If you are thinking of buying or building a swimming pool, or purchasing a home with a swimming pool, becoming educated on pool safety is an important first step.
Making sure that your pool is inaccessible to unauthorized persons is the biggest concern. You are responsible if someone is injured in your pool, whether they had permission to be there or not. Florida has specific rules and regulations for residential pools to reduce the risk of drowning (outlined in the Residential Swimming Pools Safety Act).
New pool construction
If you are having a new pool installed, your contractor is required to obtain specific permits and to provide you with the approved publication Safety Barrier Guidelines for Home Pools. Your new pool must have at least one of the following safety features:
There are also specific federal regulations for swimming pool drain covers, to avoid potential entrapment and drowning. The harder it is for young children to gain access to the pool, the lower the risks – which can mean lower homeowners insurance premiums.
Home with existing pools
Sellers are not required to bring existing pools up to Florida requirements before selling a home, but as a buyer you will have to make sure the pool is compliant and satisfy the federal, state and insurance carrier demands. This can mean retrofitting the pool to meet both barrier and drain specifications.
What does homeowners insurance cover when it comes to pools?
Home insurance generally covers the pool itself, for damage caused by events such as trees falling during a storm. (Damage caused by negligence, such a failure to properly maintain, is not covered.) Olympus also covers damage to pool screen enclosures on a full replacement basis, providing the best coverage possible as part of a standard homeowners policy.
Your homeowners policy should also provide liability protection, to cover personal injury in regard to pool use. The type and number of safety features installed can affect this portion of your premium.
Owning a Florida home with a pool is all about safety. Making sure your pool is compliant can keep everyone in the neighborhood safer, and possibly lower your insurance premium.
This article is for informational purposes only and does not form a part of, replace, change or amend any terms, conditions, provisions or language within your Olympus Insurance policy. We encourage you to read your entire policy.