Monday, June 04, 2018 / by Dane Carlson
Whether you’re in the market for a home with a pool or not, you may end up wanting to make an offer on a home that has a pool. It’s important to understand both the responsibilities that come with pool ownership as well as safety and liability concerns. Here’s what to consider if you’re thinking about buying a home with a pool.
Cost of upkeep
According to HomeAdvisor, the average monthly cost of maintaining a pool is approximately $190. You’ll want to factor this amount into your projected monthly expenses when you’re determining whether or not you can reasonably afford the house. That number includes general upkeep such as cleaning and maintaining the proper chemical balance of the water. You’ll also want to consider additional costs you may incur with a pool, such as heating the water, replacing broken parts like a pump motor, fixing leaks, and resurfacing as needed. Be sure to ask the seller if they have had any issues with maintenance so you understand what may be required when you assume ownership.
How it affects insurance
When you’re shopping around for home insurance, you’ll want to choose a policy that covers your pool. Typically a pool is considered “other structures” in a homeowners’ policy. You need to ensure that you have enough coverage for potential repairs down the line. In addition, be sure to have enough liability coverage for your pool. This will cover health insurance claims should anyone get injured and incur medical costs. Understand that pools are considered an “attractive nuisance” and that you’re liable for anyone using it, regardless of whether or not they have permission.
Proper fencing is essential
While requirements vary from location to location, most places insist that you have a fence installed around your pool. Fences typically need to be a certain height with gates that close on their own. The fence is usually installed either around the perimeter of the yard or around the pool itself.
Other safety equipment
In addition to proper fencing, you might also want to have other safety equipment for your pool. This includes pool alarms, pool signs, and water rescue equipment. There are even products available that can assist your pet should it fall into the pool and have trouble escaping.
Know who built the pool
When buying a home that has a pool, find out who built and installed the pool. You can then research that contractor to find out about their quality of work and what kinds of issues other owners have reported. Knowing who built the pool will also come in handy should you need repairs down the line. It’s helpful to be able to hire someone who is already familiar with the work that has been done in the past.
Prepare for fun
Lastly, don’t forget that pools can be great fun! Even though there’s a responsibility that comes with pool ownership, the reason people build pools is because they provide endless entertainment. Imagine the kinds of backyard parties you can have and how the pool can benefit your exercise routine. In the end, buying a home with a pool can be a great investment and bring you and your family happiness for many years.