College Central®

Ask around. The Network works.®

Personal Finance
College Students And Renters Insurance

Devang Barot -- Renters insurance isn't just for your parents. If you're a college student living on your own or in the dorms, you need to consider the benefits and options available with renters insurance.

Insurance to protect your property against theft, fire, vandalism, and other forms of natural disaster that can befall you or your home or your property is not something just for home owners. Whether you're a renter or a college student living in the dorms for the first time, renters protection can help guard your personal property against the unexpected.

You don't have to be rich to need renters insurance. When you consider the investment you've made in your laptop computer, your iPad or iPod, your television and your home entertainment center, which may include a Wii or Xbox system, and even your cell phone or smart phone, it doesn't take long to realize that a theft or a fire could wipe you out and leave you thousands of dollars in the hole.

If you're a college student living away from home, you may still be covered under your parents' homeowners insurance if they have it, however the coverage will be extremely limited, offering as little as ten percent coverage. If you're not living in a college dorm but your own apartment, your parents' homeowners' coverage will offer no protection at all for you and you will need your own policy at this point.

Renter's coverage also will protect items stolen from your car such as your phone or your computer, which offers you a little bit more protection against the unexpected. When you talk to your insurance agent they will present you with two different options as far as renters insurance goes. You can opt for the replacement value of your property or you can opt for the cash value of your property.

It can get confusing if you're not used to dealing with indemnity to know which policy type is best for you. In a nutshell if you opt for the cash value of your property you will only be receiving a payment for what the item would be worth if you were to resell it today. Cash value takes into consideration depreciation and the wear and tear and condition of the item. In other words if you bought a laptop two years ago for $500 and they have since come down in value and yours has depreciated because of age the cash value your renters coverage for that laptop could be as little as $100, which certainly is not enough for you to replace the item.

If you opt for the replacement value of your property your premiums will be a little bit higher but your coverage will also be better. With replacement value you will get the cash value to replace the item. So that same laptop that you paid $500 for two years ago would still hold the like value to replace.

Make sure you take pictures of all of your valuables and keep a record of their serial numbers, brand names, and other pertinent information in a separate location for both the police and your agent in case you ever need to utilize your renters policy.

© 2011 Devang Barot

Return to top

The views and opinions expressed in these articles do not necessarily reflect those of College Central Network, Inc. or its affiliates. Reference to any company, organization, product, or service does not constitute endorsement by College Central Network, Inc., its affiliates or associated companies. The information provided is not intended to replace the advice or guidance of your legal or medical professional.