks and may mandate homeowners to carry higher liability coverage limits to protect against potential claims or legal expenses related to pool-related incidents.
Umbrella insurance for additional liability coverage
Umbrella insurance is a type of coverage that offers an extra layer of liability protection beyond the limits of the primary policy. It serves as an additional safeguard against unforeseen incidents and potential lawsuits that may exceed the liability limits of the homeowners policy.
By having an umbrella policy, homeowners can secure higher liability coverage, often in increments of one million dollars or more, providing them with greater financial protection in case of significant claims or legal expenses resulting from pool-related accidents, injuries, or other liabilities.
Pool insurance coverage
Pool insurance coverage addresses the risks and potential damages of owning a swimming pool. Homeowners should review and understand their policies. It typically encompasses coverage for the pool structure and any related equipment, such as pumps and filters. Let’s dive into the different aspects of pool insurance coverage to ensure you have a comprehensive understanding.
Defined covered perils
Pool insurance typically covers damages resulting from covered perils. These can include natural perils like windstorms, lightning strikes, fires, and fallen trees. Additionally, damages caused by human-related factors, such as vandalism, may be included in the coverage.
Expenses not covered
While covered perils protect certain damages, it’s important to note that pool insurance does not cover certain expenses. Normal wear and tear, such as replacing old motors or pool linings, typically falls outside the coverage scope. Negligent maintenance, where damages result from improper pool upkeep, is also not covered by insurance.
Exclusion of earthquakes and floods
Standard homeowners insurance policies generally exclude damages caused by earthquakes or floods. If you live in an area prone to these natural disasters, you must understand that your pool would not be covered for damages from such events. Additional coverage specifically for earthquakes or floods may be necessary for comprehensive protection.
Swimming pool safety requirements
Understanding the importance of pool safety requirements and implementing necessary measures can significantly reduce the risk of accidents and potential liabilities. Let’s explore the essential aspects of pool safety and the requirements that can help create a secure pool environment.
Alarming statistics of pool fatalities
Residential swimming pools, unfortunately, account for many pool-related fatalities. These statistics highlight the urgent need to implement safety measures to prevent accidents and protect lives. Drowning is a heartbreaking and preventable tragedy that continues to claim the lives of too many children.
In the United States, the statistics are staggering. For children aged one to four, drowning surpasses all other causes of death, making it a critical issue that demands our attention. Even among children aged five to 14, drowning ranks as the second leading cause of unintentional injury death, right after motor vehicle crashes.
for every child under 18 who tragically loses their life to drowning, another seven require emergency department care for nonfatal drowning. Shockingly, almost 40% of these nonfatal drowning cases treated in emergency departments require hospitalization or further care, surpassing the rate for other unintentional injuries. The consequences of drowning can be devastating, often resulting in brain damage and long-term disabilities.
General swimming pool safety requirements for pool owners
To minimize the risk of accidents and potentially reduce insurance premiums, there are several essential safety requirements to consider:
- Install a lockable, childproof fence: A sturdy fence with a minimum height of 4 feet should surround the pool area. This fence should have a lockable gate to prevent unauthorized access, particularly by young children.
- Ensure proper lighting: Adequate lighting around the pool area is crucial for visibility, reducing the likelihood of accidents during evening or nighttime use.
- Considerations for diving boards and slides: Insurance companies may have specific safety requirements for diving boards and slides. Ensure your diving board has a non-skid surface and your slide meets manufacturer requirements regarding depth, height from water, and slope.
- Requirements for above-ground pool ladders: Some insurance companies may require above-ground pool owners to either lock the ladder or remove it when it is not in use. Check with your insurance provider to understand their specific guidelines.
- Pool entry alarms: While not always a requirement, installing a pool entry alarm can add an extra layer of safety. These alarms detect motion in the water and alert you to potential accidents, allowing you to remain vigilant and respond quickly.
- Pool cover: Using a pool cover not only keeps your pool clean but can help keep small children or pets from falling in and drowning
- Non-slip surface: To avoid slip and fall accidents, ensure the surface around your pool have a non-slip surface.
Does homeowners insurance usually cover swimming pools?
Yes, homeowners insurance typically covers swimming pools, but the extent of coverage may vary depending on the insurance company and the type of pool (in-ground or above-ground). Review your policy to understand the specific coverage details.
What safety requirements should I consider for my pool to reduce accidents and potential liability risks?
A lockable, childproof fence around the pool is a crucial safety requirement. Adequate lighting, addressing safety considerations for diving boards and slides, complying with ladder requirements for above-ground pools, and considering the use of pool entry alarms are additional measures to enhance safety.
Are damages to my pool covered by insurance?
Damages to your pool are generally covered by insurance if they result from covered perils, such as natural disasters (windstorms, lightning strikes, fires) or human-related damages (vandalism). However, normal wear and tear or damages due to negligent maintenance are typically not covered.
Are earthquakes and floods damage to my pool covered in a standard homeowners insurance policy?
No, earthquakes and floods are typically excluded from standard homeowners insurance policies. If you live in an area prone to these natural disasters, consider additional coverage specifically for earthquakes or floods.
Can installing safety measures for my pool affect my insurance premiums?
Implementing safety measures for your pool, such as a lockable fence, proper lighting, and pool entry alarms, can reduce the risk of accidents and liabilities. Insurers may view these proactive steps favorably, which could lead to lower insurance premiums or discounts on your policy. Consult with your insurance provider for specific details on premium reductions.
Find affordable home insurance for your pool home
To protect your pool by filling out our online home insurance comparison form, take the next step. With just a few simple details, we’ll gather quotes from top insurance providers, allowing you to compare coverage options and find the policy that suits your needs.
Don’t leave your pool and property vulnerable to potential risks. Take control of your insurance decisions and secure the peace of mind you deserve. Fill out our online form and make informed choices to protect what matters most.
AgileRates extracted and analyzed data from the following to provide data in this article.
- “Pool and safety insurance” (iii.org)
- “Best Pool Safety Equipment – Our Top Picks” (poolmagazine.com)
- “Does Insurance Require a Fence Around a Pool?” (guardianpoolfence.com)
- How Much Does Pool Insurance Per Month?
- Does Home Insurance Cover Pool Leaks?
- Swimming Pool Exclusions and Limitations of Home Insurance
- What Is Flood Insurance and Do You Need It?
- Pool Damage and Insurance Claims
- Insurance Discounts for Pool Owners