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Do Students Need Renters Insurance When They Go to College?

By December 4, 2019 December 18th, 2019 Insurance

Many students move out of their parent’s homes when they go to college, and this creates a multifaceted insurance quandary. While insurance is widely available for college students, how they should procure coverage depends on a couple of different factors. Here’s how to determine whether college students need to purchase renters insurance when they leave for school.

Step 1: Determine Where a Student Will Live

Before you can figure out whether a college student will need renters insurance while they’re at school, you must first determine where they’ll live while classes are in session. A person’s place of residence always impacts what type of homeowners or renters insurance they need, and this is especially true with college students.

College students who live on campus in school-run dormitories normally can continue to be on their parent’s homeowners’ insurance policy. In this situation, a student will likely have liability coverage through their parent’s policy. Additionally, the student’s belongings might be covered while the items are in a dorm room (see next section).

When college students move off of campus, they often no longer are covered by their parent’s homeowners’ policy. Students who move into off-campus apartments, fraternity houses, and sorority houses usually don’t get either liability or personal property coverage through their parent’s policy. Therefore, they typically need to purchase renters insurance.

If the student you’re insuring is on campus, continue through the following steps to see whether their parent’s homeowners’ policy is sufficient or if they need to purchase their own protection. If the student plans to lease a place off-campus, you can skip the following steps because they need renters insurance regardless of their parent’s policy.

Step 2: Check the Type of Personal Property Coverage

Should your students live on campus, next focus on the type of personal property protection that their parent’s policy offers? Personal property protection insures people’s possessions and belongings, and you want to see whether the parent’s policy offers worldwide coverage within its personal property protection.

Worldwide coverage extends protection throughout the world — including in dormitories. Thus, most of your student’s belongings are well protected if this coverage is part of their parent’s homeowners policy.

If a parent’s policy doesn’t include worldwide coverage, protection for belongings not kept at the parent’s house will be limited. In this situation, a student likely does need renters insurance to adequately protect their things. Even though they may have liability protection through a parent’s homeowner’s policy, the property protection needs justify getting renters insurance.

Step 3: Look at the Value of Electronics

If a student is living on campus and worldwide coverage is available through a parent’s policy, there’s one final item to check. While the parent’s policy will probably cover most of a student’s belongings, you should specifically look at what coverage is provided for electronics and what electronics are being taken to school.

Many homeowner’s insurance policies limit coverage for certain high-value items, and electronics are often on the list of restricted protections. Make sure that the value of the electronics that your student takes to school is lower than the electronics limit within their parent’s homeowners’ policy.

If the value of the electronics is less than the electronics limit in the homeowner’s policy, renters insurance is unnecessary. Your student has all the protections they need for both themselves and their stuff while they’re at school.

If the value of the electronics is more than the electronics limit, your student should purchase renters insurance. They can find a renters policy that will sufficiently insure their electronics, and this protection is important enough to purchase a policy.

If you know a college student who needs renters insurance, contact Callis Insurance.