Buying a homeowner’s insurance policy gives an owner of residential real estate protection against damages and liability. People often focus their attention on the coverage that applies after weather incidents or crime to protect them from property damages. They may worry less about their liability if a visitor gets hurt on the property. However, one of the most important protections provided by homeowners insurance is liability coverage.
Thanks to insurance coverage, people do not always have to absorb the costs generated by someone else falling or getting bitten by a dog on their property because their homeowner’s insurance will help to cover those expenses. Yet, property owners will likely also want to actively protect themselves against claims, possibly by embracing one or more of the following approaches.
Investing in a good fence
The more accessible someone’s property is, the greater the risk of people coming onto the property without permission. Particularly when there are significant hazards at the property, such as a pool, the possibility of someone getting hurt goes down if there is a fence around most or all of the outdoor spaces.
Proactive property maintenance
Small issues, like a rotting board on a front porch or a loose handrail in a stairwell, can significantly increase the likelihood of visitors getting hurt. Particularly when someone knows they will have visitors, such as when they have a party planned, taking steps to address known issues with the property will be of the utmost importance.
Properly train and contain animals
Any animals living at a property can be a source of liability, but some are more likely to injure people than others. Dogs, particularly dogs trained for home defense, could attack and injure people. The parties affected might then pursue a personal injury lawsuit against the property owner for the actions of their aggressive pet. Those who keep their animals contained and invest in proper training can reduce the likelihood that someone will get hurt because of their animal’s actions.
Homeowners who have been assertive about reducing their risk may be in a better position to respond to a homeowner’s insurance claim or a lawsuit brought by an injured visitor. Identifying risk factors at someone’s home can be a valuable first step toward limiting the risks associated with a significant claim.