It is summertime and many recent high school graduates are getting ready to head off to college. You’re likely shopping and buying lots of cute things to decorate their dorm room. Additionally, your student is probably updating his/her electronics with a new laptop computer, printer, flat-screen television, and various technical gadgets.

With all of these valuables heading to school with them, how can you protect their belongings? Will my homeowner’s policy cover my college student? Simply put, if your student lives on campus, your homeowner’s policy will cover them. However, if they are off-campus in an apartment, most policies will exclude them.

Insurance Risks on College Campuses

Many college students share a room with other co-eds. Living with other kids can increase the potential risk of theft and vandalism to their personal property. Other perils such as damage to their belongings because of an earthquake, hurricane or fire should be covered by the school.
When evaluating insurance for your college student, you’ll also want to think about liability protection. You and your student can be sued for deliberate or in deliberate actions. This includes damaging property on campus or someone being harmed in their dorm room because of negligence.

Renter’s Insurance, Dorm Insurance or Your Homeowner’s Policy

Study your homeowner’s policy or talk with your broker to find out how much coverage you’ll have for your student’s belongings while they are away. Most policies will ensure your student’s belongings for up to 10% of your personal property coverage. Liability coverage may not be affected.
If you don’t believe your student will have adequate personal property coverage, you might want to consider buying them dorm insurance. Although some insurance companies have special dorm insurance policies, many do not. In this case, the insurance company will likely recommend a renter’s policy in its place. Renter’s and dorm insurance policies are very affordable and deductibles are also very low making these policies very attractive.

As soon as your student has decided where they will reside, it’s time to talk to your broker about the best insurance strategy for your family.