Does my college student need a renter’s insurance policy?

For many young adults, college is a fun, but stressful, part of their development. It is a time filled with new experiences, friends, living spaces, and of course- knowledge! For many parents, or primary caregivers, the question of, “What can I do to help my child during this life phase?” exists. As an insurance agency, we often are asked, “Does my college student need renter’s insurance?” If you don’t want to read past this sentence, the short answer is: Yes. There are three basic types of protection covered by renter’s insurance: personal liability, personal property, and additional living expenses.

My College Student Lives In a Dormitory:

            If your child lives in a college dormitory, you should automatically have some coverage that extends from your homeowner’s policy. Typically, a percentage of your personal property coverage for your homeowner’s policy extends to your student’s belongings in the dorm. For example, if you have $100,000 of personal property coverage on your homeowner’s policy, your college student will have $10,000, or approximately 10%, of personal property coverage. 

My College Student Lives Off Campus:

            If your child lives off campus, your personal property coverage does not extend to their personal property. This means you should purchase a renter’s insurance policy. Not only does this policy cover personal property, it also provides personal liability coverage. This is important because most landlords do not insure a tenant’s personal belongings. Personal liability coverage means that your college student would be covered for anything they (you) are legally responsible for, or damage they are responsible for on other people’s property. Since many college students are sub-leasing living spaces from a tenant, personal liability coverage is very important. For example, if they turned on the bath tub water and forgot about it, then it overflowed and caused damage to the floor and the apartment below—personal liability coverage would cover the cost of damage repairs. Along with that, if your college student had to move out while they were repairing the damage, they would be covered for those additional living expenses as well.

Why Is Renter’s Insurance Necessary?

            Renter’s insurance is fairly inexpensive, protects their living space as well as personal belongings such as computers, furniture, clothing, textbooks, etc. When you add up the cost of replacing any of those personal items, or paying for damage repairs out of pocket—purchasing an insurance policy is much cheaper in comparison. If you are interested in purchasing a renter’s insurance policy, the first step you should take is taking inventory to decide what kind of policy you need. Have your child create a spreadsheet that lists all their belongings, take videos or pictures, and then contact Chris or Cindy at Bryton Insurance.