Question: I am putting my home up for rent.  We have a pool.  My prospective tenants have teenage children.  I am worried about liability.  Does renter’s insurance protect against liability?

Answer: My first experience with renter’s insurance came after my engagement.  We got a renter’s policy sufficient to replace the shiny new diamond ring if it was stolen or damaged.   Most folks consider renter’s insurance only for personal property protection.

However, a renters’ policy can cover legal liability in case of personal injury while a tenant or guest is on the premises.  Much like homeowner’s insurance, actions of the policyholder occurring away from the premises may be covered.  Tenant actions causing damage to the property may also be covered, i.e: the nefarious waterbed leak.

In your case, mixing teenagers with a pool, can be dangerous.  Discuss this with your prospective tenant and introduce them to your insurance agent.  Address your concerns by incorporating lease provisions requiring an appropriate renter’s policy.

Of course, as a landlord, be sure to have your own liability insurance protection.  Also, consider creating a corporation or LLC to handle such matters.  This will separate your personal assets from your business liability.

Attorney James Haroutunian practices real estate, estate planning and business law in Billerica at 790 Boston Rd and can be reached with questions at 978-671-0711,, or via email:   

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