This is the time of year when we often receive calls and inquiries from clients with the question: “Are my college student’s belongings covered when they are away at school?”
Do you have a son or daughter getting ready to head off to college? If so, chances are they are bringing some expensive gizmos and gadgets with them. From electronics to sporting equipment, the value of the things that college students have certainly adds up quickly. While your son or daughter may or may not be thinking of it, you might be wondering if this “stuff”, a lot of which you may have actually purchased, is covered if something happens to it.
Your homeowners insurance may provide some coverage for your son or daughter’s belongings if they live in a dorm on campus, or even if they choose to live in some type of off-campus housing. However, whether or not you have coverage and how much coverage there is will depend on your insurance company and which policy form you have purchased. Factors that are often considered in determining coverage for students away at college is whether or not they still use your residence as their “primary residence” (i.e. when they return home for breaks, etc.), whether or not your child is a full-time student (as defined by the school), and the age of your child (many policies provide some coverage for students under age 24). In addition, if your policy does provide some coverage, it is often limited to a certain percentage (often 10%) of the amount of personal property coverage that is provided by your homeowners policy. For example, if you have $100,000 of personal property coverage, coverage for your child’s belongings in his/her dorm may be limited to $10,000. There are also coverage limitations in homeowners policies that may apply. For example, theft of money or jewelry is subject to specific limits. Lastly, all policies have deductibles, so even if coverage applies, you are responsible for the out-of-pocket expense of your deductible amount before the insurance company pays anything. For example, if your son’s $1,200 laptop is stolen and you have a $1,000 deductible, your policy would pay $200.
To find out for sure exactly what type of coverage and how much coverage you have, you should contact your insurance agent. Depending on your home policy as well as your son or daughter’s unique needs, we may advise you that your best bet is to consider purchasing a renter’s policy for him or her. Renter’s policies are relatively affordable (annual premiums can be as low as $150-$200 in New England) and may provide more adequate protection for your college student.
So whether you are excited to see your child head off to school, or whether you are dreading saying goodbye to him or her, school is right around the corner! Protect your investment! Call Loiselle Insurance Agency today at (401) 723-8510 to make sure you have the proper coverage for your college student.