Homeowners insurance policies usually include basic liability protection that covers the costs of medical care for others injured at your home. You do not necessarily need to buy additional insurance with an in-ground pool, but additional liability on your home insurance or an umbrella insurance policy is usually a good idea.
Pools, especially in-ground pools, come with significant risks. Thousands of people are injured each year in pool-related accidents and the Center for Disease Control indicates more than 3,400 people drown each year. Fencing in your pool helps stop unsupervised use, but other risks include falls on patio surfaces, filter accidents, electrical issues and diving accidents. You also have to deal with the potential for irresponsible use and behavior that adds to the dangers. Accidents on your property put you at risk for liability for medical claims and possible civil lawsuits.
Homeowners Insurance Basics
Home insurance policies usually include coverage for replacement costs, property damages and personal liability. The liability coverage includes protection that pays for medical costs of other people injured on your property. Typical policies come with $100,000 in liability benefits. However, with a pool and other riskier property features, you should consider raising your protection to $300,000 to $500,000. Let your agent know you have a pool and talk about these options.
If you do not feel like extra homeowners liability offers enough coverage, you can buy a personal liability policy known as umbrella insurance. This gives you broad personal liability coverage. This makes sense if you often have people in your home or live in a busy neighborhood with regular guests. Having a pool significantly increases your risks as a homeowner. While your homeowners insurance often covers medical costs when someone is injured, lawsuits may get into millions of dollars in damages.
Getting extra homeowners liability coverage or adding an umbrella policy is usually affordable. Insurance companies analyze stats to decide their risks of covering your home with a pool. An in-ground pool typically costs more to cover, but a fenced in, smaller sized pool may lower your premium costs. You can often buy a $1 million umbrella policy for just a few hundred dollars a year.
Neil Kokemuller has been an active business, finance and education writer and content media website developer since 2007. He has been a college marketing professor since 2004. Kokemuller has additional professional experience in marketing, retail and small business. He holds a Master of Business Administration from Iowa State University.