fire pit

Homeowners Insurance and Your Fire Pit

Thinking about installing or buying a fire pit or heat lamp for your backyard this season? From roasting marshmallows with the family to cozy nights wrapped up in blankets, they are a great way to help capitalize on the use of your outdoor space without sacrificing comfort. Before you add a fire pit to your backyard set up, make sure to consider how it can affect safety and your insurance! 

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The Type Of Pits

It’s important to consider your fire pit set up. Whether you use a portable fire pit or install a more permanent one can affect the type of coverage you’ll need. For instance, a portable pit may be considered to be a part of your personal property coverage. Whereas a permanent one could be considered an unattached “structure”. If you are installing a permanent fire pit, make sure to check with your local laws on what is permissible.

Telling Your Insurance Agent

Is having a fire pit something I need to tell my insurance agent? While you may not initially think to tell your insurer about your fire pit plans, you should discuss the impacts.

For unattached structures, they are usually only protected for a certain percentage of the insurance you have on your home. This could affect the coverage limit on your fire pit. Talk to your agent about the coverage that you currently have and how much coverage you may need.

Not only is it good to discuss installing a fire pit with your agent to explore coverage limits, but there could also be times where it is necessary to disclose it. In areas prone to wildfires, your insurance agent may need extra notice in order for you to extend your coverage.

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Liability Protection Coverage

Not only should you think about how a fire pit can affect your home, but you should also think about how it can affect others. A spark from your fire could end up setting your neighbor’s property on fire. Perhaps there are kids around and one of them gets burned by the fire. You could be facing medical charges or property damage suits. In these instances, it’s important to have liability protection.

Liability protection can help cover injuries or property damage that result from your fire. Make sure to discuss these scenarios with your agent to see how you can best protect you, your family, and others.

Additional Fire Safety Tips

It’s always good to practice fire safety and exercise common sense whenever there’s fire involved. This includes:

  • Placing your pit at least 10 feet away from your home and other dwellings
  • Being mindful of the weather and high winds
  • Carefully supervising children and pets
  • Having a fire extinguisher or hose nearby
  • Making sure the fire is fully extinguished before heading inside

Before you get that fire pit up and running, talk to an Encharter agent. We are here to help you keep your family safe! We’ll help you address your questions and concerns around your homeowners’ insurance.

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