A Parent’s Guide to Insurance for College Students

It’s that time of year again: football season, fall weather, and children leaving for college! It’s an exciting time; however, it’s important to address some insurance issues that could arise. Here are some helpful tips to discuss with your insurance professional:

Auto Insurance:

1. Will your child be taking a vehicle to college with them? If so, it’s important to let your insurance company know so they can update the garaging address for that vehicle. Since rates are dependent upon the zip code of the garaging address, you may see a slight rate change.

2. If you’re sending your child to college without a vehicle, let your insurance company know! Many companies offer discounts for students that are at least 100 miles away from home (attending school) without a vehicle. Furthermore, it’s imperative that you don’t remove your child from your auto insurance policy (even if they don’t have a vehicle at school) – they will still need coverage when they are home for the holidays (and also in the event they drive a friend’s vehicle who may not have insurance on their vehicle).

3. Lastly, many companies offer a discount for maintaining at least a ‘B’ average (whether or not they took a car to school). Just be ready to furnish a copy of their most recent report card showing their grade point average to the insurance company.

Renters Insurance:

1. Providing coverage for your children’s belongings in their dorm or at their residence at school can be a tricky task. Each company will treat this situation differently, so it’s important to discuss with your insurance professional. Typically, 10% of the ‘personal property’ limit on the parent’s home or renters insurance policy will extend to an ‘off premise’ location. However, there are sub-limits and restrictions on certain items (jewelry, computers, etc.). In some instances, this 10% extension is adequate for the student. If it’s not (or if your insurance company has other restrictions), it’s best to purchase a renters insurance policy for the student. Renters insurance policies can be purchased for about $10/month.

As exciting as the fall season can be, it’s important to take a few minutes to ensure that you and your children are covered properly. As always, please read the policy forms for exact coverage details and discuss your specific situation with your insurance professional.

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