A message from ‘michael‘
Hello again – today I’m here to talk to you about putting the right insurance in place for your child before they head off to college. Please listen to my short message and then continue reading to see our important insurance checklist. [you can click here to watch the video]
The new school year is fast approaching, and your son or daughter is off to college! Whether they are just beginning their college career or returning to campus, there is a lot to think about. As parents, we want to make sure they are safe and secure in their new home away from home. Insurance is not usually an item found on most colleges’ suggested packing list, but it should be. This is often the first time in their lives that most college students are living independently. We get a lot of questions from parents who want to know what they can do to best protect their college student and his/her valuables. To make life easier, here is a quick list of the most important types of insurance your child might need while they are away at college:
THE INSURANCE COVERAGES EVERY COLLEGE STUDENT NEEDS
The value of a college student’s property and possessions add up quickly. It is amazing how much stuff can fit in a dorm room or off-campus apartment! Students go to college with computers, laptops, tablets, jewelry, clothing, sunglasses, gaming consoles, furniture, and more. Students who live in campus housing, like a dorm, are covered (up to certain levels) under their parents’ homeowners insurance policy. However, if your child is renting an off-campus apartment or house, they will need their own renters insurance policy to cover their personal belongings. A renters policy covers their belongings even when they aren’t in the house or apartment. It also provides personal liability protection, in case of an accidental injury to someone or damage to someone else’s property.
Is your child heading to school without a car? You might be eligible for a student away at school car insurance discount if your child is not taking a car and will be 100 miles or more away from home. Even if they are not taking their car with them, don’t be tempted to take your child off your policy. You want to keep coverage in place for when they are home and drive their vehicle. In addition, your child may be eligible for a good student discount if they maintain at least a B average, so remind your child that grades matter!
PERSONAL ARTICLES INSURANCE
Most electronics items will be covered under your family’s homeowners insurance policy for students living in dorms. However, the coverage will be limited. If you feel your child needs additional coverage, specific items can be added through an endorsement. By purchasing specific protection for their belongings, you can insure them against theft, damage, or loss.
Most college-aged students are covered by their parent’s health insurance policy, assuming they are 26 or younger. Most schools offer a school-provided health insurance plan. Look into the school’s health plan to see what is covered, what the coverage limits are, and what the deductible is. Some colleges require you to provide proof of coverage if you want to “opt-out” of their insurance plan. If your child is going to an out-of-state college, check with your insurance carrier to find out what doctors and providers are in-network in that area.
Most college students and their parents are not thinking about life insurance. But if they have student loans, you might want to reconsider. Most private student loan companies will not dismiss their remaining debt balance if the student were to unexpectedly pass away. That means you would be financially responsible for repaying their debt. For many parents, it is a good idea to have enough life insurance for yourself to cover all your kids’ tuition until the youngest child has graduated.
IDENTITY THEFT INSURANCE
College students are very susceptible to identity theft-related crimes. There are a few reasons for this: (1) They share personal data like phone numbers, addresses, and their location through social media. (2) They may not use the strongest passwords to protect their accounts and (3) They are unlikely to shred personal documents, such as credit card statements and bank statements, before throwing them into the trash.
You should encourage your student to use strong passwords and keep them private. Talk to them about the proper way to discard documents that contain their personal information.
Identity theft insurance is a good way to protect against financial loss. Identity theft protection plans typically include credit monitoring, scanning for threats, and assistance with recovery efforts. Your homeowner’s insurance policy may also include identity theft coverage or allow you to purchase a rider for fraud protection.
WE ARE ONLY A CALL, CLICK OR TEXT AWAY
College is one of the most exciting times in your child’s life! It is an opportunity for your child to grow and develop, experience new things, and step outside their comfort zone. As much as you want that for your child, we also know how much you want to keep your child safe and protected. Having the proper insurance in place is one of the best ways you can do that.
Not only can the right insurance keep your college student protected, but it can also give Mom and Dad some peace of mind – and we think that is the cherry on top! If you would like to discuss your policies, please reach out to us. We look forward to hearing from you!