Most students are on their parents’ auto insurance plan prior to leaving to college, which is great while they are living at home. But once a child takes a car to college, you need to contact your insurance agent, especially if your child goes to school out of state, as there may be different requirements. If they don’t take a car to college, you should consider keeping them on your policy so that they can continue to drive the car while they are home for breaks and vacations. Depending on their living situation, it might be more cost effective to get them their own policy.
The last thing a college student needs to worry about is replacing his/her items that are lost or damaged from theft or weather events. Most students have an average of $1,500 worth of electronic equipment, such as laptops, tablets, iPhones, printers, speakers, etc. If something happens, they might not be in a position to be able to run out and replace everything. If you, the parent, have a homeowner’s insurance policy, then your child should be covered up to 10% of the policy amount. So if the homeowner’s policy has a $300,000 personal property limit, then your child should be covered up to $30,000. However, if your child does file a claim, then your policy premiums will increase.
If the college student lives off campus, then they will not be covered under the parent’s insurance policy and a separate renter’s insurance policy should be purchased. They are very inexpensive these days (averaging between $75 and $300 per year).
Having renter’s insurance provides peace of mind for both parents and students. If the unexpected does happen, then the insurance company can provide temporary housing for the student, if the student has to move out due to an unexpected event, like a bad roof leak or a kitchen fire.
With the passage of the Affordable Care Act, children up to age 26 are now eligible to remain on their parents’ health insurance policies. If the student isn’t covered under your health insurance plan, don’t worry! There are more options available for students. Most colleges have contracts with insurers and provide low-cost health insurance plans for students. And depending on your family’s financial situation, it’s possible that the student will qualify for Medicaid while they are at college. The best solution is to first contact your current health insurance carrier to make sure that your college student is covered. If not, then contact the school they will be attending to determine what options are available.
As always, we are hear to help you with your auto insurance and renter’s insurance needs. Please contact us with any questions.