College is expensive enough without the added cost of unexpected accidents or theft not covered by your insurance policy. If you have a child heading away to college, use these tips to help you get the most out of your coverage.
Depending on if your child brings a car to campus or plans to just drive your car when they are home for weekend visits and school breaks, you’ll need different coverage.
Car Stays Home
Keep your child listed on your auto policy if they will still drive your car while at home on school breaks.
Car at School
Make sure to notify your insurance agent if your child is taking a car to school. In most cases, if the car is registered to you and listed on your policy, it is covered.
Driving a Friend’s Car
Students are generally covered if they are listed on their parent’s policy and are not regularly using the vehicle. The coverage is secondary as the insurance for the friend’s vehicle is the primary coverage.
A full-time student meeting certain academic requirements can qualify for a good student discount. Distant student discounts may be available. Drivers under 21 who have completed driver’s education may also get a discount.
Understand how your homeowners insurance policy protects your child and their belongings while they are living in a residence hall or dorm room.
Most homeowners policies cover personal property for up to 10% of your total policy while your child is residing at school. For example, a $100,000 policy equals $10,000 in coverage. Not all types of damage are covered, so read your policy carefully. Some items, such as jewelry or expensive electronics, require special coverage.
Creating an inventory of the items your child is taking to school is a good idea. Take photographs and keep receipts.
Renters insurance is affordable and an important protection for college students on and off campus.
General damage to a dorm room or apartment is covered under renters insurance. It also provides liability coverage for incidences that leave your child legally liable.
If your child’s personal property is not covered under your homeowners policy, renter’s insurance provides coverage for these items against theft or damage subject to the limits and deductibles you select.
Before your child leaves for college, contact your insurance agent to review your policies and ensure you have the right coverage. We’re here to help!
Reposted with permission from the original author, Safeco Insurance®.