Spring weather is finally here to stay, which means more time spent outside enjoying the nice weather. Many homeowners aren’t familiar with the phrase “attractive nuisance”, but before you bring out all of your yard toys and start prepping to open your pool you should be. Here are a few things you need to know about attractive nuisances and your homeowners insurance.
An attractive nuisance is something that is added to your property that makes it interesting enough that children would be drawn to your yard to use it. The law places a special responsibility on homeowners to take steps to protect children who may come onto your property, even if they don’t have your permission. Some examples of attractive nuisances are swimming pools and fountains, machinery (lawnmowers, old appliances etc) wells and tunnels, dangerous animals, trampolines, treehouses, zip lines, bouncy house, etc.
One of the best ways to protect yourself from liability related to attractive nuisances is to put these items behind a fence, hedges or somewhere where they are not able to be seen from the road. If people passing by cannot see that you have a pool or trampoline in your yard there is little to no chance they will be enticed to wander there. A fence with a gate that locks is ideal.
Other ways to protect your home and yourself include:
-Purchasing protective equipment when possible. This can include padding for trampolines, Safety covers for swimming pools and motion detector alarms that go in ponds and fountains to let you know if something or someone falls in.
-Discuss the items you have with your insurance agent to make sure you have the proper liability coverage. For most people, standard policy liability limits should be enough coverage. For larger or multiple risks your agent might suggest looking into an umbrella liability policy to give you added protection.