Orlando, FL 6/23/2017 10:28:42 AM — The good, the bad, and the ugly about sending your kid to college, away from home.
As you prepare your child to start a new, more independent life, you will realize that he/she needs to be fully equipped with expensive electronics, housewares for the dorm, plus many other valuables.
These items will now fully depend on his/her responsibility level and we are sure you’ve done enough creating awareness of being socially responsible and good citizenship. It works for their own good (and yours too.) But, what happens when something unexpected happens when he/she is not around to prevent the loss of personal property you worked hard to provide and is it covered by your homeowners insurance?
For students who live in a dorm, most personal possessions are covered under their parents' homeowners or renters insurance policies. However, some home insurance policies may limit the amount of insurance for off-premises belongings to 10 percent of the total amount of coverage for personal possessions. This means that if the parents have $70,000 worth of insurance for their belongings, only $7,000 would be applicable to possessions in the dorm. Not all insurers impose this type of limit.
Theft can be a major concern on college campuses; according to U.S. Department of Education in year 2015 the number of reported criminal offenses was 36,248. This is based on 6,701 institutions with 11,306 campuses.
The amount of fires accidents in off-campus residences are also of concern, according to the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).
The following is recommended for students going off to college:
• Leave valuables at home if possible
While it may be necessary to take a computer or sports equipment to campus, other expensive items, such as valuable jewelry, luxury watches or costly electronics, should be left behind or kept in a local safety deposit box.
• Create a “dorm inventory”
Before leaving home, students should make a detailed inventory of all the items they are taking with them, and revise it every year. Having an up-to-date inventory will help get insurance claims settled faster in the event of theft, fire or other types of disasters. For an easy way to put together an inventory, use the I.I.I.’s free Home Inventory Software.
• Engrave electronics
Engrave electronic items such as computers, televisions and portable devices like iPods with your name or other identifying information that can help police track the stolen articles.
If your kid decides to stay at an on-campus dorm, make sure to:
• Always lock the dorm room door and keep the keys on hand at all times, even to leave briefly. And, not just at night—most dorm thefts occur during the day. Insist that his/her roommates do the same.
• Don't leave belongings unattended on campus. Whether in class, the library, the dining hall or other public areas, keep an eye on book bags, purses and laptops at all times. These are the primary areas where property theft occurs.
• Buy a laptop security cable and use it. A combination lock that needs decoding may be just enough to dissuade a thief.
• Most campus fires are cooking related so be careful about the types of hot plates or microwaves and create awareness on how you use them.
Keeping their own car may also become an issue. You should also consider a multi-policy discount with your own insurance company.
To find solutions to these or any other insurance questions please contact one of our local experts in Central Florida at Orlando Insurance Center.
ENJOY LIFE RESPONSIBLY!