Kristin, who has Denver, CO renters insurance, wants to know
If my apartment has a pool do I have to tell my renters insurance? As I look over the application for renters insurance, they ask a question about a pool. Should I disclose even though it’s fenced and locked at night?
Thanks for the great question, Kristin! This one can get a little more in depth depending on the carrier you’re working with, but we’ll take a high level look at it.
Kristin, it might depend on how the application is worded. But when in doubt, disclose, disclose, disclose. You may or may not absolutely, positively have to, but it does no harm to disclose and prove that it’s fenced and locked. Pictures are often sufficient proof. Here’s the concern, though:
Let’s say you didn’t disclose. Since neither the pool, nor the fence or lock are your responsibility, a liability claim against you personally is probably not likely. However, there’s another more insidious risk here that you need to be aware of. It’s important to know the risks in order to avoid being the person risking their coverage by non-disclosure. If you do this you could wind up with absolutely nothing. Do you know why?
Your insurance carrier can and may cancel your policy and refund all premiums if any misrepresentation of fact, or misstatement of the risk being insured on your application is discovered.
Let’s review that further: Any material misrepresentation, intentional or otherwise, on your application can void the policy and the only payment made to you would be premiums paid to date. The policy would for your purposes, never have been in force in the first place. For example, if you suffered a loss due to a fire and the adjuster came out to review the damages and saw the pool that you didn’t disclose, the company could in theory walk away from your claim and give you back the small amount of money you paid for the policy. No coverage would ever have been in force in that instance.
If My Apartment Has A Pool Do I Have To Tell My Renters Insurance?
Yes. Not because it has one ounce of bearing on the amount of risk they’re taking on, assuming it’s properly fenced, locked, and maintained by the apartment community, or an indoor pool with controlled access. The liability for the pool itself would not be your problem, but if were asked and did not disclose the existence of the pool then your policy, and that of your roommates, would be voidable. Therefore, you risk having no coverage at all simply because it was too much hassle to explain that the pool exists, but is not your responsibility. Which one do you think is the better option?
Effective Coverage For Renters, is familiar with the properties we work with and knows how important it is to understand each individual renter and their specific renters insurance needs, disclosure needs, and risk profile. Call Effective Coverage at (800)892-4308 for a free review of your renters insurance policy or a quote on a new one that could save you money!