As August comes to a close, students across the nation are headed back to college. As they pack up valuables like smartphones, TVs, jewelry, and laptops, it’s important to consider whether renter’s insurance may be beneficial. Renter’s insurance provides liability protection in the event someone gets hurt while at the student’s residence and covers a student’s “stuff” while away at school and wherever they are (in the residence, at class, or anywhere else).
If living off campus, renter’s insurance is generally recommended for liability purposes – particularly if the student may host parties or serve alcohol. Having coverage for loss of or damage to personal property is a bonus as well, but be aware that renter’s insurance will only cover the belongings of the policyholder. Roommates and guests will need their own policies to protect their belongings.
Whether renter’s insurance is a good idea is a trickier question for students living on campus. A dorm or apartment owned by a university is generally considered temporary housing. Because a student living on campus is likely to still be a legal resident back at home, they are most often protected by the insurance on their primary residence and may not need a renter’s policy. However, be sure to check the deductible on that primary residence policy. Renter’s insurance (and its less expensive cousin, dorm insurance) offers lower deductibles which can be a big help for college students. If the primary residence has a $1000 deductible and a $500 laptop is stolen, the primary policy won’t be of much help. The deductible on the renter’s policy, however, will be smaller and, therefore, more likely to help cover college claims.
When purchasing renter’s insurance, it is important to assure that the maximum coverage provided is sufficient to cover the value of the personal property in the student’s possession while away. The premiums on renter’s policies are generally low enough to make these policies a valuable addition to the college experience.
Wright Beamer wishes our collegebound clients and students a fantastic year at home and abroad!