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Insurance Checklist for Your College Bound Kids

oswaldcompanies August 28, 2019

As kids pack up and leave for college, they launch the next exciting chapter of their lives. While they celebrate, we parents keep on worrying from afar, a “skill” we’ve been practicing since the day they were born. We know they’re not quite fully grown yet—despite what they tell us at every opportunity. We pay the tuition bills and fund their Amazon shopping sprees, but we also need to protect them while they’re living away from home. As the kids enjoy the newfound freedom of college life,

Mom and dad are often left wondering, “Are their personal belongings covered?” or “Do they need their own insurance policies?”

The answer to these questions may be tricky depending on your current insurance company. Kids living on campus are generally covered by their parents homeowner’s insurance policy, but it’s good to be aware of exactly what this means.

Liability: What happens if someone trips over the laundry pile in my child’s room and gets hurt?

Whether living down the hall in the room they’ve occupied since babyhood or settled into a dorm room the size of their former closet, your kids are covered by the same liability limit. They are still considered household members. Your Oswald personal client manger can gladly extend liability to the dorm room or apartment, simply by adding this location to your policy.

Personal Property: What if someone steals my child’s video gaming system?

Even though you might initially want to celebrate the loss of the gaming system that competes with and often wins out over studying, that item is covered under your homeowner’s policy (subject to the policy deductible.) However, there is a coverage limitation on the kids’ possessions. The typical policy allows 10 percent of the current homeowner’s contents limit. For example, a personal property limit of $350,000 on a home would then provide $35,000 for personal property that’s off-premises, such as the contents of a dorm room. In the high-tech world we live in, a coverage extension for electronics may sometimes be warranted if this amount is insufficient.

The Car: Is it going with your student?

It’s also a good idea to let your agent know if your son or daughter is going to school more than 100 miles away and isn’t taking a car. This could lower your auto premium.  After outfitting a dorm room or apartment with all the stuff your kids assure you is “essential,” parents appreciate all the savings they can get!

Before you excitedly prepare to turn your student’s bedroom into your long-awaited craft room, it’s a good idea to review your child’s insurance coverage with your Oswald personal client manager.  We’re always happy to explain exactly what your specific homeowner’s policy covers while your child is away from home.  With all you might be worrying about regarding your new college student, it’s nice to check one thing off that list!

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