Pools are fun ways to enjoy summer, but owning one can be a pain when it comes to insurance and taxes. It all depends on if the pool adds value to your home or just liabilities. The answer often depends on the type of pool.
An above-ground pool will increase your homeowner’s insurance. Most insurance companies see this type of pool as a potential safety hazard and will treat it accordingly. However, your pool’s style, size, and features will be what determine the actual effect on your insurance.
Despite the increase in insurance premiums, most above-ground pools rarely affect your property’s value outside some rare cases. By reading further, you will learn what these cases are and the caveats they bring.
If you own a home, you need homeowner’s insurance. This insurance coverage should cover you against loss including both damage and theft. However, having a pool complicates things. That is because it requires considering factors that are normally ignorable.
The main issue is that different insurers treat pools differently, especially if it is an above-ground pool. As such, depending on your insurance policy, your pool may fall under the:
- Dwelling coverage – the pool is considered a part of your home
- Other structures coverage – the pool is considered separate from your home
- Personal property coverage – the pool is just an asset you own
- Liability coverage – for any potential safety risks
Regardless of which type of coverage your pool falls under, you can expect to pay a higher premium just because you have a pool. The higher price comes from the additional injury risks as well as any potential repair or replacement costs.
To make matters worse, your pool may fall under multiple coverages. In such scenarios, you may want to get all of them. This is especially true for liability coverage because most insurers label pools as “attractive nuisances”.
Above-ground pools draw people to them, increasing their potential for injury and harm. Your visitors could drown, slip and fall, electrocute themselves, or anything in between.
However, most standard homeowner’s insurance policies rarely cover these risks. Even if they do, the coverage is rarely adequate for most situations.
As such, most experts agree that you should at least add additional liability protections to your coverage. Many even recommend getting umbrella home insurance just to be safe.
Here’s a quick video explanation of insurance costs:
The added insurance costs may make you wonder if owning an above-ground pool is still worth it. Sure, every pool salesperson boasts of the wonders of owning their pools along with their numerous options and payment plans. But, are the pools worth the additional hidden costs?
- Above-ground pools are cheap and ugly – while aesthetics is subjective, they do not look as good as in-ground pools.
- Above-ground pools add no value to your property – they are not permanent additions. As a result, they tend to depress property values instead of increasing them. This can make it difficult to sell the home.
- Above-ground pool features are limited – they are usually prepackaged with very little customization if at all.
- Above-ground pools rarely last forever – while the best can last for decades, they will all break down under the elements.
Besides these downsides, owning an above-ground pool does come with a few benefits. These befits go beyond just being a lot of fun and can be the reason you got your pool in the first place.
For instance, an above-ground pool is:
- Relatively affordable – above-ground pool prices range from a few hundred to a thousand dollars compared to the tens of thousands required for an in-ground pool.
- Easy to install – Depending on the size, shape, and features, you could set up an above-ground pool as a do-it-yourself project.
- Easy to disassemble and store – You may not always need or want a pool in your backyard. With an above-ground pool, you can easily uninstall it as well. You can then install the pieces to reinstall them later once things change again. Letting you adjust things according to your changing lifestyle and needs.
- Easy to dispose or resell – If you have no future plans to use your above-ground pool, you can easily resell and recoup some of the money you pay for it.
You will have to decide if these benefits outweigh the downsides and their associated costs. In most cases, if you want a pool, your best bet would be to get an in-ground one. Although, getting a higher-end model above-ground pool could be useful if you cannot yet get an in-ground one.
As mentioned above, most above-ground pools will not affect your property’s value. They are considered temporary structures. As such, any effect should be minimal at best. However, these pools do hold a dark secret. Under the right circumstances, they can decrease the value of your home.
- It all comes down to how well-maintained you keep your pool.
- Remember, your pool is a liability hazard.
- Any potential buyer for your home will want to know the quality of the pool before making an offer.
- This is especially true if you plan on selling the pool with the property.
- Plus, you probably ripped up the lawn to create a level pad for the pool.
The only above-ground pools that might improve your property’s value are the higher-end models, but only if they are well-maintained and you live in an area where in-ground pools are impractical. Even then you may want to consider removing the pool if you ever decide to sell the place.
The only bright side to all of this would be the lower property taxes. Property taxes are normally based on the sellable property value of your home. So, the value decrease could save you some money every year. However, you should check with your local tax assessor to see the true effect your above-ground pool has on your home.
An above-ground pool can add a place of fun and enjoyment to your backyard, but it will also add to your home insurance premium. Given the many downsides that come from owning a pool, your pool may even decrease the value of your home. Luckily, they are cheap and small enough not to affect your home too much.