As summer comes to a close and the new school year approaches, you and your family are remembering vacations and camp and starting to think about school supplies, classes, sports teams and the busy schedules that come with the academic year. Insurance may not be on your mind, however, the start of the school year is the perfect time to review your policies and make necessary changes. From health insurance, to car and homeowners insurance, your needs may have changed as your children head off to school or into a new life of their own. A new school, teen driver, or even a move to a college dorm could mean new insurance needs for your family. This is a good time to take a few minutes to go over your coverages and what you will need for the upcoming year.
Is your teenager getting a driver’s license this year? Teens are the most expensive drivers to insure, but there are things you can do and ways to reduce the insurance cost for a teen driver.
The average college student leaves home with almost $10,000 in belongings, including clothing, electronics, bicycles, musical instruments and décor, as well as computer and gaming equipment. Text books and other school supplies they purchase after arriving on campus only adds to the cost of replacing lost or damaged items. While these items were covered under your homeowners policy while they were living with you at home, it’s possible, under certain circumstances, that they may not be covered at school.
Generally, a homeowners insurance policy will cover your student’s possessions while they are away at school, if you still consider them a member of the household and they reside on campus. Limited coverage may apply to high-priced items, such as electronics and bicycles. You may need to buy additional coverage to cover these items in the event of loss or damage. It is best to make any needed changes to your policy before your student’s move, since property may be lost or damaged during the transition.
Make sure you take inventory before they leave. Make a list of all possessions with serial numbers, when possible, as well as the value of the item. Keep any available receipts with your inventory. Though it may seem daunting, an inventory and supporting documentation can ease the claim process if your student’s items are stolen or damaged.
If your student plans to live off-campus in an apartment or other rental situation, he or she will probably not be covered by your homeowners insurance and would need to acquire their own renters insurance policy. In addition to covering personal property, it also covers your child for liability, just like yours does on your homeowners policy.