Oklahoma Insurance Professionals LLC Blog
Backyard structures are additional structures or detached buildings located on a property's grounds. These structures are separate from the main dwelling, and they serve a variety of purposes.
Backyard structures can include detached garages, sheds, workshops, pool houses, gazebos, and even outdoor kitchens.
Homeowners love the additional space for storage, recreation, relaxation, and entertaining (especially during OU football games).
While these structures enhance a property's functionality and aesthetics, it's important for you as the homeowner to ensure you have proper insurance coverage to protect these valuable assets (and those who enjoy them).
Why is it Important to Insure Backyard Structures?
Backyard structures create additional opportunities for potential liabilities, damages, and thefts that can occur.
One of the main reasons for insuring backyard structures has to do with liability coverage.
Accidents or injuries that occur in and around these structures can result in costly legal expenses and medical bills. Without the proper insurance coverage, homeowners may be held personally responsible for these expenses (and that can get very expensive).
In addition to liabilities, damages related to backyard structures can also prove significant. Natural disasters such as storms, floods, or fires can cause severe damage to detached garages or outdoor structures. Theft and vandalism also present risks that homeowners should protect against, making sure coverage exists for repair or replacement.
Types of Backyard Structures
When it comes to backyard structures, there are many options available to homeowners. Whether it's a detached garage, outdoor shed, or even a swimming pool, these structures can enhance the functionality and aesthetics of your outdoor space. However, it's important to consider the insurance implications of these structures.
Each type of backyard structure comes with its own set of risks and insurance considerations. In this article, we will explore the different types of backyard structures and the importance of insuring them.
Detached garages are structures providing a convenient space for parking vehicles, storing tools and equipment, and even functioning as a workshop or additional living space.
Standard homeowners insurance policies typically provide coverage for detached garages. This coverage usually falls under the "other structures" section of the policy, which includes outdoor structures such as sheds, fences, and detached garages.
The coverage limits for detached structures are typically a percentage (often 10%) of the dwelling coverage. For example, if the dwelling coverage is $300,000, the coverage for detached structures would be up to $30,000.
However, standard homeowners insurance policies may not fully cover expensive or valuable items stored in detached garages.
Items such as expensive landscaping equipment, lawn mowers, or big-ticket items like motorcycles or boats may require additional coverage.
Homeowners can consider adding an endorsement or rider to their policy to provide additional coverage for these items.
Swimming pools can be a great source of fun and relaxation for homeowners, but they also present unique insurance considerations. Insuring swimming pools is crucial to protect against potential liability and property damage.
Liability coverage is especially important when it comes to swimming pools. Accidents can happen, and homeowners can be held responsible for injuries or accidents that occur on their property. Having liability coverage as part of your homeowners insurance policy can help protect you financially if someone is injured in your swimming pool.
To reduce liability exposure, it is essential to implement safety measures. Fences or barriers around the pool area can help prevent unauthorized access and reduce the risk of accidents. Installing self-closing and self-latching gates can further enhance pool safety.
Additionally, having safety equipment such as life vests, pool alarms, and rescue equipment readily available can help mitigate potential risks.
Coverage types for swimming pools typically include both liability protection and property damage coverage. Liability protection covers bodily injury and property damage caused by accidents or incidents related to the swimming pool.
Property damage coverage can provide financial protection for the pool itself and any other structures or equipment associated with the pool, such as pumps or filtration systems.
When it comes to insuring swimming pools, it is always a good idea to consult with your insurance agent to understand the specific coverage options available and ensure adequate protection for your unique situation.
By properly insuring swimming pools and implementing safety measures, homeowners can enjoy their pool while having peace of mind knowing they have protection.
Outdoor structures such as gazebos, pergolas, and sheds are commonly found in backyards. These structures serve various purposes and enhance the functionality and aesthetic appeal of outdoor spaces.
Gazebos provide a covered area for relaxation, entertaining guests, or outdoor dining. Pergolas offer shade and support for climbing plants, creating a picturesque outdoor space. Sheds provide storage for tools, equipment, and other items.
When it comes to homeowners insurance policies, the coverage for these outdoor structures can vary.
It's important to review your policy and check the coverage amount for these structures. If the value of your outdoor structures exceeds the coverage limits, it may be wise to consider additional coverage or endorsements to protect them adequately. This can be accomplished by adding extra coverage specifically for these structures to your policy.
Dangers like theft, vandalism, or damage caused by natural disasters can pose risks to outdoor structures. To protect them, homeowners can consider additional coverage options or endorsements that specifically address these risks. Ensuring that these structures are well-maintained, secured with sturdy locks, and regularly inspected for any potential hazards can also help mitigate risks.
In addition to gazebos, pergolas, and other detached structures, there are several types of additional structures that can be commonly found in backyards, such as sheds and fences. Sheds provide valuable storage space for tools, equipment, and seasonal items, while fences offer privacy and security to the property.
When it comes to coverage, homeowners insurance policies typically include coverage for these additional structures. However, the coverage may vary and it's important to review the policy carefully. Generally, the coverage for sheds and fences is similar to that of the main dwelling. They are typically covered for the same perils, including fire, vandalism, and wind damage.
Taking steps to properly maintain and secure these structures can help mitigate risks and ensure their coverage under the homeowners insurance policy. Just like "Outdoor" structures, regular inspections, maintenance, and the use of sturdy locks can provide an extra layer of protection for sheds and fences.
How Does Oklahoma Insurance Pros Help?
At Oklahoma Insurance Pros, we are dedicated to helping the residents of Oklahoma City and the surrounding area with all their insurance needs. As an independent insurance agency, we have the flexibility to shop around and find the best coverage and rates from multiple insurance providers.
One area that we specialize in is homeowners insurance. We understand that your home is your biggest investment and protecting it is crucial. We can help you find the right homeowners insurance policy that fits your needs and budget. Whether you have a detached garage, outdoor structures, or expensive landscaping, we can guide you through the different coverage types and ensure that you have the proper protection in place.
Our team of experienced insurance agents will take the time to understand your unique situation and find the best coverage options for you. We can provide additional coverage for detached structures, personal property, and liability coverage to give you peace of mind. We will also explain the coverage limits and help you understand the different policy types, such as replacement cost coverage and actual cash value coverage.
At Oklahoma Insurance Pros, we believe in providing personalized service and educating our clients about their insurance options.
Contact us today to speak with one of our knowledgeable agents and discover how we can help you protect your home and property.