The fact is, owning a rental property that has a pool makes renting not only fun for families, but is the perfect amenity when you want to make sure your property doesn’t sit idle on the rental market for long periods of time. Sure, when you have a property with a swimming pool you have a liability to ensure the pool is functional and that you have the proper insurance as required by state laws, but a pool is a great way to be able to make more on rental fees and entice people to rent from you.
Something you need to keep in mind if you own a rental property with a swimming pool is you must abide by stringent state laws and you must keep the pool maintained for your tenants. This can be a large expense, especially if a pump needs replaced or you need to repair concrete, ladders or other pool parts. A rental property manager can help alleviate some of the stress of maintaining a pool, but you will need to stay informed and be sure to stay on top of any work that must be handled quickly.
If your rental property has multiple tenants who will use the swimming pool, be sure to set some pool rules and have them sign a waiver stating they will not hold you, the property owner, responsible for accidents should they occur.
Common Rules to Post at A Swimming Pool Include:
- No lifeguard on duty; Swim at your own risk. (Unless you plan to have a lifeguard)
- Swimming Hours
- No pets in pool area
- No glass in pool area
- No alcoholic beverages in pool area
- Children must be supervised by parent or guardian at all times
- No diving or horseplay
- No entry once gates are locked at night
You can also require that tenants only are allowed in the pool and may not bring guests who do not reside on the property or require them to sign guests in at your leasing office if you have one on the property. While you want to ensure your tenants will enjoy having a swimming pool for use on the property, you must also make sure the pool is safe and that you won’t need to worry about any potential dangers lurking in the pool area.
Maintenance & Repairs
Some landlords try to write addendums requiring tenants to maintain swimming pools, and for private homes, this may work just fine if tenants agree to sign and keep the pool maintained as required for safety and per the law. In most cases however, pool safety and maintenance are often going to fall back to the property owner, especially if a pool has repair work that needs to be handled to keep the swimming pool safe for tenants and guests.
Simple things such as keeping frogs out of your pool or keeping pool chemicals on hand for the pool can easily be handled with regular maintenance, but if you let maintenance go, you could find that you end up with crumbling cement or other major repair work that could have been prevented with a little regular maintenance.
As a property owner, you should want to keep the swimming pool maintenance as proper maintenance will help prevent costly repairs in the future. Did you know that even if you have an addendum requiring tenants to maintain a pool, the law can still hold you liable if you are aware of a danger with the pool and fail to have it repaired? It is up to the owner to make sure the pool and the pool area are safe for tenants and their guests. It also needs to be safe for people who do not live on the property by making sure a fence is in place and the gate locks to prevent outsiders from entering the pool area.
Improper pool maintenance can bring the overall property value down, so it is important to keep all maintenance up and make sure the pool is in great shape.
Property owners should carry liability insurance on their property and this is very true is a pool is installed. Insurance requirements usually include having a fence around the pool with a lock that is too high for a small child to reach. Depending on the insurance company, other requirements may be involved for safety.
Points to Ponder
There are some things to consider when investing in a property with a pool and these considerations include:
- Fencing must meet proper insurance and state guidelines
- Pool filtration must be in working order and in compliance with any state or local laws regarding filtration
- Depending on location, swimming pool certification may be required
- Gates must have a lock or latch that is childproof and must swing outwards away from the pool area
- A pool addendum can require tenants to maintain a pool, but it still falls back to the property owner to inspect and ensure the pool is in good shape
Besides all the legal requirements of having a swimming pool, the bottom line is that a pool on your rental property can help boost rentals, earn you more money by allowing you to charge a little more for rent and can make the property more enjoyable for tenants. Note that simply having a pool will most likely not increase your property value, but as an amenity for tenants, they are a great way to entice renters to the property.
Swimming pools are, simply put, a fun way to spend hot summer days, weekends and time off work and even evenings after a long day of work and they make a great addition to any rental property.