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Trampolines can be a fun time but making sure your homeowners insurance covers trampoline-related injuries and damages is essential.

 

Owning a trampoline may seem like nothing more than an invitation to good, bouncy fun. But trampolines raise your risk as a homeowner. They are so risky that some insurance companies will not cover you for damages associated with your trampoline.

"Before you install a trampoline in your yard, it is essential that you check with your homeowners insurance company to make sure you will be covered," says Loretta Worters, vice president of media relations for the Insurance Information Institute.

There is a lot at stake. If someone is hurt or killed using your trampoline, you could be found liable. This liability even extends to situations where people trespass on your property and use the trampoline without your permission.

Even if an insurer is willing to cover a trampoline, having one could impact how much you pay for homeowners insurance, says the National Association of Insurance Commissioners. Read on to learn more about how a trampoline and homeowner insurance are not necessarily a match made in heaven and what you can do to lower your risk.

KEY TAKEAWAYS
  • Before you buy a trampoline, check your homeowners insurance policy for any trampoline exclusions.
  • If your home insurance contains no trampoline exclusions, you will be covered up to your limits for trampoline injuries.
  • You may be held liable even if someone trespasses on your property and is injured using your trampoline without permission
  • Consider purchasing an umbrella policy to provide you with more liability coverage. Trampoline injuries and potential resulting lawsuits can be costly.

Does homeowners insurance cover trampolines?

Some insurers refuse to cover trampolines because they consider the risk too high.

"Every company is different as to whether they cover certain high risks such as pools and trampolines," Worters says. "It all depends on what their claims experience has been."

Coverage for trampolines is typically handled in one of three ways:

No exclusions: This means that a homeowners insurance policy doesn't place any restrictions on trampoline ownership or usage.

In this case, if someone is injured while bouncing on your trampoline and you are found legally responsible for their resulting medical bills, the liability coverage in your homeowners policy may help cover the costs, Worters says.

Trampoline exclusion: Your policy may state that trampolines are excluded from your coverage. In that case, your policy would not reimburse you for trampoline-related claims.

Coverage with safety precautions: In this case, the homeowners insurance policy might provide coverage for a trampoline, but only if you have certain safety precautions in place. For example, the trampoline may need to be in a closed and locked area, with access to the area restricted, Worters says.

If you have yet to buy a trampoline but are considering doing so, call your insurer first to find out if it covers trampolines. If it does not, it is possible that if you buy a trampoline, your policy will not be renewed at the end of its term, Worters says.

Are trampolines an attractive nuisance?

Specific items on your property – including pools, treehouses and trampolines – may be considered an "attractive nuisance." Cornell Law School defines an "attractive nuisance" as a "dangerous condition on a landowner's property that may attract children onto the land and may involve risk or harm to their safety."

Children -- even those who trespass -- may not fully understand the risk an "attractive nuisance" poses. The onus is on the homeowner to either remove the danger or make it inaccessible to children.

Will you be held liable if a child is hurt or killed on your trampoline? It is possible, especially if your negligence as a homeowner played a role in the accident, Nolo.com notes. Your risk of liability is exceptionally high if you failed to:

  • Properly maintain the trampoline
  • Properly supervise its use
  • Ensure it is safe to use

When you have an attractive nuisance on your property, it often makes sense to purchase additional liability coverage, says the Insurance Information Institute. For example, instead of carrying a minimum amount of $100,000, it might make sense to carry $500,000 -- or even more.

What insurance companies cover trampolines?

Some insurance companies will cover trampolines, while many others will not. Worters says the willingness to cover trampolines varies from insurer to insurer and even from state to state.

Worters suggests shopping around for an insurer that will cover the trampoline. In many cases, you will be able to find at least one insurer that will offer such coverage.

"If you can't get the coverage, then I would not purchase the trampoline," Worters says. "It's not worth the risk."

What to do if trampolines are excluded from your homeowners insurance policy

If you are looking for trampoline insurance coverage and your homeowners insurance will not cover a trampoline, it's probably best to shop for a new insurance company. As Worters says, the risk of not insuring your trampoline is extremely high.

Bottom line: Shop until you find an insurer willing to cover your trampoline. If you can't find one, it probably is best to get rid of your trampoline or to decide not to buy one in the first place.

How much does trampoline insurance cost?

Does having a trampoline affect homeowners insurance costs? Absolutely.   

To be clear, there is no such thing as "trampoline insurance." The coverage that protects you in the aftermath of a trampoline accident can be found in your homeowners insurance policy. You cannot purchase a separate "trampoline insurance" policy.

However, as noted above, the National Association of Insurance Commissioners emphasizes that having a trampoline can indeed impact your overall insurance costs. Your premiums very well may be higher if you have a trampoline on your property.

"Even if the company that insures your home will allow a trampoline to be installed in your back yard, the additional liability insurance that you might have to take on to accommodate the risk can be very expensive," Worters says.

Overall, homeowners insurance costs average $2,305 per year nationwide for policy limits of $300,000 for liability and dwelling protection, according to Insurance.com research. However, the risk of having a trampoline may bump those rates higher. And you might pay even more if you increase your liability coverage, so you have extra protection to cover the risk of having a trampoline.

Worters says it is difficult to determine exactly how much extra it will cost to insure a home with a trampoline, adding that the coverage is "part of a homeowners policy, so it isn't broken out."

How much does it cost to add an umbrella policy?

The danger that a trampoline can pose to those who use it raises your risk as a homeowner. If someone is hurt or killed while using the trampoline, you could be liable for damages.

For this reason, it is essential to make sure you carry enough liability coverage to fully protect you if you are sued. Although you can start by raising the liability limits on your homeowners insurance, you might want even more coverage. If that is the case, consider purchasing an umbrella policy.

An umbrella policy will cover damages and legal defense costs up to the umbrella policy's limit, typically between $1 million and $5 million.

Fortunately, this coverage is relatively affordable. According to the Insurance Information Institute, you can expect a $1 million policy to cost you between $150 and $300 per year.

Frequently asked questions about trampolines and homeowners insurance

Does renters insurance cover trampolines?

As a general rule, the coverages of renters insurance closely mimic those of traditional homeowners insurance. And that is true of trampoline coverage as well.

In short, if an insurance company is willing to cover trampolines for homeowners, it likely will do so for renters as well. But if the insurer will not extend such coverage to homeowners, you probably will be out of luck as a renter.

Do umbrella policies cover trampolines?

If you purchase an umbrella policy, it's important to make sure your trampoline will be covered as part of the insurance. Also, know that if your homeowners insurance company refuses to cover the trampoline, you cannot simply buy umbrella insurance to get separate trampoline coverage.

"You have to have the underlying coverage first, and then the umbrella is another layer of protection," Worters says.

How much does a trampoline raise your insurance?

How much does trampoline insurance cost? As Worters says, it is impossible to know how much having a trampoline will raise your insurance rates since the cost is not broken out. But it is very likely to make your insurance more expensive.

"It is likely to be more," Worters says. "How much more depends on so many factors."

What happens if someone gets hurt on my trampoline?

If someone is hurt on your trampoline, you could be found legally liable for the damages. That could be very expensive, reaching into the hundreds of thousands of dollars – or even $1 million or more.