Skip to content

Blog

5 Little-known Facts About Seasonal Property Insurance

5 Little-known Facts About Seasonal Property Insurance

A quick question for all the cottagers out there: what’s the difference between a bear and a skunk?

When it comes to seasonal property insurance, it’s about more than their physical differences — damage done to your cottage by bears is probably covered, while damage done by skunks probably isn’t.

Take note of these five little-known facts about seasonal property insurance coverage and talk to your broker about what is (and what isn’t) covered in your policy:

  1. The onus is on you to prevent losses or damage to your property — and if a loss can be easily prevented, it may not be covered. So if you forget to tie up your boat and it goes out with the tide, for example, you’re probably out of luck. Damage or loss caused by things outside of your control (not things you could prevent) will most likely be covered by your policy. In the bears vs. skunks scenario, the idea is that you could prevent a critter from entering your home by taking some simple precautions — but keeping a bear out might not be so easy.
  2. If you leave your cottage unattended for an extended period of time, losses or damages might not be covered. Seasonal properties need to be checked regularly for safety and security. In fact, most insurance companies have a maximum number of days you can be away before coverage could be denied (60 days, for example). So if you haven’t checked on your cottage over the winter months and the roof collapses due to snow load, you might have to cover those damages out of pocket. That’s because if you had checked on your property more regularly, removing the snow could have prevented the roof from collapsing.
    Make sure you’re checking and maintaining your property, even if it’s not prime cottage season. And don’t forget to confirm with your insurance company or broker just how many days the property can be left unattended. Your claim could be denied if you’ve left your property unattended for too long.
  3. Renting out your cottage could void your insurance policy if it’s not permitted by your insurer. While you won’t necessarily need to pay a higher premium or take out commercial coverage for occasionally renting out your seasonal property, you do need to tell your insurance company or broker. If you don’t and your renters cause damage, it may not be covered by your policy.
    Bonus tip: If you’re planning on renting out your cottage this season, check out these handy cottage rental tips to keep your property in tip-top-shape and make sure you have the coverage you need to protect your seasonal space.
  4. Water damage, not fire or theft, is the most common type of insurance claim. If you’re using your cottage year round, think about installing temperature and water alarms to notify you remotely of potential frozen pipes or flooding. If you close your property in the cooler months, don’t forget to shut off the water supply and drain your pipes, and consider using a monitored alarm or make arrangements for someone to check your property when you’re away to avoid water damage.
  5. That old boat you don’t care about could cost you big money. Even if you think it isn’t worth insuring your boat against theft or damage, getting liability protection on it is essential. If you don’t and it causes harm to someone or something, you’ll be on the hook for any injuries or damages. The same goes for other toys around your property that wouldn’t be covered by your seasonal property insurance policy, like ATVs and snowmobiles. If they present the potential to cause damage or injuries, they should be insured for liability.

Want to learn more about your seasonal property insurance policy or update your coverage? Contact your licensed insurance broker.

Read More 

Your Home Insurance Renewal Checklist

Your Home Insurance Renewal Checklist

When your home insurance renewal notice comes in the mail, do you file it away and let your coverage remain the same, year after year? You’re not alone. But it’s unlikely that you’re in the same position today as you were when you first bought your policy — and that renewal notice is a great reminder to think about how your needs may have changed, whether or not your existing coverage is still enough, and new ways you could be saving money on your insurance.

When you receive your next renewal notice, consider these five factors before just filing it away.

  1. Don’t miss out on discounts. Did you know you could qualify for discounts on home insurance if you’ve recently paid off your mortgage or installed a home security system, a monitored smoke detector, a sump pump, a backwater valve, or a new roof? These are just a few of the discounts you may be eligible for, depending on your location and your insurer. Be sure to ask your broker about all of the home insurance discounts available to you.
  2. Take stock. If it’s been a while since you’ve updated your home inventory, take a walk through your home and make sure all of your valuables are on the list. Remember that there are likely special limits in your home insurance policy for items like fine arts, jewelry, and collectors’ items. Review the limits outlined in your policy and reach out to your licensed broker if you need to add additional coverage for that recently acquired Rembrandt or ruby ring.
    Bonus tip: If you were lucky enough to receive a big-ticket gift like an autographed football, a bike, or computer software last Christmas, make sure it’s covered by your home insurance policy. Many high-value items are subject to special limits and you may need to purchase additional coverage. Learn more about insuring your big-ticket gifts.
  3. Revisit your liability limit. If something in your life has changed that may increase the chances of someone being injured on your property (maybe you have a new pet or you’ve installed a swimming pool, for example), it’s a good idea to revisit your liabilityopens a pop-up with definition of liability limit at renewal time. Learn more about how liability coverage works and talk to your broker to explore your options.  
  4. Mind your business. It’s important to talk to your broker when you first start a home-based business, but if you’ve recently taken on a new entrepreneurial venture and haven’t yet crossed that off your list, now’s the time to do it. Your broker can connect with your insurance company and make sure you have the coverage you need.
  5. Remember your renos. You may have already talked to your broker about recent renovations you’ve completed in your home, but if you haven’t, be sure to do so before you renew your policy. Your renovations may have changed the value of your home (meaning you might need to increase your coverage), or you could be eligible for new discounts.

These are just a few of the things you may want to consider when renewing your home insurance policy. You could also think about increasing your deductibles, bundling your home and car insurance policies, or seeing if you qualify for discounted insurance through your school, employer, or association to lower your premium. Next time your renewal period rolls around, reach out to your licensed broker to make sure you have the coverage you need to protect what matters most.

Read More 

How to Get Your Vehicle Ready for Summer

How to Get Your Vehicle Ready for Summer

Summer is just around the corner, and now is the perfect time to get your car back into shape after months of driving around in snow, slush, and ice.

Check these to-dos off your list to get your car ready for smooth sailing all summer:

  1. Switch from snow tires to all-season or summer tires. Winter tires are made of a softer rubber so they can stay flexible in cooler temperatures, but when the weather starts warming up, they tend to wear more quickly. Once the temperature steadily hovers above 7°, it’s time to go back to your all-season or summer tires.
  2. Change your wiper blades. Much like winter tires, winter wiper blades are made from a different rubber than their summer counterparts, so they should be changed when the weather starts to warm up. Even if your wiper blades aren’t specifically for winter, you should inspect them and replace them if they’re no longer getting the job done.
  3. Test your AC. Not only is driving around in a car without air conditioning on a hot day uncomfortable, but it can also be dangerous. Test out your AC and make sure it’s working properly before the weather gets too warm. If you hear strange sounds or suspect the air coming out of your vents is warmer than it should be, have the system inspected by a professional. 
  4. Check your brakes. Brakes can see a good deal of wear over the winter months, when traffic is much more stop-and-go than it is in the summer. Consider having your brakes inspected when you’re removing your winter tires.
  5. Keep your coolant cool. Check your coolant level and make sure the mixture of chemicals is correct. You can either do this yourself with a coolant tester from your local auto parts store or have it checked by a professional.
  6. Get an oil change. If you’re due for an oil change, consider getting it done when you have your snow tires removed to save yourself a trip later.
  7. Top up your windshield washer fluid with a summer formula. Next time your windshield washer fluid needs to be filled up, consider using a streak-free formula that targets bugs, tar, and other grime.
  8. Go for a pre-summer tune-up. Think this sounds like a lot of things to check off your list before summer rolls around? You might be surprised to find out how many of them can be taken care of in one visit to your dealership or a qualified mechanic. Ask if there’s a package deal that includes most of the items on this list, as well as fluid checks (e.g., coolant, brake fluid, power steering fluid), inspections of your engine and exhaust systems, and tests for electronic components like sensors.
  9. Give it a good wash. Salt and grime can build up on almost every part of your vehicle over the winter, from the undercarriage to the interior mats. Once the roads are clear, give your car a thorough spring cleaning. Don’t forget the undercarriage, the wheel wells, the windows, and the interior mats.
  10. Swap your winter mats for summer mats. Whether you use the original mats that came with your vehicle or aftermarket upgrades, be sure to only use mats that were manufactured specifically for your vehicle. Also, make sure they’re properly secured to avoid driving mishaps. 

While it’s important to get your car ready for summer driving, it’s just as important to make sure you have the coverage you need — from the cottage to the beach, and everywhere in between. Before you hit the road this summer, contact your licensed car insurance broker.

Read More 

Three Traffic Tickets to Avoid This Winter

Three Traffic Tickets to Avoid This Winter

Canadian winters can be harsh and a challenge to drive in, and for drivers who fail to heed the precautions that need to be taken when winter storms in, a ticket could be in the forecast that could put a further chill on the season and heat up your car insurance rates.

Skate through winter safely, and protect your premiums, by avoiding these three tickets this winter.

Take the time to clear your windows of snow and ice

To meet the challenge of winter driving, you need to be able to see out of your windows. Having a clear view of what’s in front, beside, and behind you while driving is at the very core of safe driving. However, not everyone takes the time needed to ensure that their vehicle is ready for the road ahead.

While the actual offence may vary by province, you can expect a ticket for something along the lines of an “obstructed view” if you have not fully cleaned the snow and ice off your vehicle’s windows and mirrors.

Don’t brush off, brushing off the whole car

Your windows and mirrors are not the only parts of the car you should be clearing of ice and snow; your roof, hood, lights, and signals need to be cleaned off too. And don’t forget your licence plate, because you can get a ticket for an obstructed licence plate, if it’s not clearly visible. A quick swipe with your snow brush will ensure this is one ticket you won’t get.

Slow down

Posted speed limits designate the fastest speed at which you can safely travel in optimal road conditions. When the weather is foul, or the roads are messy, you should lower your speed for safety’s sake and to avoid a ticket. And it’s not just speeding tickets you need to consider. There are other tickets you can get as well—even if you’re going the limit.

In Quebec, for example, you can be ticketed for failing to adapt your driving to the weather and road conditions (which includes a minimum $60 fine and two demerit points); while in Alberta, you can be ticketed with speeding at an unreasonable rate which will run you about $200 and four demerit points.

In Ontario, there’s no specific ticket for driving too fast for the weather conditions, but you could be charged with careless driving if it’s believed you’re driving without “due care and attention or without reasonable consideration” for others.

Play it safe and travel at a speed that takes into account the weather outside because “ice and snow means take it slow”.

Put your car insurance premiums on ice

With flurries in the forecast, it’s time to take the prospect of winter driving seriously. Clear your car of all ice or snow, keep a safe distance between yourself and the vehicle in front, and remember that your speed should reflect the weather or road conditions. You may also want to consider getting winter tires. Not only do winter tires offer up to 50 per cent more traction than all-seasons, helping to keep you safely on the road, but they can also help you save on your car insurance. Compare quotes today to see how much you could save on your premiums with a winter tire discount.

Read More 

Top 10 Most Frequently Stolen Cars in Canada

Top 10 Most Frequently Stolen Cars in Canada
Part of what goes into determining your auto insurance rate is the likelihood of your vehicle being stolen. Some vehicles are simply more attractive to thieves. Is your vehicle a target? Chances are it is, if you drive a Ford pickup truck.

Every year the Insurance Bureau of Canada releases their list of Canada’s most stolen vehicles and this year eight out of the top 10 are built Ford tough:

  1. 2015 Lexus GX460 4-door AWD SUV
  2. 2007 Ford F-350 Super Duty 4WD Pickup
  3. 2006 Ford F-350 Super Duty 4WD Pickup
  4. 2005 Ford F-350 Super Duty 4WD Pickup
  5. 2001 Ford F-350 Super Duty 4WD Pickup
  6. 2003 Ford F-350 Super Duty 4WD Pickup
  7. 2004 Ford F-350 Super Duty 4WD Pickup
  8. 2016 Toyota 4Runner 4-door 4WD SUV
  9. 2002 Ford F-350 Super Duty 4WD Pickup
  10. 2006 Ford F-250 Super Duty 4WD Pickup

“Between 2015 and 2016, motor vehicle theft across Canada was down slightly to just over 78,000 cases,” said Dan Service, Acting National Director, Investigative Services, IBC. “After two years of increased reports of auto theft, 2016 saw a 1% decline. The biggest increases were in Yukon where stolen vehicle numbers are up 22%, Nunavut where they are up 18%, and Saskatchewan where they are up 15%.”

“We see from this list that criminals continue to favour all-wheel drive and four-wheel drive, older, high-end vehicles,” Service added.

Deter auto thieves from stealing your car

According to the IBC, cars are stolen for a number of reasons: they may be shipped overseas where they’re then sold to unsuspecting consumers who are unaware it’s a stolen vehicle; they’re scrapped for parts; or, they might be used to commit another crime. Whatever the reason, it takes less than a minute for a thief to steal your ride. As a result, the IBC advises drivers to take precautions to deter auto theft and:

  • Never, even for just a minute, leave your car running unattended.
  • Park in well-lit areas.
  • Roll up your car windows, lock the doors, and pocket and protect your keys when parking.
  • Never leave valuables or packages in view. Put them in the trunk.
  • Park your car in the garage at night.
  • Avoid leaving personal information in your glove box like your insurance and ownership documents. Take them with you when you’re not in the car.

This last bit of advice is new in recent years. Thieves can take more than your vehicle and the valuables inside when they steal your car. They could potentially attempt to steal your identity too. Identify fraud cases in Canada are up 16 per cent and identity theft is up 21 per cent, according to Statistics Canada.

If your car has been stolen, notify the police and your insurance company immediately.

This article is updated annually to reflect the the most current information released by the IBC.

Read More 

How to Save Money on Gas: 10 Fuel Efficient Driving Tips

How to Save Money on Gas: 10 Fuel Efficient Driving TipsFuel prices are not a fan favourite in Canada; it’s right up there with car insurance premiums. In fact, the last few weeks have been particularly vexing for drivers at the pumps as gas prices have increased, Canada-wide, significantly.

You know you can save on car insurance by comparing car insurance quotes, but what about saving money at the pumps too, especially given the high price of fuel? After all, you probably spend as much on gas each year as you do on car insurance, if not more.

10 fuel efficient driving tips

The following driving tips will help increase your fuel efficiency and decrease how often you have to visit the gas station and fill ‘er up.

  1. Before heading out to run errands, plan your trip. That way you can avoid having to backtrack or criss-cross the city. Also, try to avoid several short trips; instead, combine running all your errands into one outing.
  2. Avoid unnecessary idling. Studies have shown that idling for 10 minutes uses about a quarter litre of gas. If you’re not on the move, or in traffic, turn off your engine until you’re ready to go.
  3. Keep your car maintained and follow your vehicle’s maintenance schedule. According to Natural Resources Canada a poorly maintained vehicle can cost the equivalent of up to 15¢ more per litre on fuel.
  4. Keep your tires properly inflated and use the recommended motor oil for your vehicle; both will ensure your car operates at its best and most fuel efficient level.
  5. Lighten the load in your car. For every 100 additional pounds you store in your car, you are lowering the mileage you get per tank by 1-2 per cent. All that junk in your trunk is costing you gas money.
  6. Remove roof racks when not in use. A roof rack will affect your car’s aerodynamics and will decrease your car’s fuel efficiency which is a real drag to your wallet.
  7. Use your remote starter sparingly. While a remote starter is convenient, it can result in needless idling and wasted fuel if you start your car too early.
  8. Anticipate traffic. Look at the traffic as far ahead as possible in order to avoid unnecessary stopping and starting within the flow of traffic. Also, if possible, alter your commute time to avoid sitting in traffic. Leaving an hour earlier or later can make a huge difference.
  9. Avoid excessive high speeds. At 120 km/h, a vehicle uses about 20 per cent more fuel than at 100 km/h. Also, try and maintain a steady speed when driving. Frequently varying your speed can really affect your tank and lead to a higher consumption of fuel.
  10. Accelerate gently and coast to decelerate. The harder you accelerate, the more fuel you consume. The same goes for braking. In fact, jackrabbit starts and stops can increase your fuel consumption by up to 40 per cent.

It all adds up

Free up your cash and drive with fuel efficiency in mind, and if you’re looking to save even more money, compare car insurance rates too. Speak with an insurance broker.

Read More 

Pro Tips for Buying a Used Vehicle

Pro Tips for Buying a Used Vehicle

While there are plenty of perks to buying a used vehicle (starting with a more budget-friendly price tag), the process is a little different from buying a brand new vehicle — and there are some important steps you’ll want to take to avoid trouble down the road. Take these tips for a spin before you hand over your hard-earned money.

Do your homework

Once you’ve found a vehicle that seems right for you, do your homework and learn about the vehicle’s history before you consider taking it for a test drive.

  1. Research the specific model’s reputation and read satisfaction reviews from other drivers. Consider factors like fuel efficiency, overall performance, safety ratings, driver assistance systems, and hands-free technology options.
  2. Visit Transport Canada’s Motor Vehicles Safety Recalls Database and enter the vehicle’s make, model, and year to find out if there have been any recalls on the model you’re considering. If the vehicle has had any recalls, ask for proof that the required repairs have been completed.
  3. Get a history report from a reputable service (like CarProof, for example) that lists important details like previous collisions and insurance claims, theft reports, recall notices, and outstanding money owed on the vehicle. Depending on your location, you may also be able to find out if the vehicle has been involved in a flood by using the Insurance Bureau of Canada’s VIN Verify service.

Take it for a good spin

A five-minute test drive isn’t nearly long enough to properly assess whether you’ll be happy with a vehicle for years to come. Plan on a longer trip so you’ll have time to hit the highway and some pothole-lined streets to get a sense of how the vehicle responds to different conditions. Check these steps off your list before and during your test drive.

Before you hit the road:

  1. Open and close each of the doors, windows, and the trunk to make sure they work.
  2. Try buckling and unbuckling all of the seatbelts.
  3. Make sure the paint job looks consistent over the entire vehicle, and look for paint overspray on door seals and around the trunk and hood. Paint overspray or inconsistent colouring could mean the vehicle has been repaired and repainted at some point (after a collision, perhaps).
  4. Have the owner flash the brake lights, headlights, tail lights, and high-beams to make sure they’re all working.
  5. Check that all four tires are the same and show consistent wear.
  6. Look at the odometer. A vehicle’s wear-and-tear is often measured by the number of kilometres driven, so an older vehicle with fewer kilometres may last longer than a newer vehicle that was driven significantly more.

During your test drive:

  1. Adjust the seat, steering wheel, and mirrors to your preferences, and make sure you’re in a comfortable position before you get started.
  2. Drive as though the vehicle is already yours — you need to make sure it will be a good fit with your regular driving habits. Accelerate, brake, merge, pass, and park as you normally would. 
  3. Try out the heat and air conditioning to make sure both systems work.
  4. Crank up the stereo system to check for any fuzziness or blown speakers.
  5. Don’t ignore your senses. If you smell anything strange (like exhaust or gas), hear any questionable sounds (like fuzziness on the speakers or the sound of the vehicle’s parts jiggling), or feel anything odd (like vibration in the steering wheel or the vehicle veering to one side), find out the source of the problem before making the car yours.

When in doubt, don’t be afraid to take the vehicle for a second (or third) test drive before you commit to buying it.

Get a professional opinion

Once you’ve put the vehicle through its paces with a good test drive (or two) and determined it’s the right vehicle for you, drive it over to your trusted mechanic and ask for a thorough inspection. A qualified professional will know what to look for and can warn you about any red flags. Yes, you’ll likely have to pay for this service, but it could save you hundreds (if not thousands) of dollars down the road.

Ask some important questions

So, you’ve done your homework, taken your dream ride for a test drive, and had it inspected by a pro. Before you sign on the dotted line, ask these important questions:

  1. Will the manufacturer’s warranty be transferred to you when you purchase the vehicle? Depending on the age of the car, the manufacturer’s warranty (or extended warranty, if the previous owner purchased one) may still be in effect. You may be able to have the warranty transferred into your name once you take over the vehicle’s ownership.
  2. Were any modifications made after the vehicle left the manufacturer? When you buy insurance for your new-to-you vehicle, you’ll need to tell your insurer about any modifications that have been made to alter the vehicle’s appearance or performance. Some types of modifications may increase the cost of your insurance or even compromise your eligibility for coverage, so finding out about them before you buy a used car can help you avoid any issues down the road.
  3. Will the seller take less than what they’re asking? Many sellers will ask for more than they expect to receive for a vehicle, and negotiating could save you hundreds of dollars. The seller may not be willing to lower the price, but there’s no harm in asking.

Get the facts about insurance for used vehicles

Before you take the plunge, find out how buying a used car can affect your coverage and the cost of your insurance — you might be surprised to learn, for example, that insurance won’t necessarily be cheaper for a used vehicle.

Once you’ve narrowed down your top picks, contact a licensed car insurance broker to go over your options and get the best coverage to suit your needs.

Written by Stephanie Fereiro

Read More 

How to Get the Most When Shopping for a Used Car

Shopping for used cars can be extremely tricky. In today’s day and age where you can shop for cars up and down the country thanks to the internet, it can be overwhelming and hard to know where to begin. In addition to this, there are many fraudulent sellers and scams that it is important to be aware of too. So, with all of this in mind – how do you get the most when shopping for used cars?

Research                                     

The first way to get the most out of your shopping experience is to carry out research. The internet is a fantastic tool for researching used cars as there is so much information out there. You can read what type of car you should buy, how much you can expect to pay, what scams to look out for, how to inspect a used car and much more. Not only will this help you to find what you are looking for, but it will also give you the confidence to get a good deal.

Trustworthy Dealerships

Shopping at a reputable dealership is vital in getting a good deal on a great car. Private sellers usually have lower asking prices, but this can be risky and you do not get the same level of consumer protection. Instead, visit a trustworthy used car supermarket where each car for sale has undergone a series of checks carried out by a fully qualified engineer. This includes places like Imperial Cars where you can also benefit from finance options.

Checks

Although the car may already have undergone a series of checks, you may also want to carry out your own. This could include getting a mechanic to provide their assessment and carrying out a vehicle history check. The latter is very important as it can be very easy to conceal an automobile’s hidden past. You should also take the car for a test drive to ensure that everything works as it should.

Negotiating

Negotiating is a key stage in getting the most out of your shopping experience. You should have an ideal and maximum figure in mind and never go over your maximum. It is important to be firm yet friendly and always show that you have done your research. With a little patience, you should be able to get a great deal and drive away happy.

Navigating the used car market can be daunting and especially if it is your first time. The above advice should help you to get the most out of shopping for second-hand cars and find what you are looking for.

**A guest post as written by Rachel Elders.

Read More 

Having the Right Equipment in Your Car in Emergency Situations

We never think that we are going to encounter any kind of issues behind the wheel of a car, but often you hear horror stories of motorists breaking down and becoming stranded. Whilst you can usually get roadside assistance to come out and find you, sometimes you can be left alone on the side of the road for lengthy periods. Needless to say, this can be very dangerous and scary – this is especially true at night and/or if you are in the middle of nowhere.

Being Prepared

To ensure that you do not have your own horror story, it is worth purchasing a few pieces of equipment for these scenarios. These pieces of equipment could allow you to get back behind the wheel in no time at all, or at least to make it comfortably until you are rescued. Here are a few things that you should always have in the car with you:

Flashlight

A flashlight is essential as this allows you to see even when the sun goes down. Not only is this very important for safety at night, but it can also be helpful if you are working on the car and need to see clearly. You can also use a torch to flag down another car at night.

First-Aid Kit

If you get into an accident you may require first-aid. Instead of waiting for somebody to come to you, have a fully stocked first-aid kit in the boot so that you can patch yourself up until help arrives.

Food, Water & Blanket

An obvious one, food and water ensures that you will not go thirsty or hungry if you are abandoned for lengthy periods. A blanket will help you to keep warm once the sun goes down.

Portable Battery

A portable battery will allow you to charge your phone and call for help. This could be a life saver if you were to run out of charge.

Hydraulic Cylinder

You can use a hydraulic cylinder to jack a car and this could come in very handy if you need to work on the vehicle or change a tire. These are available from places like SGS.

Jumper Cables

Batteries dying is one of the major reasons that people are stranded on the side of the road. Be prepared by carrying jumper cables around with you and know how to use them.

These are the main things that every motorist should keep in their car. Being stranded on the side of the road can be incredibly dangerous and scary, but with the above, it could help you to get back on the road or stay safe and content until somebody saves you.

**A guest post as written by Rachel Elders.

Read More 

Does Owning a Pool Affect Your Home Insurance Rates?

With summertime here, you may be wishing you had a backyard swimming pool. There’s nothing like enjoying a dip in a cool pool on a hot summer’s day. Imagine drinking umbrella drinks on a lounge chair at the side of the pool and cooling off with a graceful cannonball. Why travel to paradise when you can enjoy it in your backyard?

A pool can be something for the entire family to enjoy, but it’s not without its costs. And not just the obvious ones; installing a pool will also impact your monthly home insurance premiums. 

Does installing a pool add value do your home?

Depending on where you live, owning a pool may actually boost the resale value of your home, but in many cases it won’t. Simply put, most people either love or loathe pools – there’s very little middle ground. When it comes time to put your home on the market, homes with swimming pools tend to spend more time on the market than those without. Some prospective are scared off by the added work and cost of maintaining a pool. There’s also the liability issue, which we’ll discuss later. For now, let’s discuss the more traditional costs of a swimming pool.

First, there’s the cost of installing it. Installing an in-ground pool doesn’t come cheap. You can expect to spend at least $25,000 to install a swimming pool. Then there’s the cost of using your swimming pool. If it has a heater, that could cost you a pretty penny in utilities. You’ll also need to buy chemicals, such as chlorine, to ensure the pool is safe to use. It’s a good idea to budget at least $1,000 towards operating your pool on an annual basis. You’ll also need to budget for maintenance and repairs. The pump can die or the lining can tear so it’s a good idea to budget ahead of time.

Before installing a pool, ask yourself if it's worth it. If it’s to help boost the resale value of your home, there are better, more affordable ways. If you’re hoping to enjoy it with your family, that’s when it can make sense, as long as you’re willing to do the extra work that comes along with it.

How does a swimming pool affect your home insurance rates?

A pool isn’t without its risks. If you have a swimming pool in your backyard, it’s important to ensure you have the proper home insurance coverage. If someone were to be injured using your swimming pool, you could be sued and held personally liable.

Whether you’re buying a home with a pool or you’re installing one yourself, you’ll want to tell your insurance provider right away. You’ll need a home insurance policy that specifically includes coverage for pools.

By installing a pool, you’re likely to see your home insurance rates increase. That’s because your insurance provider is taking on added risk. You’ll also want make sure your liability coverage is sufficient. This is important in case a guest gets hurt.

You can take preventative measures to minimize the risk of claims. For example, you can install a “no diving” sign and ensure that there’s a fence that’s locked at all times around the pool. It’s also best to ensure children at supervised at all times when in the pool.

If you have questions about home insurance, speak with an insurance broker!

Read More 

Join our social media community

linked in