Sending our kids off to college is an exciting time, especially knowing they are well prepared. Amid all the planning, shopping, and anxious preparation, it can be easy to overlook protection, renter’s insurance notwithstanding. Do college students need renter’s insurance for protection? Truthfully, it is not required, but can save a ton of headache for only around $13/month.

What is Renter’s Insurance?

Renter’s insurance is offered to help insure tenants that rent, and generally includes coverage for hazards such as:

  • Theft of Personal Property
  • Damage from Fire
  • Damage from Water
  • Bodily Injury, When Sustained on Insured Property
  • Natural Disasters (think earthquakes, tornadoes, even hailstorms)
  • Liability Insurance (for assistance with repairs, etc.)
  • Medical Payments (helps offset direct financial responsibility for injury sustained from slipping on the ice, or falling down the stairs, for instance)
  • Living Expenses (in case of fire or mold, you may need help paying for a short-term rental)

While your monthly deductible will vary based on some factors, such as zip code, type of property, worth of personal property insured, etc., it’s likely to be less than $20/month. Living in a dorm, many electronics may be covered under parent’s insurance policy, though in many cases, it may only cover a percentage of damages that occur outside the home. If you’re from a family that doesn’t hold a home or renter’s insurance policy, getting your own may be advantageous. It’s important to be sure to select a policy with enough coverage to cover the value of your possessions, in order to ensure replacement of school supplies if lost or stolen.

While it may seem unnecessary to insure a college student, consider this: the price of just one college textbook is around $80. That’s on top of the laptop, cell phone, jewelry and any other valuables brought from home. Many people don’t realize what a relief it is to know you’re covered in any event!

Things to Keep in Mind:

  • Only Get as Much Protection as You’ll Need

As increasing your property coverage will increase your premium, it would be wise to sit down and tally up the cost of what will truly be going along

  • Roommates Will Not be Covered in Your Policy

Be sure that each person has their own policy in place, or understands the risk they’re taking by being uninsured.

  • Know What is Covered

Be sure to consider carefully what you plan to bring, as some expensive items may be safer at home

  • Understand Your Policy (including your deductible)

How much of the damage will you personally be responsible for? If you have a $1,000 deductible and $3,000 worth of property gets damaged, $2,000 of that will be out of pocket